Showing posts with label Homophobia/Sports. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Homophobia/Sports. Show all posts

December 12, 2018

Kyler Murray Heisman Trophy Winner Apologizes For His Anti Gay Tweets When He was A Young Teen



                                                Image result for Kyler Murray


NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Newly minted Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray is apologizing for anti-gay tweets posted to his Twitter account several years ago, when he was 14 and 15.
The Oklahoma quarterback tweeted: "I apologize for the tweets that have come to light tonight from when I was 14 and 15. I used a poor choice of word that doesn't reflect who I am or what I believe. I did not intend to single out any individual or group."
The tweets have since been deleted from the account of Murray, 21, who won college football's most prestigious individual award Saturday night over Alabama's Tua Tagovailoa and Ohio State's Dwayne Haskins.
Murray, a junior from the Dallas suburbs, has signed a $4.66 million contract with the Oakland Athletics after he was selected in the first round of the Major League Baseball draft in June and this season may be his last in college football.
The controversy solicited comments from social media users, some who defended Murray and others who thanked him for apologizing. 
Past social media comments have come to haunt other high-profile people and celebrities in recent days.
Comedian Kevin Hart pulled out as host of the next Academy Awardsafter he came under fire last week for old homophobic tweets and jokes that were resurfaced on social media.
In a video on Instagram, Hart didn't apologize but said he had changed his views.
"Guys, I'm almost 40 years old. If you don't believe that people change, grow, evolve as people get older, I don't know what to tell you," Hart, 39, said in the video. "If you want to hold people in a position where they always have to justify or explain their past, than do you. I'm the wrong guy."

October 22, 2018

Homophobe(Afraid of being gay)Brandon Lloyd Complaints Men's Locker is Too Gay for Him

Sometimes talk about any type of sex can be disruptive at work. On the other hand if your job is very stressful particularly if its stressful with both your mind and bodyalike, a football player for instance, guys will find ways to unwind as they get out of the unifom and become civilians again. I enjoyed these comments from this former receiver from the N.E. Patriots because he is always had complaints about gays and the field. Now is the talk but the talk is particularly interesting becaue the way he said it as a straight man he describbed precisely how a gay person in that locker room is going to feel. Be a player or a towel boy or someone not into sex at all (as we learned sex is not enjoyed by everyone).

When I was young I used to fake it; When I became older I would not engage in the conversation and it made people think wether I was gay or not but since I never look like the guy that can be bullied things will not go anywhere; When I was really comfortable about my self I would have a manager like me or even above me talk about what he did on his date with the girl, wife etc., then I would tell him what I did on my date, even if I had to make it up🤣. Only fair I would say if I heard a complaint. 
🦊Adam

 
Brandon Lloyd was a receiver with the New England Patriots for the 2012 season.
 Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images
There’s been a lot of chatter this week about a new article series in the Boston Globe, and accompanying podcast at Wondery, about the life of former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez. We’ve been reviewing the entire series and considering it before commenting on it here on Outsports, but there is one interview in the first episode of the podcast series that jumped out at me.
Brandon Lloyd, a receiver with the Patriots in 2012, said in the podcast series that his locker that season was between those of Hernandez and tight end Rob Gronkowski. Lloyd said in the podcast fellow receiver Wes Welker “warned” him about Hernandez when Lloyd got to the team.
“‘He’s going to have his genitalia out in front of you while you’re sitting on your stool,’” Lloyd said Welker warned him. “‘He’s going to have his towel and try to dry off in front of you while you’re sitting at your locker. He’s going to talk about gay sex. Just do your best to ignore it, even walk away.’”
To be sure, “gayness” was a part of the Patriots locker room, according to Lloyd. 
“We played gay all the time. We played grab-ass, flippin’ towels, all the cheesy stuff that happens in sports movies where they lampoon an NFL or sports locker room. It happens.”
Given Lloyd played for six different NFL teams over the course of 11 seasons, I imagine it’s safe to say Foxborough wasn’t the only place he saw this. 
Yet Lloyd said Hernandez’s behavior took the playful homoeroticism to a place that made some guys feel uncomfortable.
“But the things he was talking about was more-so, it was more graphic than us slapping each other on the ass and laughing and giggling like normally happens in a male locker room.”
Lloyd’s comments are enlightening for a couple of reasons. We will never know if Hernandez was gay, bi, queer or any other letter of our community. The man’s dead and only he can tell us. Yet it’s clear the guys in the Patriots locker room felt he wasn’t just another straight guy. And with him in the locker room they continued to play “grab ass,” slap each other’s bare asses and act, as Lloyd called it, “gay.” 
Gronkowski himself has said he’d be cool with a gay teammate. Other current and former Patriots have shared the same attitude about a gay athlete in the locker room.
As we’ve said for years, having a gay, bi or queer teammate in the locker room just is not a big deal to most guys today, or even, in this case, at least six years ago.
Yet the other piece of the puzzle — Welker’s warning, Lloyd’s seeming unease with Hernandez’s “gay talk” — also points to a dynamic that it’s all fun and games between the guys as long as it doesn’t go TOO far. Talk about actual gay sex might make all the “grab ass” just a little too gay for some guys. 
I can pretty much understand where they’re coming from. Talk about sex between men and women certainly makes just about anything way too straight for me.

July 4, 2018

Colin Martin Was Benched Right After Coming Out Gay












[This a posting from Outsports By 

Last Friday, Minnesota United player Collin Martin came out publicly hours before the club hosted its Pride Night to celebrate the LGBTQ community. Anticipation was that Martin would play in the match, but then ... nothing. He stayed on the sideline, prompting public disappointment from some.
Why did he not play? He is the only publicly out LGBTQ athlete playing in major men’s pro sports in North America, it was the team’s Pride Night, and he had been playing regularly for the last couple of months.
It’s an important question to ask, and Martin’s own post-match comments have given rise to both speculation and a possible answer.
Before we dig too deep into this, we want to be perfectly clear about one thing: We do not believe there was any outward homophobia from anyone with the club against Martin because he’s gay. 
Martin has been out to the team for a year, he has expressed complete support from everyone around him, the team has expressed support, the league has expressed support both publicly and privately, and various teammates and coaches have very organically and naturally made it clear they love Martin and entirely support him.
Any insinuation that Martin has been rejected by the team, or that he is being punished for being gay, is completely false and based on no facts. Zero.
Martin was not discriminated against because he’s gay. 
With that being said, Martin himself raised an interesting question in his post-match interviews that raised our eyebrows here at Outsports. When asked if he had an extra desire to play on Pride Night given his public announcement, he said he did. Then he gave a possible explanation for his lack of playing time.
“I want to play every game, so that is normal,” he said. “Maybe he thought I had a lot going on today.” The “he” in question is club manager Adrian Heath, who has the final voice on line-ups and substitutions. 
Various requests by Outsports to speak with Martin have been ignored by the club.
When asked about Martin’s decision to come out publicly, Heath was pitch-perfect.
“It’s something this club has always talked about, being inclusive to everybody,” Heath said, “so he’ll make no difference to us.”
We believe Heath with no reservation. 
Yet Martin’s comment — about the perception he was too distracted on Friday to play effectively — lingers. If an LGBTQ athlete wants to come out, be it privately or publicly, should the timing of their choice have an impact on their playing status?
While we discredit almost every nonsensical “distraction” issue, this one question — coming out literally hours before a match and suddenly juggling lots of interest — as an important one.
Eli Hoff, managing editor of Outsports’ Minnesota United sister site E Pluribus Loonum, reflected the public anticipation of Martin playing in his column recapping his post-match interview and media scrum with Martin. 
“Though many fans expected Martin to appear in the match, either as a substitute or a starter, neither came to be,” Hoff wrote.
Minneapolis Star-Tribune sports writer Megan Ryan, who covers the Minnesota United, told Outsports that, prior to his coming out, Martin’s starting and playing status likely “could have gone either way.”
Ryan said that Martin has regularly started in a 4-3-3 formation lineup for the United. Against Dallas, the club opted for a 3-5-2 lineup. She said it might have been a surprise that Collen Warner started over Martin, but that it wasn’t an egregious shock. 
Until Friday, Warner had played in half as many matches as Martin — three vs. six. He hadn’t started since March, while Martin had started five of the club’s previous eight matches.
While it may not have been a shocker, it raises some eyebrows.
Yet, frankly, it’s also understandable. People talk about the “distraction” of a gay athlete, and it’s something we at Outsports completely dismiss. Gay athletes are not a distraction, as many have come out and been part of teams that went on to do great things. Any extra cameras or media attention is hardly a distraction to a team trying to get to a league championship. 
However. There are reasons we recommend to LGBTQ professional athletes that they come out publicly during the offseason. An MLS player coming out publicly in January has a couple months to get through the cameras and attention before ever having to step foot on a pitch for a meaningful game.
Martin came out publicly at 10 a.m. last Friday with a match at 7 p.m on the same day.
Brave. Courageous. Trailblazing. Inspiring. Amazing. 
Yet it was also risky in a way we have not seen before, not because of the possible long-term reactions from people on his team, but because of the actual, real risk of a pertinent distraction in his life hours before his match. 
Even Martin himself said his coming out on the game day created complications that may have better served him another time. 
“If I was going to do it differently next,” Martin said, “I would not have done it on a game day. It has been crazy in terms of logistics.”
According to Ryan, Martin was so busy giving media interviews on Friday that he was unable to take his usual game-day nap. Breaking from game-day norm for a professional athlete is not a deal-breaker but it is significant. 
In addition, at halftime, Martin left the team locker room to give the club’s community award to Dot Beltsler, the executive director of Twin Cities Pride. Ryan said it’s out of the ordinary for a player to be involved in the halftime award ceremony.
Again, not a deal-breaker... but significant.
Ryan said that much of Martin’s game-day prep was turned upside down on Friday.
While Hoff believed that Martin should have played Friday, he echoed much of what Ryan said. 
“Friday was very abnormal for him,” Hoff told Outsports. “Players are usually not available on the game day before the game. He was doing an interview with NBC, and I know he was doing one with the local NBC affiliate too. Plus those were at the stadium, which was also abnormal.”
Hoff said exacerbating that is that Martin wasn’t, until Friday, in high demand from the media. Suddenly seemingly everyone wanted to talk to him. Plus, he’d been setting the stage for his big coming out with his family and club all week.
There were, beyond his coming-out announcement, extenuating circumstances. 
Another key issue of note is the nature of substitutions in soccer. MLS clubs, like most professional soccer clubs around the world, are allowed only three subs in a match. This isn’t like basketball where a coach can send a player into the game, see how he’s playing, and get him back on the bench if it isn’t going well. If Martin had gone in, with only three substitutions allowed in MLS, he’d be there for the duration.
Over the weekend, Heath answered a question about his decision to sit Martin. He gave the perfect answer to why he substituted Frantz Pangop instead of Martin in the 77th minute. 
“I just wanted a more offensive player on the field,” Heath said, according to Ryan. “I felt that we needed to score a goal, and I think Frantz is more dangerous in the final third than Collin. That’s just the nature of their positions and the way that they play.”
In six seasons with D.C. United and Minnesota United, Martin has zero goals and three assists in MLS matches. MLS’ own Web site describes Pangop: “quick, dynamic and has the skill to create and score goals”
It was very disappointing that MLS’ only publicly out gay athlete did not play on his club’s own Pride Night. No athlete should lose playing time because of the timing of their coming out. That he was not recognized formally in any way during said Pride Night speaks poorly of the club’s execution of the event.
However, Martin’s topsy-turvy Friday, and the nature of soccer are certainly extenuating circumstances. In this particular case, given all of the circumstances, if the club managers and coaches took all this into consideration, it’s actually — in this individual case — understandable.
For more Minnesota United news and notes, visit E Pluribus Loonum.

July 6, 2017

In Brazil You Can't be an Athlete and Masturbate in the Lockers


If you want to laugh you may, I do because of the Hypocrisy of Brazil's Club President Gilmar Rosso who might just go for the real thing not just mimic and not gay. One most wonder what he is got up his kazoo. Politics I guess since it was on video.    Adam


The two guys being masturbated, the one doing it and the cam person all were fired.




Three players from Sport Clube Gaúcho have had their contracts terminated after a video showing the men engaging in sexual acts in the team’s locker room went viral over the weekend. The three dismissed players–whose names have not been released to the public–were filmed by a fourth, unidentified player engaging in group masturbation while inside the dressing room areas. The video, which was reportedly recorded on Friday, quickly made the rounds, opening up the third division club to derision and criticism from media and fans alike.

Club president Gilmar Rosso spoke to Brazilian outlet Globo Esporte following the dismissals, reiterating that the players were released due to the acts having occurred on club property: “Outside business hours, we have nothing to do with the situation. If they want to get drunk, gay or not, that’s their problem,” said Rosso. “What I have to answer as president is during a trip, office hours. That’s my responsibility. The club is not a keeper of morals and good manners. The only thing we have to answer to is them making the video inside the locker room.”

Rosso did also say that he tried to watch the video, but “found it disgusting” and stopped shortly after.

The online response to the news has been, to say the least, disappointing; jokes about the Gaúcho region stereotype–that all its men are gay–outnumbered any reasoned discussion about the video or the dismissals, including the impact of it having been specifically gay sex portrayed in the video and that leading to the termination of the players’ contracts.

In fact, in an interview with UOL Sport, Rosso that the dismissal wasn’t just a reprisal for filming on club property, but also to help the players avoid fan jeers and insults: “Imagine when they enter the field, what they would have heard,” he said. “As far as I know, these three are not gay, but now they would have to prove that they are not gay” to the fans. In a sport where not many players are openly gay–Robbie Rogers’ coming out in 2013 was a huge sports story exactly due to its rarity–it’s likely that these three players would have faced hardships unlike any they or the club had seen before.

Of course, that could also be a cop-out from Rosso, and, given the context of his other comments, it seems more likely that this is PR spin to allow the club both to distance itself while feigning support for the players.

While the club is within its rights to dismiss the three futboleros here (after all, the video was filmed in the locker room, a big no-no), it does beg the question as to whether the punishment would have been the same if the video featured heterosexual acts, and whether it would even have made the news beyond a blurb in local news.



March 1, 2017

NYxKnicks Amar’e Stoudemire says He Will Rather Shower in The Street Than with a Gay Teammate




 

Former Phoenix Suns and New York Knicks All-Star Amar'e Stoudemire says he would take measures to avoid a teammate if he found out that player is gay.

"I'm going to shower across the street, make sure my change of clothes are around the corner," Stoudemire said in an interview with Israeli website Walla Sport. "And I'm going to drive -- take a different route to the gym."

Asked if he was joking, Stoudemire responded, "I mean, there's always a truth within a joke."

Stoudemire is playing for Hapoel Jerusalem in the Israeli Premier League. Some teammates interviewed for the piece said they "wouldn't have an issue" with a gay teammate.

While he was playing for the Knicks, Stoudemire was fined $50,000 after he tweeted a gay slur at another user during the 2012 offseason.

At the time of the fine, Stoudemire issued an apology through a statement.

"I am a huge supporter of civil rights for all people," he said. "I am disappointed in myself for my statement to a fan. I should have known better and there is no excuse."

[Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.]

Fifteen years ago, when Suns rookie Amar’e Stoudemire moved into his first Phoenix home, a neighbor welcomed him with a plate of cookies. Unsure of how to respond, the 19-year-old improvised and delivered a pair of signed basketball shoes.

If only Stoudemire continued to react with such tact.

The former NBA player’s comments Tuesday that he would “shower across the street” if he learned a teammate was gay was further proof that we’re a society still struggling to adapt to the more-transparent face of pro sports, one that includes gay athletes, officials and administrators.

It’s time to trade the vitriol for compassion, ignorance for education, hysteria for patience.

Few feel comfortable discussing the reality: Gay athletes exist in professional locker rooms. If 3.8 percent of the population is gay, as a recent study by UCLA’s Williams Institute suggests, then approximately 64 NFL players, 29 baseball players, 26 NHL players and 17 NBA players are, too. Even if the numbers are lower, it still says something that no active athlete in the four major men's sports has come out.

Dialogue is needed. League leadership should set the example. 

At least the NBA has. During last year’s LGBT Pride Parade in New York City, the NBA and WNBA became the first professional sports leagues to march in the event, with NBA commissioner Adam Silver wearing an #OrlandoUnited T-shirt in remembrance of the Orlando mass shooting at a gay nightclub that killed 49.

The San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers have held special LGBT events, but they are more the exception than the rule.

Locally, the Mercury annually celebrate with a Pride event and the Coyotes have held an LGBT night. In fact, the Coyotes’ Reebok Gray Rainbow Pride T-shirt is a top-seller among T-shirts on NHL.com.

But many other pro teams are hesitant to do anything. One reason is personal beliefs by executives. Some have told me such events are hard to reconcile with their Christianity.

An article in the Christian Post last year called for NFL players to “threaten a boycott if the NFL continues to be an aggressive tool of gay activism and an aggressive opponent of religious liberty.”

That’s the ideal example of an argument that demands discussion – civil discord, not finger-pointing and pejoratives. Both sides would benefit from thoughtful debate, but as the presidential election has taught us, passion leaves little room for healthy conversation.

We don’t have to agree.

We just have to talk about it.

And compassion should extend in all directions. 

Stoudemire, who is playing for Hapoel Jerusalem in the Israeli Premier League, made his comments after an Israeli Web site reporter asked him what he would do if he learned a teammate was gay.

When asked if his comments were a joke, he said, “I mean, there’s always a truth within a joke.”

He later issued an apology saying he was a “huge supporter of civil rights for all people.”

His quick apology was important. People say dumb things all the time. It shouldn’t shape him. It’s how he moves forward that matters.
 
Former WNBA player Candice Wiggins found herself in the headlines recently when she told the San Diego Union-Tribune she was bullied by other league players.

“Me being heterosexual and straight, and being vocal in my identity as a straight woman was huge,” she said. “I would say 98 percent of the women in the WNBA are gay women. It was a conformist type of place. There was a whole different set of rules they (the other players) could apply.

“There was a lot of jealousy and competition, and we’re all fighting for crumbs. The way I looked, the way I played – those things contributed to the tension.”
 
The good news is this is a conversation we weren’t having a decade ago. And while many are concerned Wiggins’ comments are playing into stereotypes, we shouldn’t be so quick to attack her either. She felt something, perceived or otherwise, and it should be examined.

Former Mercury player Monique Currie, now with the San Antonio Stars, put it best in her personal blog when she said that if Wiggins “was bullied because she was ‘proud to be a woman,’ then these feelings are real and we cannot discount what she felt,” but also that “Wiggins needs to check her privilege at the door, and not group her very unfortunate personal experiences on an entire group of women.”

She added that “in my 11 seasons in the WNBA I've never witnessed the kind of bullying Wiggins describes in her interview. This does not mean it did not happen, but I'm proud to be a part of a league that supports inclusion and celebrates all players regardless of their race, religion or sexuality. We are a family made up of players that love and respect the game of basketball.”

Isn’t that ultimately what matters, that all of us – fans, players, owners – love and respect the sports we watch/play/rule?

Let’s continue to talk about them, With civility.

Reach Paola Boivin at paola.boivin@arizonarepublic.com and on Twitter at Twitter.com/PaolaBoivin.  

October 18, 2016

Out Premier League Players Face ‘Significant abuse’


Ex-Aston Villa midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger revealed he is gay after finishing playing in England


Thomas Hitzlsperger














 Premier League players would still suffer "significant abuse" if they chose to reveal they are gay, Football Association chairman Greg Clarke has warned.
Clarke was answering Commons Select Committee questions at the government's governance of football inquiry.
"I'm cautious of encouraging people to come out until we do our part of the bargain and stamp out abuse," he said.
"I am personally ashamed they don't feel safe to come out."
Justin Fashanu became the first player in England to come out as gay in 1990, but took his own life aged 37 in 1998. No male professional player has come out while playing in England since.
Former Germany and Aston Villa player Thomas Hitzlsperger became the first player with Premier League experience to publicly reveal his homosexuality, in January 2014, after he had finished playing in England.
Former England women's captain Casey Stoney was the first active footballer to come out in England since Fashanu, in February 2014.
"I would be amazed if we haven't got gay players in the Premier League," Clarke added.
Clarke was questioned about a Daily Mirror article from 2015 that claimed two Premier League players, including an England international, had been preparing to come out.
The Mirror also alleged a Premier League player came out to his team-mates in 2011, but did not go public after a homophobic slur was painted on his car.
Clarke, 49, denied knowing the identity of the players - and told the committee members he would not name them even if he did.
Clarke also cited the weekend's League Two fixture between Leyton Orient and Luton Town, at which homophobic chanting was reported, saying he would "come down like a tonne of bricks" on anyone found guilty.
"If I was a gay man, why would I expose myself to that?" Clarke asked.

"Before we encourage people to come out we must provide the safe space where they have the expectation to play or watch football and not get abused.
"There's a very small minority of people who hurl vile abuse at people who they perceive are different. Our job is to stamp down hard on their behaviour."
Asked what would happen if a Premier League player came out, Clarke said: "There would be significant abuse because we haven't cracked the problem. 
"I was at Egham Town v St Albans in the FA Cup. There were about 300 people and everybody knew everybody else, there was no vile abuse.
"When you're in a big crowd, you're anonymous and the bad people get brave.
"The good news is we're not in denial. We may not have figured out how to crack it yet but there's a deep loathing of that sort of behaviour within football."
Clarke said he would next week attend his first FA inclusion advisory board, which provides guidance on all equality matters.

BBC

August 4, 2016

Chicago Fire Soccer Club Stops Anti Gay Chants on Its Tracks




The following article was published by Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass who weighs in on Chicago Fire General Manager Nelson Rodriquez’s decision to take to the pitch before Sunday’s game to tell fans they can no longer use a derogatory chant popular in Mexico. (Nancy Stone / Chicago Tribune)

Fans chant for their team

 
My favorite team, the Chicago Fire, isn't the best soccer club in the world. They're in last place in their league, although they have a chance to get into the finals of the U.S. Open Cup.

Last year I was so depressed, I advocated hiring the Grim Reaper as a mascot. This year, despite the pain, I'm weirdly optimistic about the future.

But I'm not writing today about soccer on the field.

I’m writing about the stellar character of the Chicago Fire Soccer Club and its decision to take a stand against an infamous anti-gay chant common among soccer-crazy Mexican fans. 
When a business — and the Fire is a business — stands up for honor and principle and against behavior common to a core fan group that buys tickets — that's a story.

The other night at Toyota Park, I was sitting with my sons — both in college and current soccer players — when Chicago Fire general manager Nelson Rodriguez walked out onto the field alone.

It was "Pride" night. The Chicago Gay Men's Chorus had finished a fine rendition of the national anthem before Sunday's game with the New York Red Bulls.

That's when Rodriguez walked into the center circle and did something the rest of the soccer world doesn't seem able to do.

Soccer fans need to stop with the offensive chants
Soccer fans need to stop with the offensive chants
He looked up into the stands and announced that any fan found to be using the infamous anti-gay Mexican soccer chant would be booted out of the stadium.

"An inappropriate and offensive chant has been used by some of our fans," Rodriguez said. "It is unbecoming and certainly not reflective of the great city that we live in, and the best fans in major league soccer.

"Please be advised that if the chant continues and you are found to be participating, you are subject to removal. If you are near fans using offensive language, please advise stadium security so we can handle that as well."

And all I could say was "bravo."

There were a few boos. But most of us applauded him. And I didn't hear that chant once during the game.

If you know soccer, you know the chant I'm talking about, a chant of one word:

Puto.

It means effeminate man whore. It is ugly and demeaning, directed at gay men in a macho culture, but at soccer games it is directed at the goalie of the opposing team.

 
Some apologists insist that it's not an anti-gay chant, per se, and that it's ingrained in Mexican soccer culture.

But a 2015 story about the "puto" chant in SB Nation written by Jim Buzinski explained it best. He interviewed Andres Aradillas-Lopez, a Penn State economics professor who was born and raised in Mexico and is an ardent fan of the Mexican national team.

Aradillas-Lopez is not gay, but he loathes the term and rebuts the apologists this way.

"What they omit to say is that 'puto' has always been a derogatory term used against gay men and, therefore, is a gay slur. In the macho universe, gay men are a subset of the universe of 'putos' (I would like them to tell me why, then, do they not chant 'puta' at women's soccer games)."

If you've watched any soccer involving the Mexican national team, you've heard it coming through on broadcasts. Sometimes 100,000 Mexican fans will scream it, and in games against the U.S. team, they shout it in once voice, at the American goalie, when he punts the ball forward on a goal kick.

It was shouted at other teams as well in the Copa America tournament here this summer. Mexico has a great team. I picked them to win that tournament. They lost, but the nation of Mexico loses face every time the fans shout the term.

The international governing body of soccer, FIFA, has been unable to stop it. But maybe that's because Mexican fans buy tickets, and the sport doesn't want to lose money.

One way to stop it is to penalize the Mexican national team, strip it of points or order the team to play in empty stadiums, without their fans. But that would cost money.

I hate hearing it. I didn't want my wife and kids to hear it when the kids were young soccer players.

I'm not your thought police. If you wish to use such language at home, be my guest. But an organized chant in a public place where I'm paying for a ticket? No thank you.

The Fire have put out public service announcements asking fans to respect each other. But they had had enough. So Nelson Rodriguez took that walk and said his piece.

"This chant is offensive," he told me in an interview at Toyota Park. "It's vulgar, it's inappropriate and it runs contrary I think — even in my short time here — to the spirit of Chicago, which at every turn I just find is warm and welcoming and friendly, and I'm of Latino descent."

The chant, he said, "is not clever or creative, or catchy or appropriate in any way. Yeah, I'm not deaf. I heard a smattering of boos. But that's a very small minority of fans, and I don't care if they don't return. In fact, personally, if they are booing the message as opposed to booing the messenger, go find another team to support."

Rodriguez says there is no victory without honor. He's right.

The Chicago Fire won't always be in last place. And today, they’re champions.




Twitter @John_Kass

May 23, 2016

The Padres Humiliate The Gay Men Chorus on the Field



                                                                                                                                                

It should have been a fun night at the ballpark Saturday in San Diego for anyone not rooting for the Los Angeles Dodgers, but it became an evening filled with confusion and hurt feelings for some before the game even started.

The San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus was invited to sing the National Anthem at the “Out at the Park” event at Petco Park and 100 volunteer members were on hand to participate. But when the moment arrived, the chorus was forced to stand on the field and listen to a recording of a woman singing the anthem instead, and the Padres never took any action to correct what the organization said was a mistake, such as allowing the chorus to perform after the recorded anthem ended.  
Making matters worse, members of the chorus reported being booed and heckled as they were ushered off the field following the recorded anthem, including at least one taunt of "You sing like a girl."

The gay men’s chorus has performed at Padres games multiple times in the past, including just last season (see the video below). So there was no reason to suspect there would be anything unusual about Saturday’s performance.

The Padres explained what happened as a control room mistake and apologized in a brief statement. Padres president Mike Dee contacted the chorus to apologize and offered to meet with the group.

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On Sunday morning, dissatisfied with the explanation from the Padres and Dee’s attempt to smooth things over, SDGMC executive director Bob Lehman issued a statement calling for the Padres and Major League Baseball to investigate the incident. Lehman also asked the City of San Diego to investigate to determine whether hate crimes had been committed. The full statement from Lehman is below.
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SAN DIEGO, May 22, 2016—What should have been a night of joy and celebration at Petco Park last night, instead turned into a nightmare raising serious questions about homophobia within the San Diego Padres organization and its relationship with the LGBT community.
Before the start of the last night’s San Diego Padres game, 100 volunteer singers of the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus took to the field to proudly sing the National Anthem. Instead, in front of the large crowd gathered for the LA Dodgers game, the San Diego Padres played the recorded voice of a woman singing the anthem.
No attempt was made to stop the recording and start over. No announcement of apology was made to the singers or their friends and families in the stands. No attempt to correct the situation occurred other than to force the 100 men to stand in the spotlight of center field for the song’s duration and then be escorted off the field to the heckles of baseball fans shouting homophobic taunts including “You sing like a girl.”
This incident followed several days of troubling comments and behavior within the San Diego Padres organization. Three days before the game, San Diego Padres representatives aggressively sought to prevent singers from performing the National Anthem unless they purchased a ticket to the game—even if they did not plan to stay for the game—which was not part of any previous discussion or written or verbal agreement and would have cost the small, community-based non-profit thousands of dollars. The demand eventually was rescinded on Friday following repeated complaints made by SDGMC and San Diego Pride to San Diego Padres management.
With this as background, we call on the San Diego Padres and Major League Baseball to immediately launch a full and transparent investigation into the incident to determine if someone or some people intentionally engaged in anti-gay discrimination or a hate crime by playing a female’s voice to represent a group of gay men with the purpose of denigrating and/or ridiculing gay men. The historic significance of such an act is not lost on the LGBT community—especially in relation to professional sports—and added to the depth of embarrassment experienced by the singers and their families.
We also call upon the City of San Diego City Attorney’s Office and the City of San Diego Human Relations Commission to independently investigate this incident to determine if members of the San Diego Padres organization engaged in activity in violation of the San Diego Human Rights Ordinance or engaged in any deliberate hate crimes based on sexual orientation.
We applaud San Diego Padres President and Chief Executive Office Mike Dee for reaching out to our organization to apologize and to offer to meet with LGBT leaders to discuss the incident. We look forward to this meeting. We believe it is important to work together with the San Diego Padres organization to build bridges within the LGBT community rather than burn them down as happened last night.
However, we are very disappointed with the San Diego Padres dismissively brief two sentence statement at 9:37 p.m. on Saturday, May 21, 2016 which did not appropriately address the gravity of the situation nor pay due to the 100 volunteers who took to the field in celebration and were led off in humiliation.
The game was probably an afterthought for those involved in the pregame ugliness. The Padres won 3-2 in the 11th inning when Yangervis Solarte drew a bases-loaded walk to end the game.
 

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