Andy Gray, Richard Keys, sexism in football blah blah blah.
I’m sure you don’t want to read about them any more and I don’t intend to drag this tedious affair on any longer (apart from linking you to some other classic Keys moments, here and here).
However, I do want to say something regarding the idea of prejudice. We have to remember that something is only racist, sexist, ageist or heightist if the respective issues are independent of the job that someone does.
If somebody is old and this leads them to do their job less adequately than they would as a youngster, it should not be taboo to remove them from the job. If viewers of a TV programme are more responsive to a 30-year-old than a 54-year-old, then age does get in the way with the profits that the TV company could be making.
Equally, if I applied to work as a waiter in a Chinese restaurant, they should have the right to reject me because I am not Chinese. If they employed me, it may make the place feel less authentic, potentially leading to a loss of earnings. Therefore, my skin would affect the welfare of the company and so they can reject me on those grounds.
If a business tends to employ people over 6ft 2inches, this is not necessarily heightist. A colossal robust man is probably more likely to dominate an alpha-male environment more successfully than a 5ft 5 weed. He is therefore more likely to close a deal and so his height does affect the profit a company makes.
The Abercrombie shop in London – possibly the most shamelessly vile place on earth – should be able to pick their assistants based on looks, because the type of individuals that enter that hellhole are responsive to pretty people. It therefore affects how much money the company makes.
My point is this: just because the individuals of a company are skewed towards a particular demographic, it does not mean there is necessarily anything suspicious or prejudicial about their selection policy. People seem extremely eager to jump on a bandwagon just to be seen as politically correct, but we need to think about issues before charging headfirst with accusations of “[insert taboo subject here]ism.”
The fact that our country is one of the most accepting nations on earth is something we should genuinely feel truly proud of. But we also have to remain thoughtful and not become mindless sheep. As for Gray and Keys, their comments were sexist because the fact that linesman (er… lineslady) Sian Massey was female did not impact upon doing her job.
I dedicate this post to Kate Walsh, after watching her on The Big Questions this morning. God, she’s annoying. Just like every fucking bitch in the world.