GLAAD's campaign to stop anti-LGBT words in soccer is helping to call attention to slurs on the pitch, especially as FIFA is said to be investigating the recent use of "puto," (faggot) in stadiums in Brazil during the World Cup. This is a problem that many in Mexico have been trying to call attention to for some time, but little has been done to educate fans. GLAAD called on FIFA to do more to fight homophobia in the sport, as anti-gay chants are heard far too often in stadiums around the world, from England to Mexico.
Unfortunately the false binary of "customs/culture" versus "hurtful language" is sometimes used by fans to excuse the homophobic chanting, negating the fact that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender fans are part of the same cultures and are also fans of the games. Some Spanish-language sports commentators have also repeated this excuse. Noticiero Telemundo did a good job of covering the story, doing a piece that included an interview of a gay soccer player from a Mexican group called TriGay. The Mexico CNN piece quotes the Mexican Council to Prevent Discrimination (Conapred) making this same point.
According to the CNN article, ESPN is taking action to ensure that the homophobic chants will not be part of their broadcast. And The Latin Times piece shows that reporters and bloggers alike are writing about the issue in order to keep the conversation going. You can take part by using the #stoptheslurs, sharing the public service announcements GLAAD created, in English and Spanish.
To watch the PSAS:
GLAAD's Spanish-Language team is working closely with reporters and with advocates internationally. Our Director of Spanish-Language Media was interviewed by Noticiero Mundo Fox and we are working with Telemundo's reporter in Brazil. The Advocate has also covered our campaign.