Well maybe just a little bit
Last January I wrote a post for Big Bible entitled ‘blogger beware‘. In it, one of the pieces of advice I gave was that bloggers should resist the temptation to blog angry and blog quickly when a story attracts their attention. It is for this reason that I am only blogging about this story today.
Yesterday the news was announced that the annual football transfer window had closed, with some £630m spent on transfers across the world. When the figure was first announced on the radio, the breakfast show presenter said that it was a lot of money, but that it was after all, the ‘entertainment business’ and that therefore it was somehow understandable. I am not at all sure I can agree. As you can see, the tweet below generated a fair bit of response.
Still reeling from this, I came across a statistic from the UNHCR that one person becomes a refugee in Syria every fifteen seconds (you can see that in graphic form here). A few seconds on the calculator revealed that every fifteen seconds, whilst a person in Syria has their life pulled out from under them, a wealthy Spanish football club spends £405 on their latest acquisition. Statistics of that kind seem so out of balance that you can almost feel the world itself wobbling on its axis.
The problem, having made these observations and comparisons, is what to do with them. If football clubs stopped spending these grotesque amounts of money tomorrow it would not stop the refugee crisis in Syria. If a relief worker who needs to wind down after a tough day of dealing with the fallout of war needs to watch some football, she or he should not be made to feel guilty about it. The one thing does not necessarily affect the other. Some (unconnected) thoughts follow.
- Can we make enough noise in the social media space to make people join the dots, as demonstrated above?
- Can huge football clubs with money to burn start taking a serious responsibility for channeling some of their vast wealth towards this refugee crisis?
- Do we have enough contacts with top flight footballers to urge them to donate a day/ a week’s wages towards humanitarian relief in Syria?
- How are half-times and display screens being used at football matches to direct attention to the world beyond the football stadium?
When there was a crisis on the football pitch last year after the collapse of Fabrice Muamba the social media space exploded with 685,721 tweets with the Hashtags #PrayForMuamba and #Pray4Muamba . Isn’t it time we made some noise again?