View Full Version : Ron Atkinson's big mistake.

23rd Apr 2004, 08:51
Story here. (http://football.guardian.co.uk/News_Story/0,1563,1201491,00.html)

I am suprised this hasn't been aired on Jet Blast.

A careless and tasteless remark that has cost him dearly but how many of us can say we have never said anything in private that would offend many if broadcast?

The comments in the 3rd and 4th from last paragraphs are perhaps the most telling.

tony draper
23rd Apr 2004, 09:19
A dead microphone is a very dangerous bit of kit.
The "N" word has become the new megga taboo guaranteed to get you sacked word,unless of course you happen to a person of colour, then apparently you can use it every second word,along with Mutha F****.
Twas never a word in common use in the North of England anyway.

23rd Apr 2004, 09:27
Although I can't say it is in anyway acceptable, how many people at some stage of their life, has not said something similar. If only in jest!

For sake of 4 words, its a bit stiff, considering A- he should have been off air (so its his own personal time) and B- does that mean that we should all loose our jobs for something we say after we finish work?

Would there be anyone employed, be it racist, sexist, or anything that is not deemed PC. Even the players say that although unacceptable, he isn't a racist.

How unfortunate, still, at least he can console himself that he does'nt need the money!

These days you don't know whose listening, the walls have ears etc..........

23rd Apr 2004, 09:53
Hee Hee...
I'm not saying I grew up in a very quiet part of the world...BUT...

For historical reasons, my families nickname has been Packy.
That is the nick name everyone called me by at school, work etc until one day at a training college in Oxfordshire an astounded fellow student turned to me and said "Did you hear what he called you?":eek: (One of my mates had shouted across the bar " Hey Packy - what you having?"

I looked dumbfounded (am white Cornish race BTW) and eventually the penny dropped. One had to resort to being called by one's real name from that day forward. :( Except with my old mates who know I don't care!!)

23rd Apr 2004, 10:25
I must admit, I would have liked to think that we are well past name calling and comments like lazy ****ing ni**er. Why not just call him a lazy ****ing bastard? What has the guys colour got to do with it?

23rd Apr 2004, 10:29
I once used the word niggardly in court.

Having a coffee later the Clerk said "you had me worried for a second there"

Subsequently an American official was sacked for using the word in its correct sense - that really is over-sensitive.

tony draper
23rd Apr 2004, 10:32
The ironic thing being that the degree of taboo being placed on the N word guarantees that it will never fall into disuse.
Language changes words fall into disuse,especialy if no great deal is made out of them,for Instance up my way in the fifties and sixties from what I can recal all people of Asian origin were all called Indians, the word Packy only seems to have come into common parlance up here in the last twenty five years or so, my father generation used a word that to my ear sounded much more offensive,***, that is a word that seems to have disapeared entirerly happily.
As I said the N word was never common up here,the word Darkie was used, again that is another word that has disapeared from common usage round here.
I remember reading something dunno if its true or not, It stated that swear words originated when when we lived in tribal groups, on the death of some great tribal leader, in order to ensure his name was remembered forever, the name became taboo,no one could utter it on pain of death, thus ensuring it was only used at times of great stress such as when you hit you thumb with your flint axe,


I suppose insults arose in a similar way,calling people by the words for norty taboo body parts and such.

PS. Ogeltwonk, being the first great leader of the Draper Clan, a word of advice, never call a Draper a Ogeltwonk.

23rd Apr 2004, 10:35
TV and radio news crews have been known to "accidentaly" leave cameras/sound running while they pop out to the loo etc.

Always treat them as live.

23rd Apr 2004, 11:52
Atkinson would never have been pushed to jump if his words had not been broadcast via the live satellite feed. It would have remained in the studio and non-public. But, it was broadcast and he did the right thing by stepping down: private vs public statements.

Not sure the N word will ever go into disuse due to its continuous use in (Gangsta) Rap and Hip Hop.


23rd Apr 2004, 11:55
I will say that I've known Ron Atkinson for a number of years & he is no racist. However, he can be an obtuse guy at times & as befits his background, he lapses into dressing room banter, which I reckon is what he did here. He's also not the most articulate of people & using the words he did is inexcusable, well, he paid the price & that was right. he also jumped, which shows that he does have honour.

I would remind that Ron was instrumental in breaking black players into the English first division, recognising talent & ability for what it is, not the actions of someone who hates black people. Indeed, anyone meeting Ron will come away with the impression of an even handed old fashioned bloke who is without doubt a product of his generation - I doubt he even thought he was being offensive. The whole episode is such a shame & so avoidable - I just hope he doesn't get labelled a racist, because whatever he is, he isn't that.

23rd Apr 2004, 12:18
Does anyone get so upset when such descriptive words to refer to white people are used? Are the use of such words by coloured celebrities so sensationalised and reported? Are they so castigated?

Whilst I don't condone what Ron said. He has realised his mistake, admitted it, appologised and fallen on his sword. He has done more than most to bring forward and encourage coloured footballers into soccer's higher reaches. What more do people want?

Last night's attempt at an interview of Ron hosted by Trevor MacDonald and carried out by one of his mates, was nothing short of a disgrace. Ron was trying to explain himself and put the record straight. He was not allowed to do so. Every time Ron tried, he was stopped and a loaded question, to try to make the situation worse, introduced.

It was not constructive reporting/interviewing in any form, merely a poor attempt to get Ron to dig an even deeper hole for himself and prolong his suffering. It appered that Ron had been conned into giving the interview on the grounds he could explain himself. Unfortunately there was another agenda. Fortunately Ron thought before opening his mouth to answer.

More gutter press/TV reporting, which Britain is now famous for.

I have been of the opinion for some time now that the program "Tonight with Trevor MacDonald" is not worth the airtime and does nothing more than muck rake and reactivate old wounds. The occasional program does have some worth, but these are very few and far between. ITV should take it off the air. I am surprised that MacDonald allows his name to be used in this way. Ok, last night's interview was on the "News at 10.30", but it followed a similar pattern.

Curious Pax
23rd Apr 2004, 13:39
I think Parapunter sums it up best - a sad mistake, but one for which there was only one price to be paid. Check out today's Telegraph for a thoughtful piece by Clive Tyldesley (Atkinson's co-commentator) which also deals with what happened very well in my opinion.

tony draper
23rd Apr 2004, 13:44
Agreed, Trevor MacDonald is a tosser of the first water, and thats not a new opinion with me, his programs now epitomise dumbed down television ,his programs are sensationalist trashy and shallow, as is his interviewing technique.

23rd Apr 2004, 13:49
Curious Pax
I read it earlier and thought the same. superb piece:

Ron shouldn't have said it (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtml;$sessionid$2YEO4LICOIMH3QFIQMFSFGGAVCBQ0IV0?xml=/sport/2004/04/23/sfntyl23.xml&sSheet=/portal/2004/04/23/ixportal.html)

23rd Apr 2004, 14:29
The thought that someone should be required to resign for what could be easily considered as a remark made in the "heat of the moment", resulting in the loss of one's livelihood, is just way over the top. If everyone back in my schooldays from the '70s was treated the same way, unemployment would be a very serious problem in the UK today. Chastise him, try and get him to admit it was an error, by all means. But don't make a mountain out of a molehill and use poisonous chemicals to seek a solution. Having been at the receiving end of similar nefarious and hurtful comments when younger gives me the right to reply. The rest of you white honkies should go back underground where the sun don't shine...! :E

23rd Apr 2004, 14:42
A dead microphone is a very dangerous bit of kit. True indeed Drapes. Reminds me of a story. . . . .

A few years ago, Mrs G dragged me to some important service at a Cathedral in South East England (I shall not name it to protect the innocent).

The Cathedral was full of 'Big-Wigs' from all walks of life; Royalty, Politicians, all manner of important people from the Church of England and, as I said, even Mr & Mrs G! The service was being conducted by the Bishop of the Cathedral and, at the end of the service with great pomp and ceremony the whole Train of people doing the service processed past, whereupon the Bishop gave some sort of final blessing from the back of the Cathedral and disappeared off into some anteroom. At which point, the Bishop, forgetting that his radio-mike was on announced to the hushed tones of the entire Cathedral:


I still have the bruises from the digs that I got in my ribs from the good lady! :D ;) :D ;)

23rd Apr 2004, 15:08
Nobody told this man it was an offensive word...


Strange though that, they can use the word freely and no offence is taken or recognised, but if another does, it is.

If that isn't racist in itself, what is.

By the way, Love thy Neighbour was, and still is numerically, one of the most watched sitcoms by all races creeds or colours.

A recent documentary about the programme hit 13 million viewers.

So to be totally non racist and PC what can i call them ?

Is it racist to call me a Brit, a term which is freely and frequently used?

23rd Apr 2004, 15:38
SS (not nice initials):- The word is offensive if it is used in an offensive manner.

Forget Guy Gibson's dog. Mores were very different then. Forget the thoughts and morals of a bunch of soap-watchers. Not relevant to racism in football today.

No, it's not racist to call you a Brit, if that's what you are.

And if you need to refer to them (as you so offensively put it) and wish to lump all people of one colour or race together instead of referring to individuals, then in the UK the term black is perfectly acceptable.

23rd Apr 2004, 15:47
Hugs, but I'm only lightly tanned! The blackbirds have the right idea, here let me turnover a bit more earth for you... :\

23rd Apr 2004, 15:49
What I find strange is that when the word nig*er is used by black people it appears to be acceptable

23rd Apr 2004, 16:01
Of course its acceptable when black people use it!! The word was always a derogatory term white people used to describe black people. It was never a casual or innoffensive description, it was always laden with hate.

Atkinson is a prize tosser, always has been. The worst kind of little englander. I love the way he came out and said how he had worked with more black people then probably any manager!!

As if society should be grateful to him for putting up with "them!""

23rd Apr 2004, 17:19

It's surprising how many people really tan when they get out here and exposed to the sun and go dark brown. If they think long and hard enough about it, they will realise that somewhere down the line their family are not pure white, but they think they are!
The same goes for pale coloured people.
It's time all this colour sh1t went away. It's getting like religions!
Used by certain people for their own ends.

Oneworld 22

How many "travellers" has your Country dumped on the "little Englander" by recent law changes?
How long before someone makes a suggestion that County Cork is now designated a new state for "travellers" just like Israel was created for the Jews? Bet you wouldn't like that!

If you haven't realised, this race, creed, and colour thing just totally p's me off!:*

tony draper
23rd Apr 2004, 18:34
Said it before, the best thing for this country would be for all the people in it to grow their skin a bit thicker, no matter what its colour.
To many debates discusions or questions being asked are brought to a abrupt end by use of the racist card,this of course suits the politician just fine.

23rd Apr 2004, 18:37
Come on Tony, you can't tell me you think the use of the word "N***er" is harmless???

tony draper
23rd Apr 2004, 19:00
No I was not refering to this case , the man was a fool, you have to be walking round with your head up your arse not to realise that word is now the ultimate taboo, you don't even think it now let alone say it.
What I mean is a certain section of our PC pushing society use racism as a club to beat the rest of us with questions into silence and it has to be said, a sections of our ethnic minority community are not above using the racism charge to gain advantage.

23rd Apr 2004, 19:01
Phew!!!! You had me worried there for a moment!!

23rd Apr 2004, 19:15

Nice to know I'm not alone in my views.

Time for some..er older people..who should know better to grow up! And I'm old according to Wholigan on another thread!

off watch
23rd Apr 2004, 20:19
In the 1930's, Henry Hall & the BBC Dance Orchestra recorded a song called "The Sun Has Got His Hat On", which contains the line "He's been telling n*****s" out in Timbuctoo".
This song was included in the musical "Me and My Gal".
It was quite obviously acceptable to use the expression in those days, as was the use of numerous descriptive slang words to describe foreigners by our Armed Forces in WW2. Since the 70's the thought police have ensured that these have become non-PC. Bearing in mind Big Ron is 65, I fear he used what for most of his life would have been considered a common descriptive remark in the same way that Ozmates call us "whinging Poms". If we are going down that road, woe betide the next "Septic" (septic tank = Yank) that calls us Brits "Limeys" - we should sue the b*****d !!! :ok:

23rd Apr 2004, 20:42
What about the poor sod on Radio 2 today, who emailed in on the Jeremy Vine Atkinson debate and said that a colleague had been disciplined for saying in a moment of hunger "Jeez, I could kill an Indian" Aren't we in danger of getting a wee bit Politically Correct here.?? My old Mum was really lucky in Post War Glasgow to get away with buying me a Golliwog to cuddle as a child. Ok. Ok. Before anybody tells me I am being ridiculous, I have since then gone on to live and work for 25 years overseas in many Third World and Second World and First World countries, so I reckon I am qualified to comment, and I can lay my hand on my heart and say that I treat people as they treat me and as I think they should be treated. If they portray themselves as berks....that is how I view them., White, Brown, Black or Purple. Fair comment, or must I take their colour/ethnicity into account as well.???
Having said all that, I would NEVER be dumb enough to make a comment like Atkinson made on or off the mike. he can hardly complain when the world comes in about his ears.

24th Apr 2004, 02:52
Its ironic that Abdul Hamza has been in the news as well this week. That guy can spout racist crap all day, and say how much he hates everybody in the west to a huge audience, yet no one lays a finger on him.

Ron Atkinson makes a slight mistake and has to resign from his job(s).

The UK is a complete ar5e at times.

24th Apr 2004, 07:06
And if you need to refer to them (as you so offensively put it) and wish to lump all people of one colour or race together instead of referring to individuals, then in the UK the term black is perfectly acceptable.
The reason I said them was because I did'nt know how to refer to blacks (which you tell me is ok now) without being offensive.
No, it's not racist to call you a Brit, if that's what you are.
So it's OK to say Paki then if thats what they are?

So when an Irishman used to call me a Brit B~~~~~~d, that was OK because thats what I am?

If this black is from Niger, is it OK to call him niger ?

24th Apr 2004, 08:30
For decades no Protestant could play for Glasgow Celtic, and for even more years no Roman Catholic could play for Glasgow Rangers.

Eventually it all became more liberal. One Protestant was playing for Celtic, and after a game he was in the changing room, much depressed. A kindly colleague noticed and asked what was the problem?

Well, the sad one replied, he was upset at fans shouting "P*p*st b*st*rd" at him.

Oh, said the other, you shouldn't let that get to you. They shout that at me all the time.

Oh sure, said the sad one, but you ARE a P*p*st b*st*rd.

Is there no room any more for common sense and a sense of humour?

24th Apr 2004, 14:04
Ron Atkinson - I thought he was quite good in that Blackadder series, Ooops :}

Too many people too easily offended these days. Orchestrated, mock horror at "words" whilst accepting anti social behaviour and street violence in every City in the Country as society's fault.

Not a word that I would use anyway.