Posts Tagged ‘sports’

Taking racist sports logos to court: Sports, tropes and prospects for change

November 25th, 2016 by Safia Lakhani

This article was first published on

On October 14, 2016, the Superior Court of Ontario heard an application for an injunction preventing the display, broadcast, and dissemination of the team name and logo of the “Cleveland Indians,” a U.S. baseball team scheduled to play at the Rogers Centre later that day. The team, whose offensive logo has long been the subject of criticism amongst Indigenous Americans, was playing against the Toronto Blue Jays as part of the American League Championship Series. While the court refused to grant the injunction, the application has called attention to the issue of racial stereotyping and has raised questions about the viability of addressing this issue through the courts and/or human rights tribunals in Canada.

Continue reading “Taking racist sports logos to court: Sports, tropes and prospects for change”

From Rio to Tokyo, gender discrimination in sport continues

August 25th, 2016 by Katie Douglas

This article was first published on

Caster Semenya, a South-African woman, ran and won the women’s 800-metre race at the 2016 Rio Olympics on Saturday night. Semenya has hyperandrogenism, a condition that causes her body to produce more testosterone than the average woman. Controversy around Semenya dates back to 2009 when she was forced to undergo blood and chromosome tests and a gynecological exam to prove that she is a woman. Many have argued that her high testosterone levels give her an unfair athletic advantage and she should either take medication to bring her testosterone levels in line with those of average women or be barred from competing.

This controversy brings to light one of society’s most persistent and destructive myths — that sex is a binary concept and our deeply entrenched view of the two genders and their respective roles is to be upheld in all areas from domestic tasks to sporting competitions. Athletes like Semenya are important because her participation raises the arbitrary and exclusive nature of this falsehood and the question of what society is going to do about it on an international and high‑profile stage. Continue reading “From Rio to Tokyo, gender discrimination in sport continues”

Homophobia in pro-sports is a big problem: we’ve got a long way to go

April 25th, 2016 by Michael Hackl

While sitting in the penalty box during the third period of the April 19 playoff game between the Chicago Blackhawks and St. Louis Blues, Andrew Shaw of the Blackhawks shouted what appeared to be a homophobic slur at somebody on the ice.  After the game, Shaw was asked what he had said and answered “emotions are high … I don’t know what I said.”  Twitter comments on the incident ranged from those that took issue with Shaw’s apparent acts to others that, unfortunately, suggested that what had happened was no big deal.  Let’s be clear – it is a big deal, and should be treated as such. Continue reading “Homophobia in pro-sports is a big problem: we’ve got a long way to go”