Dear Mrs Coulter, about your recent outburst against Soccer…

This is not, by any means, a pastime for “little girls”, as you think it is; and, maybe, this shows your, sorry to say, intellectual ignorance...

Mrs Coulter,

I, too, have learned about your recent outburst against Soccer, more precisely against Football, Association Football, the Sport codified in Egland 150 years ago, roughly. This Game was, indeed, born, developed, disciplined in England and refined by the Scots in the 1880s. This Sport, therefore, is not bt any means an “invention”, as it seems you erroneously believe, of “short”, “swarthy”, immigrants hailing from warm waters… This said with the greatest repect for immigrants; you probably are, too, an offspring of a stock of immigrants (but not “swarthy”…). Association Football was conceived and it grew as a form of Football different from Rugby. From the Public Schools such as Harrow, Chartehouse, Eton, it soon made inroads into the English, British working-class and middle class. It was, and it still is, a bodily contact Sport in which hard knocks are given and taken. In the big “turmoil”, this Game reached heights of artistry in the 1890s already, mainly thanks to the Scots; the Scots with flair, imagination; with the deft touch. Broken teeth, broken noses, broken legs have always been a constant occurrence in Association Football.

So, this is not, by any means, a pastime for “little girls”, as you think it is; and, maybe, this shows your, sorry to say, intellectual ignorance. I still laugh whenever I happen to set my eyes on American Football players… Players wearing helmets… Players provided with armoury… It certainly is hilarious. Association Football players wear no armoury, in many cases just shinguards and nothing else. It’s exactly the same thing in Rugby. Rugby, in my view, is even more demanding than American Football; I’m talking from experience: I still play the Rugby Game. As in Association Football, rugbymen just wear jerseys, shorts, socks; casquettes, in some cases. And yet Rugby tackles, unleashed at full speed, may be ‘ferocious’, even crippling. It takes nerves, muscle, flair and vision to cope with the demands of Association Football and Rugby (the latter’s official name being: Rugby Football).

In American Football the longest action lasts three, four seconds at most, whereas in Soccer and Rugby it may last minutes, which is an eternity.

Ms Coulter, before you speak, be sure you know what you’re going to talk about. Always remember Socrates: “I know that I do not know”…


Have a good day,

Toni De Santoli

La Voce di New York’s contributor from Rome


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