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At Champions League Final, the Fans Weren’t the Danger


Despite the proven fact that their interpretation of last Saturday evening is demonstrably, provably unfaithful, they’ve stood by it because the choice is unpalatable: Admitting that the French security services got this one unsuitable would mean admitting that they’ve also got their approach to policing French domestic soccer unsuitable and that they’re probably going to get next 12 months’s Rugby World Cup and the 2024 Paris Olympics unsuitable, too.

Most of all, they’ve stood by it because, deep down, they know it can work. They know, at the very least, that it would create the illusion of another set of facts. They know, too, that much of the heavy lifting will probably be done by prejudice, by those that would indicate, archly, that this does appear to occur to Liverpool fans or England fans or simply soccer fans as an entire an awful lot.

They know that while social media allowed all of those images and videos and firsthand accounts to be surfaced and to be spread, citizen journalism is a much less potent force online than deep-rooted partisanship. They know that the latter will overpower the previous in some unspecified time in the future, at the very least enough to muddy the waters, to obscure not only this specific truth but additionally the concept of truth, to make sure that some blame is apportioned elsewhere.

Plenty, definitely, have seized on the chance to assume that Liverpool fans, or English fans, or perhaps a certain stripe of soccer fans as an entire have to be at fault. Plenty have decided that this have to be the primary time that anyone has ever tried to realize access to an event through the use of a fake ticket, without wondering whether perhaps a few of those people were victims, reasonably than perpetrators, of a criminal offense, without asking if perhaps that’s the type of thing the authorities ought to be prepared to come across.

And yet the temptation to side with the authorities, within the aftermath of an event like this, reasonably than those that are different from you simply when it comes to the team they support is a dangerous one.

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