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Shivers dismisses racism allegations November 15, 2006

Posted by C.A.R.D in Black, Card, Citizens Against Racism and Discrimination, Discrimination, Racism, racism and discrimination, Racist, White.

Allegations of racism are marring the aftermath of the Saskatchewan Roughriders’ CFL season.

In a halftime radio interview during the Riders’ season-ending loss to the B.C. Lions on Sunday, former team president Tom Shepherd called ex-general manager Roy Shivers a “racist.”

Shepherd, a Regina businessman and longtime team booster who has been involved with the Riders’ organization for years, was responding to media reports about an interview Shivers gave to a Toronto reporter.

In that published report, Shivers, who is black, indicated that his mid-season firing seemed to have been connected to his skin colour.

During the Sunday interview on a private radio station, Shepherd responded by alleging that while Shivers was “calling us racists,” Shivers himself is “the most racist person I know.”

Shepherd, who is white, charged that Shivers refused to acquire wide receiver Jason Clermont — one of the stars for B.C. in the Lions’ 45-18 West division win Sunday — because the Regina-born player was “a slow white receiver.”

But in an interview with CBC News on Monday, Shivers disputed Shepherd’s allegation, calling Shepherd “a big blowhard,” and said if Shepherd ever repeated his comments to his face, there would be “a situation.”

Shivers said he has never made player decisions based on skin colour.

Clermont was drafted by the B.C. Lions in the first round in 2002, before the Roughriders had an opportunity to choose him, said Shivers.

“What is [Shepherd] basing it on?” said Shivers.

“We didn’t have a chance to draft Jason Clermont. You can blame that on the previous regime. They had a chance to sign Jason Clermont. We tried to make a trade [for] Jason Clermont.”

The Lions meet the Montreal Alouettes in the Grey Cup on Sunday in Winnipeg.

C.a.r.d Source: CBC.ca

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