Mario Balotelli is an Italian footballer who may soon become a Liverpool player. He has long been one of my favorite players, and I can’t help but think that the way his reputation in Europe is shaped by race. (Balotelli has been the victim of horrific racist chants throughout his career, but I also think institutional racism shapes media coverage and popular opinion, as pointed out here and elsewhere.)
Balotelli is certainly an unusual footballer: Once, while signing an autograph for a child, Balotelli learned the kid was being bullied, and then drove across town to confront the bully and discuss the matter with the school principal. And he is famed for his generosity, although this is often portrayed popularly as an inability to handle his money well.
He also has a reputation for volatility and immaturity, and is often criticized for getting in fights with teammates. He once threw a dart at a younger player. You hear a lot that Balotelli is crazy and/or lazy. You hear that he stays out late.
Now, I think some of Balotelli’s professional behavior has been poor, and I’m not here to defend it. But look at the way we treat white players:
Liverpool’s Robbie Fowler once PRETENDED TO SNORT THE WHITE POWDER OF THE TOUCH LINE after scoring a goal, in reference to his cocaine use.
Point being, in all the cases above (and many, many, many more) the offenses were seen as youthful indiscretions, or as hilarious examples of Boys being Boys.
Fowler is now a coach; Beagrie is now a well-respected commentator; and Bellamy is still playing. You rarely hear about his on- and off-field indiscretions, even though they’re probably more numerous than Balotelli’s. Meanwhile, Balotelli makes the news (and gets fined $200,000) for eating curry.
Those of you who follow football will begin to hear a lot about Balotelli if he returns to play in England. You will hear about how he cried after being substituted (although you might not hear that he cried because he had to sit on the bench while racist chants rang through the stadium). You will hear about how he is “wild” and “unpredictable” and “lazy.”
But watch him play. Watch how good and smart and creative he can be, how he can find paths to goal that make people call him lazy (they called Messi lazy, too, remember) when really he is just waiting, like the chess master who sees four moves ahead. Watch him off the ball, moving to reshape the opposition’s defense.
And then watch him score, turn around unsmiling, and lift his shirt to ask the immense and complicated question.
what if obama does the ice bucket challenge and nominates queen elizabeth
what if obama actually talks about what’s going on in ferguson
what if obama stopped exterminating the middle eastern population with drones
what if obama lowered my gotdamn tuition
What if everyone gets educated and stops acting like the President can make decisions for the country by themselves
i actually feed on intelligence
i love it when people know a lot about a lot of things
about music, films, religion, beliefs, history
i love listening to peoples opinions
i love big words
i want to suck in all these smart things like a sponge
if you ever want to hold a boys hand, just tell them you could beat them arm wrestling. they can’t back down from that challenge
The thing about this is that sculptures like these in art history were for the male gaze. Photoshop a phone to it and suddenly she’s seen as vain and conceited. That’s why I’m 100% for selfie culture because apparently men can gawk at women but when we realize how beautiful we are we’re suddenly full of ourselves…
"without us you wouldn’t have any rights!" without you we wouldn’t have to fight for them
Always this. Always.
"Remember that men gave women the right to vote!"
And remember that men should never have been at such a social and political advantage as to be able to literally give and take away rights from groups of people.
fuckin tell ‘em
If you live anywhere near Evansville Indiana please be safe because apparently 10 women have been abducted and now they’re saying it’s a possible serial killer sO please don’t go anywhere alone
date people you see yourself walking down Main Street of Disneyland with.
Why don’t dogs get to see the world too?
This dog is literally smiling.
Oh my god
The video begins humorously as Anthony Carbajal, a photographer, dresses up in a neon bikini top and soaps up a car before being doused with ice water.
hoist the colours high
never shall we die
my mom thought otp meant “oh, the pain.”
what’s the difference
There is none
me as a celebrity
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