Recently, there have been two reported instances of anti-Semitic remarks within the football community. Arsenal Football Club is currently investigating the incidents, which occurred during the North London Derby match against Tottenham Hotspur. One incident took place within the stadium, while the other occurred at a bar in Islington.
According to the Gunners’ statement, “We have been made aware of two disturbing incidents over the weekend involving antisemitism which are now under investigation.
“There was an incident at the north London derby on Sunday involving Arsenal supporters in which one of our fans overheard grossly offensive antisemitic statements made by another Arsenal fan. On the same afternoon, we were appalled to hear of an incident at The Cally pub in Islington, involving other antisemitic chants.”
“We recognise the impact this behaviour has on our many Jewish supporters and others and condemn the use of language of this nature, which has no place in our game or society.”
Twitter’s reaction to the Anti-Semitic sentiments
Yesterday my friend & wonderful comedian Katie Price experienced an antisemitic attack at the Spurs Arsenal game. She doesn’t use twitter so I’m sharing what she wrote on her behalf:
— Lily O’Farrell (@vulgadrawings) January 16, 2023
A Twitter user shared their friend’s experience of attending the Arsenal vs. Tottenham match, where they witnessed an unfortunate turn of events. Initially, Arsenal fans were chanting that they “hate” Tottenham, and the person in question joined in.
However, towards the end of the match, the fans began to chant an anti-Semitic slur, which deeply shocked the individual. The person who started the chant even approached the victim and directed the anti-Jewish slur towards them directly.
Other fans encouraged the Twitter user to report the incident to the police, as hate crimes should not be tolerated in any sports event. Many football fans have expressed their sympathy for the victim and condemnation of the anti-Semitic behaviour.
She then added, “yesterday I was let down. Let down by The Cally, let down by the forty other people in that pub who stood by, many of whom joined in with the group’s chants of ‘y*ddo go home’. Let down by my own fans, who are supposed to stick together, united by our love of football.”
Example of how words can be extremely offensive in one context but not in another: Arsenal fans use the word 'Yid' (or 'Yiddo') in unquestionably antisemitic ways against Spurs fans. In my Yiddish classes, we use the Yiddish word for 'Jew', which is 'yid'.
— Michael Rosen 💙💙🎓🎓 (@MichaelRosenYes) January 18, 2023
Another Twitter user explained the gravity of the word that was used against the Jewish fans. Questions on the Spurs having a large Jewish following was also stated. This could be the reason why Arsenal fans were chanting these hateful words.
Sports should be a place where fans bond together on their likeness towards a certain team. It is meant for everyone, regardless of race, gender, sexuality to celebrate the winnings of their favourite team. It is not a place for political ideologies, but rather an event to enjoy and appreciate the sport.
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