RACISM IN THE DUTCH FOOTBALL SCENE: THE PUBLIC OUTCRY
The football scene can be an exemplary space for the rest of society (Grol, 2022. When football player Ahmad Mendes Moreira walked off the field crying during a match due to racial abuse on Sunday 17 November 2019, many others were remembered of theirs. It started national system reforms (Adviescollege Dialooggroep Slavernijverleden, 2021). The contribution of this study to the body of literature was that it captured the influence of the general public towards this racist incident. With the purpose to contribute to the process of combatting the ramifications and sources of racism in society by exposing areas of attention, the research question was formulated as follows: ‘’How does racism influence the public discourse in the Netherlands on racist incidents in football?’’. Inductive reasoning made it possible to qualitatively analyse over 180 social media comments on the NOS pages, using discourse analysis. An imaginary racism spectrum ranged from acknowledging to denying racism, from which three detrimental frames were identified: compromised comments & equating Black Pete with racism, a defence system against allegations of racism and a culture of oppression. From this research it transpired that the status quo in the Dutch football scene indeed reproduces hegemonic power relations. The aspiration remains to collectively work towards changing the constructed realities of the social world to better accommodate people of colour in football and society at large.