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Vinicius will mark a before and after | Soccer | Sports


We could say that Vinicius is a hothead and a provocateur, or a victim of persecution for being a Madrid figure. Or both, he doesn’t care. What is certain is that his time in our football, which I hope will be long, will have marked a before and after. That day when he pointed his index finger at one of his offenders in the Mestalla stands, something changed. It coincided with the fact that he was later expelled for misuse of the VAR, that Ancelotti wrongly accused the entire stadium, that Lula was on an international stage, that Tebas crossed paths with one of his hasty tweets… All of this together meant that in Brazil , but not only there, Spain gained a reputation for being racist.

My generation grew up convinced that we Spaniards were not racist. We also had no reason to be one or conditions to know if we were, here there was no other race than ours, except for some soccer players who could be counted on the fingers of one hand. In the comics there were often jokes about missionaries in pots, cooked by blacks, but it didn’t occur to us that that was racism.

When we became rich and emigrants began to arrive, words such as sudacas, panchitos and conguitos arose, with the same derogatory tone with which we always use the word moro for our Moroccan neighbors, who were already viewed with distrust before they came. Were we racist? We told ourselves no because in our colonization we did not exterminate, we only enslaved. We even crossed blood, something that the other great colonizing nation, England, did not do.

But many immigrants have reasons to believe otherwise. One of them is Vinicius, who is insultingly called black or monkey, equating both conditions. He was not the first, many before him have endured it. Eto’o even rebelled one day and wanted to leave La Romareda, but that perhaps came too soon. And he also played for Barça, not for Madrid. Now Vinicius has put his finger on our wound, with his index finger pointing at the Mestalla offender, one more among many in so many fields, and that marked another #isover. If we still want to think that we are not racists, we will have to at least admit that we have been tolerant of racism, and not only because of the passivity of the neighbors of those who utter these insults, but also because of the reactions of Justice to the insistent complaints from LaLiga. Not even Madrid joined them. His phobia of Thebes was stronger.

That is until Spain suddenly found itself treated as a racist country, and then yes, then what had been consented to was no longer allowed. Now they still yell black or monkey at him when he arrives on the bus, where in the crowds it is more difficult to identify the madmen, but in the countryside they only say “die!”, as has been said to so many others, of course. so many teams, in so many fields. Someday we will also have to worry about that, which currently does not worry either Martínez Munuera or the CTA, but we are going in parts. The first thing is the disgusting racist insult, so common until recently. On Tuesday, a Spain-Brazil match will be played at the Bernabéu, Vinicius through, with a vocation to repudiate racism. A national statement of collective amendment purpose.

It may be difficult to see Vinicius as a Tommie Smith, whose gesture of extreme dignity in Mexico-68 went around the world. He has too many reprehensible attitudes that cannot be masked behind a racist persecution that many others suffered and suffer before, but in that area his rebellious nature has found a just cause. When he leaves he will have marked a before and after.

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