Whether he had just finished binge-watching Narcos or maybe he had withdrawal symptoms of another nature, the ‘Scottish sports journalist of the year’ Keith Jackson decided it was time to use Alfredo Morelos’ Colombian nationality to bring the country’s drug cartel history into a piece about the Rangers striker, writes Andy Muirhead.
Banned by both the Celtic and Rangers hierarchies over the past few years due to his scribblings, Jackson is now resigned to sitting in a pub scribbling his thoughts down while drinking whisky and eating Haggis, neeps and tatties – because all Scots are stereotypical Whisky drinking Haggis eaters!
Jackson’s latest diatribe was condemned by Show Racism the Red Card, who said: “People in the media, should take their responsibility seriously and take out opportunities to send out positive messages of inclusion and equality.”
Since moving to Rangers from HJK Helsinki in June, Morelos has scored eight goals in ten games in all competitions and yet rather than praising the young Colombian for what has been a terrific start to his Ibrox career, Jackson – who is supposedly the cream of Scottish sports journalism – chooses to belittle him with references to Colombia drug cartels and a drug cartel leader, Pablo Escobar, who died three years before Morelos was born.
Does the Daily Record hierarchy think Jackson’s article was acceptable? Do they agree with Jackson’s stereotyping of Morelos and all Colombians in such a manner? They must do as they allowed his diatribe to be published.
Would they have allowed such stereotyping if Jackson was discussing the striker’s race or religion? So why do they allow this form of abuse? And abuse it is – it fits into the term ‘National Origin Discrimination’ and in many workplaces, such abuse is a sackable offence whether it was deemed to be a joke or not.
Show Racism the Red Card’s statement continued: “We each have an individual or collective responsibility to ensure that we are not contributing to an environment where racism and other forms of prejudice are allowed to flourish and try to effectively challenge it when we see, hear or feel it.
“We will all feel disgusted and outraged by the act of genocide – the ultimate expression of prejudice, and we may feel like we would never consider physically hurting someone or attacking them for their skin colour, nationality, religion or culture, but by accepting these stereotypes and telling racist jokes, we are actually providing support for those few who do.
“While we do not believe that Keith Jackson is racist, his words propagate racial stereotypes and serve to entrench divisive ideas about marginalised communities. It is however, a mistake that is easily made, we see it often in our workshops with young people and adults alike and that is why education is important, to dispel misinformation and give a person the opportunity to understand why something is wrong as opposed to simply telling them it is wrong.
“Not all of us have had the opportunity to receive anti-racism education and people just simply aren’t aware of what constitutes racism.”
Jackson is regularly targeting the internet bampots for what they post online, yet he is given carte blanche by the Record to ‘propagate racial stereotypes’ of Colombians, would they allow him to do this to Blacks, Asians, the disabled or specific religions?
What next for Jackson? Making potato and famine references while writing an article about Jonny Hayes or Anthony Stokes?
In January 2015, Jackson wrote a piece titled ‘Celtic v Rangers used to have it all, now there's just hatred and bitterness’ in which he hits out at fans online, he said: “[Twitter is] a digital breeding ground for card-carrying bampots and extremists of all denominations, it never ceases to amaze just how much rancid hostility and barking insanity can be squeezed into 140 characters or less.
“Often it is a place where the very dullest of wits go to be unburdened and emptied out on to a screen.
“More often than not, as will without doubt be the case this week and beyond, it quickly degenerates into online loutishness and a feeding frenzy for the terminally unhinged. Already, the build-up is dominated by anger and insults.”
Over two years on from those words, it seems that Jackson is now resorting to his own form of ‘barking insanity’ and ‘loutishness’ to justify a salary from a newspaper whose circulation is dropping dramatically each year.
If Jackson is the ‘cream’ of the Scottish Sports Journalism fraternity then no wonder the newspaper industry is on its knees begging for survival. But rather than improving upon their content and what they offer to their readers, the likes of the Record with Jackson and Parks in their ranks produce inflammatory articles merely to get the hits online or for an extra issue or two to be sold.
The Record seems to be content with individuals like Jackson producing such clickbait ‘works of art’ as they try to hold off the inevitable forced redundancies when circulations get to a point where they can no longer justify keeping an egotistical drunkard on their wage bill.
The digital world, that Jackson seems to loathe with every passing sip of whisky, may not have the full access that newspaper journalists have, but they are certainly leading the way in content. From in-depth interviews to long-form essays on issues within our game to tactical analysis of games – the digital world, the bampots and bloggers are leading the way and it clearly makes Jackson sick to his stomach.
Or maybe it is his late night binge sessions coming back to haunt him?
Either way, you won’t be seeing Keith Jackson’s persistently red face at Ibrox or Celtic Park anytime soon as we are all now witness to his career dying a slow painful death.
Last Ditch Tackle is unashamedly passionate about Scottish football, with a heavy Celtic slant.