Features, People & Parties

Social Media backlash against SportsCentre hosts

By Ekta Mukhi Canada takes pride in being one of the most progressive, diverse and multicultural societies in the 21st century. However, Tuesday night was a clear wake up call for our country, when reporters Gurdeep Ahluwalia and Nabil Karim hosted TSN’s Sports Centre. This created a rage, and twitter was an outlet for many to leash out their racist comments, as some Canadian fans could not digest the fact that two brown men were hosting the show versus Jay Ontrait and Dan O’toole whom they are accustomed to seeing on screen. Screen Shot 2013-02-21 at 1.31.53 PM For the record, Ahluwalia and Karim have been acclaimed anchors and reporters, with years of accomplishments to back them up. It’s shocking, let alone heartbreaking, that we still live in a society where people can’t move past the color of someone’s skin and instead, automatically assume their lack of knowledge on the subject matter. Stewart Johnson, President of TSN, stepped in and responded,"in this day and age, it's unfortunate we continue to witness examples of ignorance and intolerance on social media". Whilst TSN jumped in and acted in response to the racist messages fired at both their SportsCentre hosts, Karim and Ahluwalia also generated a significant amount of support from several people. As Karim said, “ with the wonders of Twitter you can re-tweet and things just go viral, but I should mention and this is really important…there were a lot of positive messages and I’ve has an overflow – and I’m sure Gurdeep does too – of positive messages on Twitter and I’ve been getting them all day.” “The way it sort of changed throughout the day was sort of switching over from negative to positive, … a lot of people took it upon themselves to jump on the folks who said something negative or racist and correct it that way.” On one hand, it’s relieving to see people stand up to racism and act in support of one another. But the question still remains, why does the issue of race still arise in this day and age. It’s 2013 people, wake up!  

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