So France won the World Cup on Sunday...
And during a segment of The Daily Show broadcast after France's victory, Trevor Noah made a joke about how it appeared that Africa had actually won the tournament.
While some saw this as a lighthearted joke, there were many who considered the comment to be racist.
The French ambassador to the United States, Gérard Araud, then wrote a letter to Noah, stating that by referring to the French team as an African team, "You are denying their Frenchness."
Here is the main section of the letter if the letter is too small to read on your screen:
I heard your words about "an African victory", nothing could be less true.
As many players have already stated themselves, their parents may have come from another country but a great majority of them (all but two out of 23) were born in France; they were educated in France; they learned to play soccer in France; they are French citizens. They are proud of their country, France. The rich and various backgrounds of these players is a reflection of France's diversity.
France is indeed a cosmopolitan country, but every citizen is part of the French identity and together they belong to the nation of France. Unlike the United States of America, France does not refer to its citizens based on their race, religion or origin. To us, there is no hyphenated identity, roots are an individual reality. By calling them an African team, it seems you are denying their Frenchness. This, even in jest, legitimizes the ideology which claims whiteness as the only definition of being French.