Tuesday, August 19, 2008

PR Gaff

The story about the mens and womens Spanish basketball team stretching their eyes to simulate Chinese facial features has been doing the rounds in mainstream and social media recently.

The newspaper ad, for a Spanish courier company called Seur, was approved by the Spanish sporting authorities. This is yet another faux pas by the Spanish (used generally as a stereotype), who have not had the best track record in the fight against racism. People still remember Luis Aragones and his comments towards Thierry Henry and the horrible gorilla chants to the English black football players. This does not put the Spanish in a very good light at all.

I wasn't going to touch on this subject as I thought it wasn't worth while discussing, we all know what the Spanish are like - right? Well, after much consideration, I personally wouldn't go as far as to say the Spanish (again in general) are racist. I've been to Spain many times and met some very friendly people. I think this is more a case of naivety and misunderstanding of what does and what doesn't cause offence rather than an outright attack at a race of people.
All in all though, Spain could really do with fewer negative stories about its racial standpoint.

Thanks for reminding me I have 'slitty eyes' though, as Prince Phillip (1986) would put it!!

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