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Old 2nd July 2020, 19:29   #31
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Default Re: Mercedes supports anti-racism movement with all-black livery

I completely understand the scepticism in most of the responses in the thread. In most cases, it's more of an issue of once bitten, twice shy - we have seen such statements and schemes so many times that any time we see something like this, by default we assume that it is another sham. I admit that I am guilty of this as much as most of the people on this thread are.

At the same time, I do not agree with those who say that this exercise is entirely futile. The first step to tackling any problem is to acknowledge that the problem exists. And in an industry where this issue is so deeply inset, taking such a bold first step is critical and is what could catalyse further change. That's exactly our problem - we will always keep cribbing about things not changing and then when someone takes a step, we simply say that it is not enough.

A very similar example was when HUL recently decided to drop the word 'Fair' from its brand of whitening creams. If you have followed that debate online, you would have found how people called out HUL for taking such a small step, going on to ask how this would change the years of marketing that have enforced the idea that indeed, being fair is being lovely. I agree to that but then again, the move of acknowledging that the 'Fair' part was something that was wrong and taking a measure to address it, is what matters the most and will go on to catalyse more change. Said change, albeit small, came soon as well, as most other brands decided to follow the lead of HUL and drop the terms whitening and fair from their branding.

Anyway, coming back to the case in point, in the case of Mercedes, I am happy to report that this is not a change that is (quite literally) just skin deep - they intend to follow this up with significant steps to improve the actual representation in the teams as well. I came across a recent blog post on the official Mercedes AMG F1 team's website and I think the following quote would be helpful to this discussion.

Quote:
5) What concrete steps forward will you, as a team, and F1 be making?

We recognise that we have a long way to go when it comes to diversity. We are currently working on a Diversity and Inclusion programme, which we will announce before the end of the season. The programme will focus on analysing our recruitment and development processes, collaborating with our sport’s key stakeholders on new initiatives to improve accessibility, continuing to listen to and raise the awareness of our team members and targeting education initiatives to encourage and support talented people from under-represented backgrounds. We also fully support and stand with F1’s #WeRaceAsOne initiative. F1’s commitment includes setting up a Task Force working to identify employment and education opportunities for under-represented groups across F1, including STEM careers, and required actions to address these findings. F1 will also set up a foundation to help finance internships and apprenticeships in the sport for under-represented groups.
And how does this big step come about? Acknowledging the problem, of course:

Quote:
4) How diverse is your team?

Not diverse enough, is the simple answer. We know that if we can become a more diverse team, and attract talented people from under-represented backgrounds, we will also become a stronger team. Changing the visual appearance of the Silver Arrows underlines and cements our commitment to this change. It’s also a reminder to ourselves that we, individually and as a team, can and must do better.
Source

Again, we can argue that this is too little too late and what not, but I would rather choose to give credit where it is due.

Here is to the baby steps to progress.

Last edited by Batfreak : 2nd July 2020 at 19:31.
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Old 2nd July 2020, 21:27   #32
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Default Re: Mercedes supports anti-racism movement with all-black livery

I'd rather see colour on the board of directors than on the track. But I haven't checked: is there any?
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Old 3rd July 2020, 19:56   #33
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Default Re: Mercedes supports anti-racism movement with all-black livery

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vikki@Hyderabad View Post
I don't like the way this discussion has progressed (or regressed actually). PR or not, this is definitely making a statement. People should just take it for what it appears to be, and leave the motivations for themselves. If it's bringing about some change, let it. There were similar arguments about the MeToo movement as well -- when are we going to stop arguing about outliers and start talking about the elephant in the room? And please let bygones be bygones; if someone wants to right a wrong in whatever way, they should be appreciated.
Finally a post that makes sense. Is Mercedes being hypocritical, who knows! What is the actual motivation behind McLaren joining in, who cares!
Will things change as easily, probably not. But this is one movement that deserves as much support as possible, from wherever possible. It's all about optics.

Side note: This new 'dark' livery, with Lewis's new dark themed helmet looks hot. Happy to see the cars out on track, finally.
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