Manchester United’s LGBTQ+ Supporters Club urges fans to stop offensive chants
Manchester United’s LGBTQ+ Supporters Club, Rainbow Devils, has called on fans to stop singing offensive chants during matches. The call comes after homophobic chants were heard during the Premier League match between Chelsea and Manchester United at Stamford Bridge in October 2022. The Crown Prosecution Service has classified the chant as a homophobic slur and said fans singing it during matches were committing a hate crime. Rainbow Devils chair Eric Najib said, « With all the amazing songs that all clubs have, especially Manchester United, there is no need for it. »
Education is key to ending offensive chants
Rainbow Devils vice-chair Lindsay Parr said that education is key to ending offensive chants. She added that « banter doesn’t exclude » and that labeling homophobia, racism, sexism, or any other prejudice as banter is not acceptable. Parr urged fans to look into the history of the chant and why it is offensive, saying that they will realize why it doesn’t have a place in football. The LGBTQ+ Trickies, a group of Nottingham Forest fans, also condemned offensive chants heard during the Premier League match between Nottingham Forest and Chelsea in January 2023.
Homophobic chanting leads to arrests and charges
Offensive chants have led to arrests and charges in recent matches. In April 2023, three arrests were made for alleged homophobic chanting when Wolves beat Chelsea at Molineux. Wolves were charged by the Football Association for failing to control fans at a match disrupted by homophobic chants and are waiting on a sanction. Manchester United and Forest have also condemned offensive chants directed at Frank Lampard during matches. The Rainbow Devils and other LGBTQ+ supporters groups are calling on fans to stop offensive chants and to educate themselves on why they are harmful.
Keywords: Manchester United, LGBTQ+, offensive chants, homophobic, hate crime, education, banter, prejudice, Nottingham Forest, Chelsea, arrests, charges, Football Association.
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