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breako
24-03-15, 23:03
Ok, so David Pocock makes a valid complaint about homophobic slurs. I am just wondering what should refs be doing here. Taking a step back, if someone makes a racists slur, it's a red card. No doubt. So if one player shouts to the other team "you f*ggots" is it also a red? Always? Or only if it's known a member of the other team is gay?

What about a religious slur? If some says: "Jesus Christ" in an angry way to a situation, is that a red? One could argue a religious person might find that deeply offensive.

What about if one player calls another "an annoying fat f*ck" - yellow or red?

Obviously, any form of sledging should not be tolerated. But what's the correct sanction? As there are contextual and subjective differences surely?

Dickie E
24-03-15, 23:03
if someone makes a racists slur, it's a red card. No doubt.

"You Aussie git" "You Kiwi git" "You Pommie git" "You Yankee git". RC???

SimonSmith
25-03-15, 00:03
Ok, so David Pocock makes a valid complaint about homophobic slurs. I am just wondering what should refs be doing here. Taking a step back, if someone makes a racists slur, it's a red card. No doubt. So if one player shouts to the other team "you f*ggots" is it also a red? Always? Or only if it's known a member of the other team is gay?

What about a religious slur? If some says: "Jesus Christ" in an angry way to a situation, is that a red? One could argue a religious person might find that deeply offensive.

What about if one player calls another "an annoying fat f*ck" - yellow or red?

Obviously, any form of sledging should not be tolerated. But what's the correct sanction? As there are contextual and subjective differences surely?

You're setting up arguments of false equivalence. Making a statement that may run contrary to a belief set is emphatically not the same as attacking an actual person.

didds
25-03-15, 01:03
no sldging?

"I shagged yer mum".

what if he actually did?

didds

Browner
25-03-15, 01:03
If someone calls me "an Ugly F***er Bald W@nkur" , then could i take offence despite the possibility that they are correct x4 !!!

What if the a player said to Nigel Owen "you're straight" .... Is that a slur toward him ????

But back to the OP Question, I suspect most refs will pretend not to have heard , as it will require big gonads to RC a player for such abusive sledging irrespective of the tone/phrase or type of verbals being fired, & I doubt I'll ever see an elite ref issue a RC for the same.

Dixie
25-03-15, 06:03
Great question Breako! Not least because common usage of words in other arenas has not yet reached the universal level if disapprobation it has in the racial arena. As Clarkson has discovered to his cost, even a nursery rhyme from another era can get you into very hot water if you use it today in its original form, but do we shy away from reporting that Jock strained his groin dancing the Gay Gordons?

I see a (nuanced) difference between a racial insult (a disparaging comment targeted at some inherent characteristic of the individual concerned) and a vague, generalised comparison. Is there a significant difference between "You're all a load of wimps!" and "You're all poofs!"? Both intend to convey the same inaccurate point - a lack of the manliness needed to play the game. The second is obviously derogatory to the gay community, and is intended to be - so in that regard it is socially worse. The utterer has outed himself as a bigot, but otherwise I would generally see little difference on the pitch.

This changes, of course, if the target of the insult is not only gay, but known to be gay. That's easy enough if one team markets itself as a gay rugby club like the Kings Cross Steelers. But if the targeted player had once played for the team making the comment and has forced to leave when his sexuality became known, that is a more serious issue, but one the ref is unlikely to have the back-story to.

In both race and sexuality, there are shades of grey in the offence. I once had two players, a thuggish white prop and a more cultured black flanker, squaring up at each other like boxers at a weigh-in, neither being physical but also neither prepared to be the first to withdraw a threatening gaze - though the prop was walking backwards and the flanker was maintaining the small distance between them. The thug called to me: Sir, can you please remove my shadow? Was it racist (as his opponent's team mates considered) or a reference to the fact that another player was shadowing his movement? Similarly, if a young player on the opposing team comments about a mis-thrown lineout: That was so Gay! - is that homophobic or an example of youth vernacular (or both)?

Minefield! I can see the merit of turning a deaf ear. Oops! Was that anti-disability?

crossref
25-03-15, 07:03
It all depends on context, tone, and the actual worlds used.
At one end of the spectrum we know that the RFU banned a spectator for abusing Nigel Owens, i think that implies that precisely the same abuse on the field would be a worth a RC.

At the other end if the spectrum we know that some on field banter that makes joking reference to Nigel Owens sexuality is applauded and the subject of some 'best of" youtube clips (I am straighter than your last throw)

So it all depends, doesn't it..

crossref
25-03-15, 10:03
. I once had two players, a thuggish white prop and a more cultured black flanker, squaring up at each other like boxers at a weigh-in, neither being physical but also neither prepared to be the first to withdraw a threatening gaze - though the prop was walking backwards and the flanker was maintaining the small distance between them. The thug called to me: Sir, can you please remove my shadow? Was it racist (as his opponent's team mates considered) or a reference to the fact that another player was shadowing his movement?

I think this situation is so nuanced that the optimal response from the referee is impossible to determine from a second hand account -- you have to be there to judge it.

How did you you handle it, and did it work?

4eyesbetter
25-03-15, 10:03
A thought.

There are many things that happen on a rugby pitch that are against the laws. Some of them are things that are against the laws, but are probably going to happen a few times in any match, aren't that serious, they're worth penalising, but it's an accepted part of the game that they're probably going to happen. Not releasing the tackled player quickly enough is a nice cross-code example.

There are some things that happen sometimes that are against the laws because they have no place on the pitch. Intentional high tackles, spear tackles. These we deal with more harshly. They are very definitely not an accepted part of the game, and the game is improved by sending off the players that do those things.

If homophobic language is an accepted part of the game, you now have a game that is inherently less welcoming to people. Most sports all have a horrible image problem among LGBT people, and not without reason. If using homophobic language is "only" worth a penalty against, you've just reinforced that image, because you're saying that it's a part of the game - a part of the game that we frown on slightly and would rather people didn't do, but still a part of the game.

Not every gay player wears a pride bracelet, or plays for Steelers or Canalsiders. There are plenty of straight people who don't want to be in a homophobic (or sexist, or racist) environment. This is in no way about whether one individual in one moment may or may not take offence at one remark. It's about the entire image of the sport. If the answer is not "send off, every time" for homophobic language, then you're saying that homophobia is a part of the game, just the same as if the answer wasn't "send off, every time" for a spear tackle that dropped the player on his head, you'd be saying that spear tackles are a part of the game.

Flish
25-03-15, 19:03
Used to play junior level with fast center who was once, eventually, carded by the coach reffing, for his habit of shouting "give the n1gg3r the ball", (no, he wasn't a white lad) the coach had no idea how to handle it, he just knew he had to do something, we laughed. At end of the day no words are insulting or offensive, it's only the intent behind the person using them

menace
26-03-15, 01:03
Used to play junior level with fast center who was once, eventually, carded by the coach reffing, for his habit of shouting "give the n1gg3r the ball"

I don't know Will.I.Am played rugby? Must be where he got all his song lyrics?

irishref
26-03-15, 15:03
nigger is an exceedingly offensive word before you even consider intent. All day every day - especially when feckwitted rappers use it.

Browner
26-03-15, 16:03
This is in no way about whether one individual in one moment may or may not take offence at one remark. It's about the entire image of the sport. If the answer is not "send off, every time" for homophobic language, then you're saying that homophobia is a part of the game, just the same as if the answer wasn't "send off, every time" for a spear tackle that dropped the player on his head, you'd be saying that spear tackles are a part of the game.

But this sport already does have a culture of swearing/aggressive/personally directed insults at opponents for some reason or another, this mid match sledging (or verball abusing your opponent) is widespread. IMHO most abuse is delivered to cause optimum offence to 'an opponent' , & the choice of abuse will invariably be selected to directly hit the most sensitive nerve to irritate to the maximum, whatever that nerve may be. If you RC ALL instances of verbal abuse (irrespective of subject) then you will be a 'CanuteRef' swimming against a society tide.

This is why we will see players saying things to opponents ( ie FO Ginger tw@t) even when their best buddy teammate clearly has copper hair...etc etc

& on that score alone, bald , ginger, ugly, fat, or colour , or sexuality have equal 'abuse' statuses, to do differently is by definition selective discrimination, ref society should take a hard line or soft line against all 'equally'.

As for 'Nigger' its become socially acceptable again, because the songwriters have repopularised it amongst the young, it doesn't have the 1960-70s connotations mainly because were not in the 70s any longer !

As an example, Yesterday i was refereeing a uni 7s tourno, they had music booming outta massive speakers to a uni audience of spectators, "motherf@cker and Nygger" were repeatedly blasted out through the lyrics of the songs that they were all swaying along to, and the audience appeared to have a full multicultural mix.

didds
26-03-15, 16:03
y-e-r-s... isn't the actual use of the N word however in reality only "OK" for non caucasians?

didds

Browner
26-03-15, 16:03
y-e-r-s... isn't the actual use of the N word however in reality only "OK" for non caucasians?

didds
But that would be discriminatory - the concept of equality carries no advantage of use based on skin shade.

crossref
26-03-15, 17:03
you lot don't half tie yourself up in knots.
In the UK at least just work on the principle that that word is simply NOT acceptable on a rugby pitch, or in the clubhouse or indeed in any other rugby context.

Indeed I can't remember ever hearing it used in rugby environment - apart from on this bloody board! where somehow it crops up regularly --- and I really wish it didn't.

L'irlandais
26-03-15, 22:03
I like the fact that Tag Rugby laws actually state that the use [of] offensive or obscene language is a penalty at least. While abusive language to provoke opposition players is foul play. Meriting a Red card under Law 10.4 (http://laws.worldrugby.org/index.php?highlight=language&domain=7&modified_form=2&mf_section=34) (links to World Rugby dot org) if the ref deems it ; so what if your "joker" doesn't feel it merited ending his day of rugby, that's just food for thought for him on the sideline.

4eyesbetter
27-03-15, 18:03
But that would be discriminatory - the concept of equality carries no advantage of use based on skin shade.

This would be fine if we lived in a perfectly egalitarian society. We don't, we live in one that's spent most of the last 400 years overtly shitting on black people en masse, and the rest of it making a few tiny baby steps towards redressing the balance while doing a lot of the same things in more subtle ways. When calling people ginger or fat carries the same baggage with it, I'll treat those words in the same way as I do racist or homophobic ones.

Browner
27-03-15, 19:03
This would be fine if we lived in a perfectly egalitarian society. We don't, we live in one that's spent most of the last 400 years overtly shitting on black people en masse, and the rest of it making a few tiny baby steps towards redressing the balance while doing a lot of the same things in more subtle ways. When calling people ginger or fat carries the same baggage with it, I'll treat those words in the same way as I do racist or homophobic ones.

The point is that the last 400+ years ( or the 1970s) is mostly irrelevant to today's trending attitudes

I do see players targeted for abuse in matches, but they are targeted because they are good players/physically weaker/or physically stronger/dangerous runners/mentally fragile/tactical astute/ easy to provoke or when someone is trying to upset their concentration , but I never witness anyone specifically targetted merely because of their colour religion or sexual orientation.

Separate these subjects and bury the myth.

I seriously doubt any of the stuff aimed at NO was actually because of his sexuality , much more likely because of an increasing (on trend) abuse category 'refaphobia', which is a trend increasing issue in this sport, exactly as it is in soccer where all post match discussion commences with analysing and the losing coach/manager criticising Mr Independent & his Team, rather than his players errors or any of his tactical or coaching ability or their match decisions!!!!

But, hey ....just my opinions, if yours don't align then sobeit, a multiopinioned world is fine with me .

Flish
27-03-15, 22:03
End of the day there's no way of deciding where the line is, personal opinions, upbringing, religion, discrimination (positive and negative) and everything else around us influences what words we deem as acceptable, and in what context, so you either play deaf or make judgement. Of course there's a good argument for players keeping their mouth shut so they don't run the risk

SimonSmith
28-03-15, 00:03
I'm confused by today's mores*

As DO I'm dealing with a player who called a female referee "a ****ing ****". Should I treat that as sexist referee abuse, or just accept it as a normal every day curse word?

*Im not really

Browner
28-03-15, 13:03
As DO I'm dealing with a player who called a female referee "a ****ing ****". Should I treat that as sexist referee abuse, or just accept it as a normal every day curse word?


Ask the player if the abuse was it because she was was female, or because she was the referee & decided something that the player didnt agree with.

I'd wager on the latter, which makes it 'referee' abuse.

4eyesbetter
28-03-15, 13:03
Because of course he has no incentive to choose the answer that makes him look less bad. Do you ask someone if a spear tackle is intentional or clumsy before deciding on the grading?

Browner
28-03-15, 14:03
Because of course he has no incentive to choose the answer that makes him look less bad. ?

Fair point, but I wonder whether this player actually routinely abuses females in this way or just those that carry a whistle and referee and made a decision against !

Pegleg
29-03-15, 10:03
As DO I'm dealing with a player who called a female referee "a ****ing ****". Should I treat that as sexist referee abuse, or just accept it as a normal every day curse word?






Ask the player if the abuse was it because she was was female, or because she was the referee & decided something that the player didnt agree with.

I'd wager on the latter, which makes it 'referee' abuse.


Does it really matter? It's abuse. Red Card; end off!

Browner
29-03-15, 15:03
Does it really matter? It's abuse. Red Card; end off!

Yes pegleg it does matter, from such tiny 'misinterpreted' acorns an abuse claim oak grows.

It leads to the dystopian place where you can't disagree/argue/ with anyone without some kind 'card' being waved at you.

Verbal abuse is invariably because of the 'status' or the 'actions' of the opponent/referee (not excused!) rather than any other social group the player might or might not fit into, least that's what I judge, mostly.

******

"Dad, do you know my science teacher Mr Grist?"
"Not sure son, is he that tall guy with the bushy ginger beard?"
"No dad, that's Mr Cotter"
"sorry, is he that short bald bloke with the glasses ?"
"No dad, that's Mr Landun"
" oops, sorry son, I get confused, is he the Asian bloke wearing a orange turban who walks round school wearing a laboratory coat carrying a copy of the 'table of elements and a microscope ?"

"DAD !!!!! ...you can't say that - its racist ! "
"Why is it son?"

"Coz he's Asian dad"

"Whoever is influencing that misguided line of thinking son, needs shooting "

"That'll be our Head - Miss De Luded Dad, but you can't shoot her .... coz that'll be sexist if you do " !!!!!!

"Son, I need to have a long chat with you, to help you get this subject straight "

"OMG dad, i dont believe it, you're now being homophobic as well ...."

:shrug:

RobLev
29-03-15, 17:03
Yes pegleg it does matter, from such tiny 'misinterpreted' acorns an abuse claim oak grows.

It leads to the dystopian place where you can't disagree/argue/ with anyone without some kind 'card' being waved at you.

Verbal abuse is invariably because of the 'status' or the 'actions' of the opponent/referee (not excused!) rather than any other social group the player might or might not fit into, least that's what I judge, mostly.

******

"Dad, do you know my science teacher Mr Grist?"
"Not sure son, is he that tall guy with the bushy ginger beard?"
"No dad, that's Mr Cotter"
"sorry, is he that short bald bloke with the glasses ?"
"No dad, that's Mr Landun"
" oops, sorry son, I get confused, is he the Asian bloke wearing a orange turban who walks round school wearing a laboratory coat carrying a copy of the 'table of elements and a microscope ?"

"DAD !!!!! ...you can't say that - its racist ! "
"Why is it son?"

"Coz he's Asian dad"

"Whoever is influencing that misguided line of thinking son, needs shooting "

"That'll be our Head - Miss De Luded Dad, but you can't shoot her .... coz that'll be sexist if you do " !!!!!!

"Son, I need to have a long chat with you, to help you get this subject straight "

"OMG dad, i dont believe it, you're now being homophobic as well ...."

:shrug:

I'm worried about the disconnect between the dialogues in your head and real life.

Browner
29-03-15, 21:03
I'm worried about the disconnect between the dialogues in your head and real life.

It was merely an example of how this subject is misinterpreted & misunderstood, you probably knew that, which helps me dismiss your comment as mere drink fuelled chunter.:love:

Browner
04-04-15, 16:04
Looks like a sincere set of apologies sufficed, can't help wondering if the referee abuser wore a tie to their meeting:deadhorse:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02nf26y