Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Kantian Idiots

I am not sure how many times I have heard commentators at this World Cup describe a violent challenge as "not a foul" or "not a card" on the grounds that the contact was "unintentional". I don't know if this is a unique foible of anglophone commentators, but it is complete and utter nonsense. "Intent" is simply not an issue in the sport of football.

Why these "experts" have confused Kant's Categorical Imperative with the Laws of the Game, I don't know. Nor do I entirely understand how they think a ref is supposed to determine a player's maxim when contact occurs. All I can do is quote rule 12, which says that a foul occurs when:
  • a player commits any of the following six offences in a manner considered by the referee to be careless, reckless or using excessive force: a) kicks or attempts to kick an opponent; b) trips or attempts to trip an opponent; c) jumps at an opponent; d) charges an opponent; e) strikes or attempts to strike an opponent; f) pushes an opponent
  • a player commits any of the following four offences: a) tackles an opponent to gain possession of the ball, making contact with the opponent before touching the ball; b) holds an opponent; c) spits at an opponent; d) handles the ball deliberately (except for the goalkeeper within his own penalty area)
So, if (as happened a couple of minutes ago) Ballack hits Materazzi studs up, after going for a ball, it is completely irrelevant whether he "meant" it. What matters is if contact was made and the ref thinks it was careless/reckless/ excessive. Immanuel's First Formulation doesnt enter into it.


Blogger schuey said...

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3:44 AM  

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