It is time for the dialogue to begin The Azeem Rafiq case has raised so many significant issues around race and racism within sport. He experienced some horrific treatment and suffered in silence until he found the courage to fight back. The legacy of his courage will leave a positive and lasting impact across all of sport and beyond. Then it came to light that Azeem had made some antisemitic remarks in his youth. Remarks which are undoubtedly like much of the racist behaviour he himself highlighted within cricket. We now have a bizarre situation where people are attempting to use Azeem's discriminatory behaviour against Jewish people to discredit his lived experience of discrimination. The assumption seems to be that one cannot be both a perpetrator and a victim of discrimination, without somehow being a hypocrite. This is a frankly absurd notion. We know for example, that racism and discrimination exist frequently within black and Asian communities. No one group of people is above bias and lives life by the highest set of moral standards, everyone has blind spots. With every incorrect assumption like this, we are missing so many opportunities for dialogue. The question we should be asking Azeem Rafiq, is why he made those comments and what led him to have those opinions? That's the same question we should be asking other people within sport who have made discriminatory remarks in the past. Of course, these people must also admit to wrongdoing, before honest dialogue can truly begin. I grew up in a mixed household with a white mother and a Barbadian father. My father was an antiracism activist and overtly homophobic and he brought me up with homophobic stereotypes. It took me some time and education to realise that prejudice was ridiculous, in addition to my first gay work colleague who became a great friend and mentor in my youth. My father and other members of the West Indian community frequently used racist terms towards people from Asian backgrounds. Again, I overcame these biases with education and interaction. Perhaps fortunately I grew up in a time when social media was not available so no one can look back at comments I made forty years ago to offer moral judgement. What I believe now wholeheartedly is that every human being is of equal value, and I will fight to uphold that value for the rest of my life. To get to this point took me twenty years of education and often painful personal self-reflection. I am from a mixed white and Caribbean background and my partner is from a Pakistani Muslim background. In our time together we have experienced overt racism from some members of the Asian communities including insults I didn't even know existed. I resigned from my previous job because of those issues. And yes, I can categorically state that bias, racism, homophobia and misogyny are present in all communities black, white and Asian. They are present in many human beings in one form or another. The way we move forward as a society is not by executing people who step over the moral boundary invented by the righteous, it is by understanding why and how they reached that point. Only then can we really deconstruct the limiting beliefs and fear that led to those behaviours. This is a key point in history for the fight against discrimination and it is an opportunity for an honest national dialogue. This is not a time for more meaningless executions. If you are completely free from any form of bias, have never said anything remotely offensive about another human being, then you can judge. For the rest of us now is the time to talk and to understand our prejudices in a safe and open dialogue. Most of us can do that without the glare of publicity, unfortunately that is not an option for those found guilty and executed in the court of public opinion.