Back in June I posted about a survey tackling the issue of homosexuality in football, and largely reinforcing the general view that it’s rather a taboo subject. Hopefully a few of you clicked through the link and filled in the survey as a result to help the study – certainly there must have been a reasonable response as the survey has reached the next phase.
It’s a pretty short survey to fill in, and focuses on whether or not you think it likely that a gay footballer is likely to come out – or indeed, whether you think they should. Without wishing to influence what you may or may not think, from my point of view I don’t really see it as any different to people in any walk of life – your sexuality is your own business.
From spending a lot of time amongst football fans it’s only too clear that there is a huge groundswell of homophobic attitudes – ranging from what many may consider to be good-natured jocular banter right through to quite scathing abuse. Certainly speculation around sexuality is often seen as ‘fair game’ for football fans to capitalise on – ask Graeme Le Saux, Sol Campbell or Ashley Cole even.
Would I be bothered if a Forest player came out the closet and said “I’m gay”. I’d like to think not, but it would be at the back of mind that it would lead to a continual torrent of – albeit mindless – abuse either on the messageboards and, of course, in the stands from visiting fans (maybe even some home fans too). I’m not sure if that’s enough reason to think a player should remain in the closet.
Personally as a football fan I’m not really interested in many aspects of a player’s lifestyle – so long as they are behaving professionally when in the public eye even on or off the pitch, and – more importantly – performing on it, that really is the sum total of my interest in their lives. I realise some people have a more in depth fascination with footballers – particularly fans of Premier League ‘galacticos’.
But I digress, whatever I think shouldn’t influence yourselves – but I’d urge you to click the link to help the study. Personally I can’t really see the good that a campaign would do – much like the anti-racism campaign, it won’t change anyone’s deep-seated prejudices – I suppose it might deter them from expressing them openly if it might lead to punishment.
Filed under: Thoughts |