Thursday, 1 September 2011

Advice is well meant – but unneeded.

So German football captain Phillipp Lahm think there's a lot of homophobia in football and would advise gay footballers not to come out.

“I would not advise gay football players...” STOP!. Right that is where the sentence ends, right there.

Because this is a repeated and irritating part of privilege and is a form of concern trolling.

Gay people do not need straight people to tell us how to navigate our worlds. This is like your eccentric uncle Frank advising you on investment banking (though he probably couldn't tell you anything worse than the bankers these days).

By all means lament the homophobia in professional sports. Condemn it, even say that it makes gay sportsman's lives unduly difficult. Say it is wrong and blast it with fury.

But don't advise us how to deal with it, and certainly don't say whether we should be closeted or not. I think, again, we're at the core here of allydom – support, don't lead, bolster don't control, backup not push forward. Support us in what we are doing, don't try to tell us what we should do.