Racism is everywhere

News of a racial fist fight and name-calling at an amateur football match in Johannesburg - as reported in this newspaper yesterday - is disconcerting.

News of a racial fist fight and name-calling at an amateur football match in Johannesburg - as reported in this newspaper yesterday - is disconcerting.

Racism is one evil we should all be working to eliminate at all costs. So it is worrying when it is perpetrated by youngsters who should not ordinarily carry any residue of the misguided belief that some people are better than others solely because of their skin colour.

It does not matter who started it. The point is that racism can never and should never be tolerated, regardless of who perpetrates it.

We expect the clubs to take the toughest action possible against anyone found to have been party to this blight on what is supposed to be the beautiful game.

The South African Football Association should not only investigate the incident and punish those found guilty, it should take an honest look at racism and conceive programmes to fight it before it becomes institutionalised.

Safa should not fall into the trap of being complacent by thinking that racism is a problem of other sporting codes.

If we needed a reminder that football, despite its unmatched history of eschewing racism in sport, is not immune to the other ills that afflict our society, last weekend's episode should be a sharp reminder.

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