Ross Taylor talks about dealing with racism. In “Brown Face In Vanilla Line-Up,”
Taylor described instances of discrimination he witnessed while playing the guitar in his autobiography, “Black & White.”
Ross Taylor, a legend in New Zealand cricket, announced his early retirement from international play this year at the same time as his autobiography was released on Thursday. Taylor was candid in his discussion of the instances of discrimination he ran into while acting in the book “Black & White.” He talked about how it would come up in remarks from some staff members and officials as well as in locker room conversation. While acknowledging the “insensitivity” and lack of empathy in the remarks, he insisted that they were not made from a “racist stance.”
Taylor, who is partly Samoan, stated that he had been “an aberration” for a sizable chunk of his career.
“Cricket is a fairly white sport in New Zealand. For the majority of my career, I’ve been an outlier. A white face in the midst of a sea of brown faces Stuff.co.nz claims that he wrote in his book.
According to Taylor, there are challenges that “many aren’t immediately apparent to your colleagues or the cricketing public.”
“The talk in the locker rooms frequently serves as a barometer. Ross, you’re a decent man in part, but which part is good? Once upon a time, a teammate would remark to me. You are completely unaware of my allusion. I had a good feeling that I did, he continued.
Other athletes also had to put up with comments that targeted their race. A Pakeha would probably assume, “Oh, that’s okay, it’s just some banter,” upon hearing comments of that nature. Although he is hearing it as a white person, he is not the target audience. No one objects, and no one corrects them as a result.
He asserted that the athletes were constantly in a challenging situation because the people who were the targets of these statements were at fault.
“Therefore, targets are accountable. You consider getting them up, but you hold off out of concern that you won’t create a bigger argument or be accused of using the race card by converting a friendly talk into racism. Although it’s easier to develop a thick skin and let things go, is that the best option? He was cool.
“Shortly after Mike “Roman” Sandle became the Black Caps manager, he revealed to Taylor’s wife Victoria that the Maori and Island players had financial difficulties when he was in charge of the Blues rugby club. After Victoria laughed it off, Taylor said, “so if Ross wants to talk about it… Mike presumably understood very quickly that, despite his good intentions, his conclusions had been a bit rapid.”
He also talked about a comment made by previous coach Mike Hesson that wasn’t meant to be.
“Mike Hesson was seated next to me in the Koru Lounge at the Dunedin Airport when I re-joined the team after the captaincy dispute. He had come straight from his house. “My cleaner is Samoan,” he remarked. She is a lovely woman who works very hard and is quite trustworthy. I could only manage to say, “Oh, cool.”
“So I have no doubt that Roman and Hess and the guys who engaged in the ‘banter,’ would be dissatisfied to find that their remarks struck with a thud,” Taylor continued.
I don’t think for a second that they had a racist agenda, let me be clear about that. The seasoned batter explained, “I think they lacked empathy and were unconsiderate, failing to put themselves in the other person’s shoes.
What the targets perceive as casual chat is actually unpleasant to them since it makes them aware of their differences. Instead of “You’re one of us, mate,” the message is “You’re one of them.”
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