The Sun have shown double-standards in their reporting on English and Algerian celebrations.
The Algerian mens football teams run to the final of the Africa Cup of Nations final has naturally sparked celebrations among the Algerian diaspora in Europe.
Yet the right-wing press seem to have a problem with these celebrations.
“Mum killed and baby critical after being mown down by Algerian football fan’s car as riots erupt across France celebrating Africa Cup victory” a headline in the Sun screamed.
Sounds bad right but how true is it? Well, a mum was killed and a baby was critical after being hit with a car – and that’s a tragedy.
But, in France and the UK, similar tragedies happen more days than not. Cars are dangerous things.
Did the car crash have anything to do with Algerian celebrations though? It’s not clear that it did.
According to the Ouest France newspaper, the driver of the car was Frenc-h-Moroccan, as were the victims.
Ouest France spoke to Raymonde, one of the victim’s neighbours, at a memorial vigil held in her honour.
When asked if the driver was supporting the Algerian team, Raymonde described this as a ‘fausse polemique’ – a false argument.
“These things happen every night,” Raymonde added and he called for speed bumps or roundabouts to be installed in the local area.
But the Sun is not interested in speed bumps, blaming Algerians gets far more shares.
After the next game, there was similar reporting. Riyad Mahrez’s late free-kick winner led to celebrations in London with Algerian fans letting off fireworks.
The Sun called this “havoc” and said “a police vehicle was smashed by some football fans during the mayhem”.
The Metropolitan Police were far less alarmist, saying there were no arrests or injuries but that “a police vehicle has sustained damage to its windshield”.
The Sun cites no other evidence of a police car being “smashed up” although a reporter for the I tweeted that a police car was “trashed” by having its windshield jumped on.
The Sun also leads with the quote “it’s getting scary” – an adaptation of a tweet from the same I reporter who said “Ok, it’s getting a bit scary now”.
No doubt it was a bit scary and there was some silly behaviour (ie the police car) – as there always is during mass celebrations.
Let’s not forget that when England beat Sweden to reach the World Cup semi-final, some fans went into an IKEA store singing and jumping up and down on the furniture – which was a bit silly and could have been scary for staff.
Presumably the Sun denounced this havoc in the same way they did with the Algerians?
No, they described the “jubilant England fans” merely as “cheeky” and fluffed out the report with funny memes and a light-hearted statement from IKEA.
Joe Lo is a reporter for Left Foot Forward
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