As you may or may not know, Newcastle defender Steven Taylor has landed himself in hot water after “posting a desperately ill-judged picture on Twitter apparently mocking four black team-mates”. Taylor had been teased about his attempts to learn French by black team mate Massadio Haïdara. This from The Guardian
Retorting to Haïdara’s dismissal of his linguistic skills, the centre-half wrote: “It’s always good to see you guys smiling” and attached a picture depicting four black faces. One was an actual picture of Anita, the others of individuals wearing a black mask while displaying bright white teeth, what appeared to be an afro wig and perhaps African tribal clothes.
The sad thing about the incident is that Taylor rolled out an immediate press-release-style apology in which he wrote “Apologies if my tweet offended anybody.” Sad because Taylor does not seem to be (a) conscious of the inappropriate nature of his “joke” and (b) is not really sorry because he has put a big ‘if’ in the faux apology.
You can read more about this unsavory incident here in this post from blog Africasacountry.
It doesn’t take a genius to work out why the tweet was problematic: a white man mocking four black men (‘you guys’), unprompted, with obscene blackface caricatures is, to use the common parlance, Not OK.
But I’m sure that some of Steven Taylor’s best friends are black so that makes it all good.