THERE are many reasons the education secretary could have confused Rashford and Itoje, and none of them were because they are both black. It was probably one of these:
They both play sport
Gavin Williamson is education secretary, which means the only subject he knows about is school, and he doesn’t even know much about that. He can’t be expected to follow professional football and rugby too, which is why he found this encounter so perplexing.
They’re both men
There are only two types of people in the world: men and women. Rashford and Itoje both have big muscles and no breasts, which puts them in the men category. How was poor Gavin Williamson meant to differentiate even further?
They’re both British
All British people sound the same, don’t they? They have exactly the same accent, and therefore it’s impossible to tell the difference between them. Gavin Williamson can’t figure out which British person is which, even his own family. Sometimes he mistakes his wife for Ronnie Corbett.
They both have heads
To be fair, the conversation Williamson thought he had with Rashford took place on Zoom, where you can only see someone’s head. As Itoje also has a head, it’s pretty easy to see where the confusion arose.
They both do more for children than he does
Rashford regularly faces down the government and Itoje is helping to tackle the school laptop shortage. Williamson, on the other hand, just f**ks up exams and sends children back to school in the midst of a pandemic. It must be baffling for him trying to distinguish between people who are better at his job than him, because there are millions.