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"A monkey's place is in the cage and not in the Olympics": twitter a breeding ground for olympic racism

BRENNAN N. JOHNSON Special to the AmNews | 8/6/2012, 2:25 p.m.
"A monkey's place is in the cage and not in the Olympics": twitter a breeding ground for olympic racism

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"A monkey's place is in the cage and not in the Olympics": twitter a breeding ground for olympic racism

Social media is both a blessing and a curse. For the 2012 Olympic Games, set in London, fans can get an inside look into the lives of their favorite athletes via their twitter posts but offensive and racist tweets also seem to be running rampant.

The Olympic Games usually bring out the patriotism in those watching and rooting for athletes from their country. However, lately there has been so much negativity against the athletes that civilians are forgetting one of the main concepts that the games is about; pride.The latest racist incident stemming from the Olympics is backlash against Brazilian Olympian judo fighter, Rafaela Silva and Gabby Douglas, gymnast of The United States of America. Brazilian judo fighter, Rafaela Silva was eliminated in the 16th round of the 57-kilograms division on Monday. Immediately following this incident, Brazilian citizens took their negative opinions to none other than Twitter. There were some tweeters who were genuinely upset when Silva was disqualified from the match by using an illegal leg-grab that cost Silva the possibility of winning a medal. Silva immediately went to twitter to see what her fans and those watching thought of the fight, instead of receiving encouragement, she was insulted. Tweets displayed complete hatred against Silva because of the color of her skin,"A monkey's place is in the cage and not in the Olympics.""You're no better than anyone else because you're BLACK."Once the Brazilian Olympic Committee found out about the racist tweets made against Silva they thought about taking legal action against those who made such negative comments."Brazil is a multiracial country and should not tolerate any type of attitude stimulating any kind of segregation," the committee said.As a result of the racist comments Silva has made her twitter page private and it will remain that way she says.In other racist Olympic news, many think Gabby Douglas is not receiving the support that she should from the Black community while competing. Instead of focusing on the skills that Douglas displays in gymnastics, spectators are too focused on Douglas' ponytail, claiming that her hair is a mess.Douglas is one of the few black gymnasts ever to compete in the Olympics and is the first black woman to take the all-around individual title. Apparently that still is not enough since twitter users and numerous African American blogs are constantly criticizing her hair."I just hate the way her hair looks with all those pins and gel. I wish someone could have helped her make it look better since she's being seen all over the world. She's representing for black women everywhere," an anonymous tweeter said.Douglas is in uniform when she is performing. Gymnast's hair generally is slicked back into a ponytail or a bun. Douglas appears to be using a lot of pins and gel to hold her hair back which has struck a lot of nerves for women in the black community. Douglas made a statement back to all those who are so concerned about her hair saying, "I don't know where this is coming from. What's wrong with my hair? I just made history and people are focused on my hair? It can be bald or short, it doesn't matter about (my) hair."