Racism and discrimination in sport

Discrimination is an unfair or unequal treatment of an individual or group, based on certain characteristics. Such characteristics include, but are not limited to, race, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, disability. Discrimination of any kind shall be prohibited; however, it is still happening, and some people might be unaware of the fact that their behaviour is discriminatory. People can be unaware of their racial biases or unaware of the hurtful effects.

For instance, one form of discrimination is gender discrimination, which is called sexism. Gender discrimination means that sometimes women and men are not treated as equals, but that women are seen as ‘less than’ men. Examples of gender discrimination are the so-called ‘gender pay gap’, where women make less money for every dollar a man makes, but also double standards in society that affect both men and women.

Another example is ableism. Ableism is the discrimination of and social prejudice against people with disabilities based on the belief that typical abilities are superior. At its heart, ableism is rooted in the assumption that disabled people require ‘fixing’ and defines people by their disability. Much like racism and sexism, ableism classifies entire groups of people as ‘less than’, and includes harmful stereotypes, misconceptions, and generalizations of people with disabilities.Possible in-class discussion topics:

Possible in-class discussion topics:

  • Why are there no openly gay male football players on the professional level?
  • How can we challenge racist and discriminatory slurs in football stadiums?

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