Why Won’t Britain’s Soccer League Release Its Anti-Homophobia Ad?

In the United Kingdom, gay activists (and probably some closeted professional athletes) were all excited about 90-second film the Football Association was going to release to denounce homophobia in the sport. But last week it was canceled! Which meant folks like Peter Tatchell and John Amaechi were voicing their outrage! So is FA merely delaying its inevitable participating in fighting homophobia in sports? Or is it abandoning its once-heralded leadership?

Officially, FA says it needs more time to devise its anti-homophobia “strategy,” whatever that means.

The film is understood to be graphic in its depiction of homophobic abuse. The FA said that it was delaying the release of the film to give itself extra time to draw up a more-detailed strategy for its anti-homophobia campaign. A spokesman said the game’s governing body was still “committed to its stated aims of tackling homophobia in football.” He added: “After consultation with our Tackling Homophobia Working Group we have now produced a viral film which will form part of our overall strategy. We will now enter a final stage of consultation and will shortly be in a position to announce the next stage of the strategy, including the launch of the educational film.”

Not good enough, says Tatchell!

It has thrown the Football Association’s commitment to tackling homophobia into disarray. The video agreed by the FA and Kick It Out [anti-racism campaigners] features strong homophobic language. The main character, a youngish man, abuses a newspaper seller, tube train passenger and an office worker with anti-gay taunts. The video finishes with him shouting homophobic abuse at a football match. The captions make the point that since homophobia is not acceptable at work, it should not be acceptable on the terraces either. I wanted an MTV-style video, with an appealing, uplifting, positive message, featuring top players and a good music track. Sadly, the FA never seriously attempted to get top players to participate.

What does he think this is, a Jersey Shore promo?


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  • malcanoid

    From what fleeting contact I have had with FA, I cannot take them seriously. I don’t sense any real commitment. In my opinion they are entering this campaign half heartedly simply because it is politically correct and they are expected to be doing something.

    Take a look at this on the BBC Newsnight programme:-

    John Amaechi is absolutely right. What are they doing inside the game, amongst board members, amongst managers, amongst players? I believe they see the punters as the only problem. Do those making the money in the game see a need to change? Not on your nellie!

  • Werewolfmoon

    I love this advert; it reminds me of being in high school again. I love this advert; it reminds me of being in high school again. My nickname was (mainly) ‘bender’ although i got called nearly all of them – Queer, Poof, faggot… a day never went by without the ever funny “Bums to the wall lads here comes the gay-boi” line, or “Watch your backs there’s the Homo!” I was pretty lonely in high school, lonely abused and spat at… but hay-ho it’s not all about me, there’s a lot of kids out there still suffering the shit i/we suffered. That’s why I think this ad is good, because it shows how absurd and hateful homophobia really is; it lets people see what the abuse would be like if the tables were turned and it was the straight community at the receiving end of the intimidation.
    A good ad but i think as a stand alone campaign it falls short. This would be better as part of a series of adverts; I am all in favour of the idea to get the famous footballers interviewed to explain to their fellow Hets why Homosexual people are worth respecting.

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