Monday, 16 September 2013

Gay Footballers: Behind You!

Professional footballers in England and Scotland have been asked to back a campaign addressing homophobia in the game by wearing rainbow laces in their boots next weekend.
Sets of laces have been sent to all Premier League and Football League clubs, plus the 42 teams in the Scottish Professional Football League, by the gay rights charity Stonewall.
The Right Behind Gay Footballers campaign is focused on changing attitudes in football rather than urging players to come out and wants players to wear the laces in games on 21 and 22 September.
Laura Doughty, deputy chief executive of Stonewall, which is being backed by the bookmaker Paddy Power, said: "It's time for football clubs and players to step up and make a visible stand against homophobia in our national game. By wearing rainbow laces players will send a message of support to gay players and can begin to drag football into the 21st century."
QPR's Joey Barton tweeted his support for the campaign, writing: "Show that people's sexuality shouldn't be an issue. Join the rainbow laces movement."

The Guardian.  

Am I alone in thinking the slogan, "Right Behind Gay Footballers", echoes football fans' laddish, homophobic "banter"?
Here's the Stonewall release - and their 2009 survey into soccerball fans' views about The Gays and homophobia and that.
Stonewall estimate the odds of there not being a gay man among the UK's 5,000 professional footballers is 1 in 22,947,321,563,647,480,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.
Though this may be a ballpark figure.
(It's also based on Stonewall's over-estimation of the gay population, and an assumption that gay men will be as equally represented in football as they are elsewhere - unlikely). 

And here's a previous tweet from our pal Joey...
Top lad.*

PS Remember this campaign's backers Paddy Power's 'Ladies' Day' TV ad, which the ASA ruled was offensive and discriminatory to trans people? Oops!

* Uncle Noam has a new collection of interviews out, On Western Terrorism: From Hiroshima To Drone Warfare. It's ace.


  1. We though that too. Strange that we're the only ones. It's not that subtle, after all.

  2. Barton's also a massive fan of - and chums with - Morrissey, o' course.
    I wonder if they discuss Chomsky together?

    1. I bet Joey doesn't dare bend down to tie his rainbow shoelaces when Morrissey's around.

      AM I RIGHT!!!!