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Olympics: Second Spanish team photographed making 'slit-eyed' gesture

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posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 03:03 AM
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A second group of Spanish Olympic athletes has been photographed making “slit-eyed” gestures, threatening to overshadow the Beijing Games with a row over racial stereotyping.

The latest photo to emerge shows Spanish women tennis players pulling the pose, apparently in anticipation of their Federation Cup match against China in April.

Pictures of the Spanish men’s and women’s basketball teams making the gesture, a crude impersonation of Chinese people, were published in adverts in Spanish newspapers earlier this week.

The photos, which were reprinted around the world, added to Spanish sport's poor reputation for racial sensitivity.

The latest image appears to show players in Spain’s Federation Cup team doing the “slit-eyed” gesture along with members of their support staff. There is no suggestion that they intended to cause offence.

It was apparently taken after the team defeated Italy in the quarter-finals of the competition - the leading team contest for women tennis players - in February. Wine glasses are visible on the table in front of the party.


Kind of cute in one way, kind of racist in another. But in either case, it's not sportsmanlike.




posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 06:15 AM
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reply to post by TrueAmerican
 


I think they all probably have allergies or something... nothing racial happening here!!



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 06:20 AM
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It would be great if the Chinese could see that the Spanish are not racist, just insensitive. It was a stupid thing to do but its not exactly racist.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 06:44 AM
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reply to post by Dermo
 


I agree, the above states racial stereotyping which in my opinion is correct.

Racist? No, I don't think so.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 08:23 AM
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I disagree. I think it is pretty racist to make that kind of gesture. Of all the other things that team could have done to poke fun at the Chinese, that was a low blow. It is specifically making fun of physical features of Asians because of their race. Racist, racist, racist!



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 08:32 AM
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People are too sensitive in my opinion.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 08:42 AM
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Stupid and insensitive yes.

Racist, I suspect not.

People need to learn to laugh at themselves.
It does me the world of good as I frequently find myself having to!



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 08:53 AM
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What would be equally as charming for the Chinese to do in order to make fun of the Spanish in the same way? The Flamenco dance? Flan tossing? TrueAmerican is correct. The Spanish are participating in racial sterotyping of Asians.

Maybe if the Chinese all held their eyes vertically? But that would be making fun of Caucasians and Black Africans (Is there another acceptable word?).



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 08:54 AM
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I am a non-Spanish person living in Spain, and must report that in my opinion the Spanish are shockingly racist in general.

Black people a referred to in disdain and with contempt. Gypsies are hated and spat upon. The general climate is one of xenophobia and ridicule towards other ethnic groups.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 09:01 AM
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Originally posted by Psychopump
I
Black people a referred to in disdain and with contempt. Gypsies are hated and spat upon. The general climate is one of xenophobia and ridicule towards other ethnic groups.


Well, in that case, I suppose it's all well and good if the U.S seals up its national borders,which is something that I think should have been done thirty years ago. However, anytime America does something like that or even considers it, it makes us "eeeevil."



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 09:08 AM
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A racist comment or action is something said or done deliberately to cause offence or hurt based on the intended victims alleged racial inferiority.

I suspect this was done as a very poor attempt at humour and was not intended to insult or to portray any alleged racial superiority.

However, I must say, my experience of Spaniards and Spain, and I accept it is a gross generalisation, is that they are quite racist in their attitude to Africans in particular.
Perhaps some hangover from The Moors and their close proximity to Africa.

I don't know, just an off the cuff thought.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 09:08 AM
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Originally posted by Psychopump
I am a non-Spanish person living in Spain, and must report that in my opinion the Spanish are shockingly racist in general.

Black people a referred to in disdain and with contempt. Gypsies are hated and spat upon. The general climate is one of xenophobia and ridicule towards other ethnic groups.


I spent many years in the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica. Living there, not as a tourist. In neither of those cases did I ever witness the racism I have seen first hand out of Puerto Ricans and Mexicans. The Dominicans occasionally poke fun at the Haitians for being so black "you can only see their teeth at night," but it is never done with malice or inherent racism. So I guess it depends on the culture. But for a national Spanish team to do this (for the second time, see thread title, I've not seen the first picture) is just sorry as hell.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 09:09 AM
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I remember at the Spanish Grand Prix there were a few Spanish fans who blacked their faces with shoe polish and donned Afro type wigs in order to aggravate British Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton who had a run in with Spanish driver Fernando Alonso. I just put it down to a few bad apples and gave the Spanish people in general the benefit of the doubt but, this is the National Olympic team for goodness sake, what were they thinking.

I'm Scottish so I'm no stranger to people poking fun at my culture. Most people think Scots all talk like Shrek, wear kilts and chase haggis around whilst playing bagpipes. But there's a time and a place and that wasn't it.

I'd be VERY careful where I dined out if I were a Spanish person in china right now.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 09:12 AM
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Is it me or do the Spaniards have a very juvenile sense of humor? do they not have chinese people in Spain? are asian eyes really that funny to them? Any Spaniard ATS members insight would be greatly welcomed.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 09:19 AM
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Originally posted by Fathom
.... do they not have chinese people in Spain?.....


There are so many obvious jokes there about Take-aways, laundrette's etc but I shall resist for fear of being accused of racism!



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 10:11 AM
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I don't wish to generalise, but the Spanish have a reputation for having a strong vein of racism in their nation.

Brits who pay close attention to sports will be able to tell you all about the racism in Spanish football. Luis Arragones, Spanish national team coach, should imo be dubbed the Grand Wizard of Madrid. Also, when England have played them black players from England are taunted with monkey noises. Utterly disgraceful.

And as someone has already mentioned, there was the Lewis Hamilton Incident in Formula One.

So am I shocked at these idiots doing slant eye gestures? No, sadly I am not.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 11:14 AM
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reply to post by Terran Blue
 


You beat me to it - the level of racism in spain towards black footballers, especially from other countries has only ever been matched by some eastern european countries.

If it's a cultural thing, then perhaps it's time for them to make a few cultural changes.

This is nothing new from the spanish - it's not a sense of humour thing, it's racism,plain and simple.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 11:24 AM
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Originally posted by budski
This is nothing new from the spanish - it's not a sense of humour thing, it's racism,plain and simple.


Ahh, I new someone had to agree with me on that call.
I appreciate it, bud.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 11:39 AM
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They could be making fun of the eye shape of the chinese people. Being in the process of reading Tex Marrs' "Codex Magica", it looks awfully similar to an Illuminati gesture that he points out in that book.



posted on Aug, 20 2008 @ 11:54 AM
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From what I understand, Spanish and Latin American culture is VERY race based. In Latin America (and I would suspect in Spain as well) the whiter you are then the more important or powerful you appear (due to a pure blood line that can be traced to the Spanish Conquistadors) and conversely the darker you are the lower you appear.

Puerto Rico is a prime example of this, according to this last census the island is 97% White when in reality it is 88% Hispanic Non White and 12% White Non Hispanic (mostly retirees and federal government/military personnel and their families), Black or Asian. Also, look at the list of Governors of Puerto Rico since 1952 (prior to 1898 Puerto Rico was a Spanish colony and from 1898 until 1952 governors were appointed by the President of the United States) and see if you notice something they all have in common regarding family status and skin color - they were mostly all born into upper class families with bloodlines that go back to the Spanish conquistadors that conquered the island in the 1500s.


EDIT: thinking back I also recall several other similar incidents involving Spanish sports teams in overseas games especially when Spanish soccer teams happen playing to be playing against an African nation.

[edit on 20-8-2008 by ChrisF231]



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