Sky Sports pundit Matt Le Tissier says he is ‘reviewing’ the use of Black Lives Matter badges on the TV channel because he holds concerns over the movement’s ideologies.
Since the killing of George Floyd by a white policeman in the United States last month there have been global protests about racism and racial discrimination, and the world of sport is now heavily involved in support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
Presenters and guests on Sky Sports have been seen wearing Black Lives Matter badges when appearing on programmes, but now Le Tissier says he has held talks with his bosses about this.
Matt Le Tissier says he is reviewing the use of Black Lives Matter badges on Sky Sports
The Southampton legend replied to a tweet accusing him of ‘promoting a far-left ideology and said he had spoken with officials about the matter.
Black Lives Matter encourage the slogan #DefundThePolice amid outcry over alleged violence by police towards black people, saying they ‘call for an end to the systemic racism that allows this culture of corruption to go unchecked and our lives to be taken’.
Le Tissier kicked off the debate by urging his followers to remove him on Twitter if they were from the ‘far right or far left’.
The ex-Southampton star asked Twitter followers to remove him if they were far left or far right
‘Morning peeps, polite request, if you’re far right or far left do me and yourselves a favour and unfollow me, it’ll be good for yours and our mental health as I couldn’t give 2 hoots how many followers I have I won’t be offended.’
One Twitter user replied: ‘If you are central Matt why wear a badge promoting a far left ideology?’
The 51-year-old wrote back: ‘That’s a good point and one which I’ve made to my boss already.’
Another said: ‘Maybe you should review your BLM badge wearing’, to which he responded: ‘I am reviewing’.
Le Tissier said he was ‘reviewing’ his use of the Black Lives Matter badge on Sky Sports shows
There has been plenty of reaction and debate following Le Tissier’s tweet, with another user saying he ‘hated this badging of the left and right’.
And one replied telling him ‘that BLM badge is a bit dodgy’.
Speaking about their views on the police on the Black Lives Matter website, the movement says Floyd’s death was a ‘breaking point’ and ‘a reminder that, for black people, law enforcement doesn’t protect or save our lives. They often threaten and take them’.
Instead, they have called for ‘a national defunding of police’, asking for ‘investment in our communities and the resources to ensure Black people not only survive, but thrive’.
Sky Sports said Le Tissier had approached them about wearing a Black Lives Matter badge ‘as a discussion point’ and the former midfielder was told he was not obligated to wear one.