Harlow anti-racists take the knee in solidarity with England footballers

News / Tue 20th Jul 2021 at 03:35pm

ON Sunday morning anti racists gathered at the Obelisk in Harlow Town Centre to demonstrate their solidarity with the ‘three lions’ of the England football team, Rashford, Sancho and Saka, who all received racist abuse after missing penalties against Italy in the Euro 2020 final.

Paul Topley, from Harlow Stand Up to Racism (SUTR), hosted the event and introduced the four speakers before those present took the knee to demonstrate their solidarity with the footballers. In his introduction Paul spoke of the hypocrisy of the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson and the Home Secretary, Priti Patel, who claimed to be disgusted by the racism suffered by the three young players but who had refused to condemn those fans who booed the England team for taking the knee in opposition to racism.

Lukas, from Bishops Stortford SUTR, spoke of the importance of  being there on Sunday to show that modern Britain, like the England team, is diverse and inclusive. He said that the team represents “the best of Britain, not the worst”. Like Paul, he spoke of the hypocrisy of some politicians and said that Marcus Rashford had demonstrated what a true hero was by “feeding the children of working class families” when the government refused to do so. 

Saira, from Harlow SUTR, watched the Euro final with a growing sense of dread. She spoke of a “visceral change” in her body when Rashford stepped up to take the penalty and prayed that he wouldn’t miss it because she knew what was to come. When Sancho and Saka also missed she said that she knew that, as all three of the players were black, we were about to witness an outpouring of racism.

Following the speeches, more than thirty people who had been listening, knelt to take the knee in solidarity with the players and in opposition to racism. They were joined by several passers-by.

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8 Comments for Harlow anti-racists take the knee in solidarity with England footballers:

Paul Henderson
2021-07-20 21:10:07

Anti-Racists? Any decent person condemns the racist outbursts by a very small minority who abused the footballers. That said, this event looks like it is political and militant. People can beat condemn racism simply by not being racist. Those who do not support the political gesturing of the BLM and actually boo those bringing a political gesture into sport have the right to express their opinion as much as do those who take the knee. At the end of the day, freedom of expression is paramount. That can never be a point of negotiation in a free society. This demo had a audience of 30 to 40 in a town of around 87000! Hardly newsworthy.

2021-07-21 05:59:06

I totally agree with your comments and also would like to know where did this saying "taking the knee" originate its not even correct grammar, just say kneeling down or refer to them as knee benders.

iain lindsay
2021-07-21 09:54:00

Bowing and scraping to a Marxist movement that wants to create a lawless, anarchist state that will do nothing to quell racial tension. Multiculturalism is a failed social experiment that has reaped enormous damage in this country and created ghetto areas in some parts of the country. These liberal hand-wringers and communists should be ashamed of themselves for showing support to such an organisation.

2021-07-21 11:49:32

These idiots that read the Mail, Sun and Telegraph and call it "political gesturing". Some even call it Marxism without knowing what that actually means. It's really quite simple, black people globally (as racism is global) have decided to stand up against racism. To show support you take the knee. Simple as that really... if you boo and as a white person think you know better and call it something else...... Well then.......work it out...

2021-07-21 13:14:47

What if you boo as a black person Simon, work that out.

2021-07-21 14:45:21

Simon "kneeling down" or being a "knee bender" is nothing to do with racism it's people asking forgiveness for things that happened 200 years ago not last week.

2021-07-22 14:31:00

"Taking the knee has long been a symbolic gesture for peaceful protesters, campaigning against racial violence and systemic racism" , i wouldnt boo it personally as some do at football matches but im not a fan of taking the knee as the above picture indicates its associsated too much with the BLM organization which want to defund the poilce and end capitalism not to mention cancel culture as well, however i do agree 100% racism in any form has no part in our society.

2021-07-22 14:34:30

you cant erase history as some seem to think you can you can only learn from it.

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