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England Players Ditch "OneLove" Armband, Supporters' Association Criticizes Qatar

Discussion in 'General Debates' started by Debater Slayer, Nov 23, 2022.

  1. Watchmen

    Watchmen Well-Known Member
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    How dare you point out a wrong when you don’t point out other wrongs!

    That’s the OP in a nutshell.
     
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  2. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    I've addressed this in a few posts:

    England Players Ditch "OneLove" Armband, Supporters' Association Criticizes Qatar

    England Players Ditch "OneLove" Armband, Supporters' Association Criticizes Qatar

    England Players Ditch "OneLove" Armband, Supporters' Association Criticizes Qatar

    It's not really about "other wrongs"; more like "wrongs that affect the optics of the message and make the messenger look inconsistent and overly selective."
     
  3. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    Some of the more popular players have tens of millions of fans around the world. There are people watching mainly for the bigger names like Messi and Ronaldo, who are playing their last World Cup before retirement. If one such big name pulled out of the tournament, yes, I believe it would be a huge message—not just in terms of visuals but also possibly financially.

    They would still have platforms back home and on social media to clarify their decision or double down on it. I don't know whether those would be as powerful as being there on the pitch, but combined with the decision not to play, I wouldn't rule it out.

    The main things that critics of the current tournament have cited so far as reasons that Qatar shouldn't have been allowed to host it involve human rights in general, not just LGBT rights. When someone argues that Qatar's treatment of LGBT people disqualifies them from hosting the World Cup, how are they assessing other human rights abuses? For example, is the United States' continued support for Israeli illegal occupation a disqualifying offense too? Or the reversal of Roe v. Wade that allowed abortion bans to go through in many states?

    At some point, the threshold of which issues are "acceptable" in terms of being a World Cup host becomes a value judgment that has no straightforward answer. The US has killed more innocent people in the last 20 years—not even 50 or 60, which would add Vietnam deaths to the tally—than Qatar has in probably its entire lifetime. Same for the UK. So if we zero in on LGBT rights, yes, Qatar is far worse than the US and the UK, but this is where I think some players are prioritizing Qatar for protest: why should we consider one issue (LGBT rights) to be a deal-breaker for a host but not the other (wars or exploitation)? The loss of human life in both cases is inexcusable and equally brutal.
     
  4. Koldo

    Koldo Incredible Member

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    If a bigot considers that to be an act of pushing a message then from experience I would say it is the right thing to do.

    Let me elaborate: Here in Brazil, up to this day, there are still people saying that whenever an homosexual relationship appears on a soap opera (a lot of people watch them), the media is pushing their agenda.

    Do you know what happened the last couple of decades? Homosexual relationships became more and more socially acceptable. It looks like pushing an agenda actually works...

    That presumes the anti-LGBT stance is grounded on arguments that could be refuted. But not's how it works. It has nothing to do with arguments per se. It revolves around calling homosexuality a sin or yucky, and therefore it must be banned, that is it.

    The fact you are comparing wearing that armband and taking a knee with 'criticizing you and your way of life' shows where the problem resides.

    It is not about the bigot's way of life. It is about the people getting sent to jail because of their own way of life.
     
  5. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    I don't know enough about Brazil to give an educated response here, but I will say that generally, multiple factors give rise to such shifts in social attitudes. Do you think the soap operas were the main reason for the increased acceptability of same-sex relationshils in Brazil?

    No, it doesn't presume that; it just presumes that a lot of people will change logically ungrounded beliefs they grew up with or absorbed from society when confronted with sound arguments and evidence. This absolutely doesn't work with everyone, and I agree that many just won't accept anything but what they believe in. But if even a subset of anti-LGBT people change their attitudes as a result of campaigns, then that's still a win for human rights. Large-scale cultural changes often come in increments; you won't find any country that suddenly achieved equality for LGBT people or any other persecuted minority.

    This is your view and mine, which I believe is the only ethical and logical way to view LGBT rights. As I said earlier, however, you can't look only through your perspective if you want to give persuasive messaging. Since any campaign for LGBT rights has to tackle anti-LGBT bigotry at one point or another, knowing how it works and the various cultural factors that contribute to it can be immensely useful.
     
  6. Evangelicalhumanist

    Evangelicalhumanist "Truth" isn't a thing...
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    I have two arguments with the view expressed in this post:

    First, it is naive to suppose that no protest (and therefore no correction) of any injustice can ever be initiated until all existing injustices have been corrected. Sorry, we're humans, and we are never going to fix it all, but that's no reason not to try to fix what we can.

    Second, you say that this is not social and cultural changes happen, and while I agree to a point, I can't help but notice that while only I can change myself, sometimes I do so when I see myself through the eyes of others -- and as a consequence gain some additional insight into my own behaviours.
     
    #46 Evangelicalhumanist, Nov 23, 2022
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2022
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  7. Watchmen

    Watchmen Well-Known Member
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    Why can’t we just agree to condemn a wrong? Why must we analyze the “optics” and alleged inconsistencies?
     
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  8. Augustus

    Augustus the Unreasonable

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    Of course the West is frequently hypocritical and sanctimonious, and people are right to highlight this. It is true though that basically everyone is too, we all notice other's transgressions more than our own, and no one can criticise all injustice equally.

    There is a bit more context that you seem to be missing though.

    Do you think LGBT England fans appreciate the gesture, or would they be equally happy if it was brushed under the carpet?

    Football has traditionally been pretty racist and homophobic, and a lot of effort has been put in to reduce this and become more inclusive.

    Qatar basically said to fans "you can come to the World Cup, as long as you don't partake in any of that gayness while you are here".

    FIFA both promotes inclusivity, but when there is enough money attached tells the players to shut their mouths and stick to football.

    It's not necessarily about changing Qatar, but continuing to promote inclusivity in their own countries and among their own fans.

    If they speak out, then folk criticise them for not speaking out equally on all the ills of the world.

    If they stay quiet, they will be criticised for showing they care little for inclusivity and are happy for LGBT people to be discriminated against as long as they get paid.

    I don't see how you can seriously promote diversity and inclusion in football, and then not mention it when the biggest footballing event is held in a place where gay fans could be imprisoned for sleeping with their spouse.

    Can you think of a way they could stay quiet about discrimination against their fans and also maintain they are committed to promoting inclusivity in English football?
     
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  9. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest Abnormal before it was fashionable
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    Even to wear an armband or kneel is "viewed as disrespectful"?
    People who oppose civil & peaceful protest on that basis
    should not be catered to with silence. Sure, sure, those laws
    are nothing new. Tis all the more reason to protest them.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This thread has some fascinating opposing perspectives...
    1) Expecting individuals to behave as the group they belong to.
    And if one's group has sins, then "Sit down & shut up!".
    2) Allowing individuals the freedom to have views not of their
    group. Let each express views with civility & conviction.

    I prefer a big steaming pile of #2.
    Don't abuse protesting players for a peaceful message
    to inspire change....just because their country has its
    own problems. Let each say as each believes.
     
    #49 Revoltingest, Nov 24, 2022
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2022
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  10. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    If the goal is to promote LGBT rights, the optics matter a lot in this case. To avoid repeating myself, I'll quote one of my earlier posts in this thread:

    We can agree to condemn a wrong; what we disagree on is that the inconsistency and selective outrage displayed in Qatar are helpful to the long-term goal of shifting cultural attitudes about LGBT rights.
     
  11. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    There are many alternatives to kneeling and wearing armbands in the manner that has happened so far that don't necessitate silence. Social media and off-pitch interviews exist, as do widely circulated press conferences. To choose a method of protest that is possibly the most likely to generate hostility may be emotionally fulfilling (even to me at times) but ultimately counterproductive if you want to promote specific cultural shifts in views.

    This is not even close to my argument, and I'm not sure where you got that from if you have read my posts in this thread.

    The point is that if I were a public figure and never or almost never spoke of my country's issues, then defying domestic laws when I was in another country and antagonizing a majority of its population would probably seem self-righteous, inconsistent, and overtly selective. This doesn't render the criticism invalid, to be sure: Qatar is indeed a country with terrible human rights conditions for multiple groups. It does, however, affect the impact of the criticism and its capacity to achieve the desired changes.

    I addressed a similar argument in my post just before this one.

    It is highly debatable whether it is "civil" to intentionally violate the laws of a country you voluntarily traveled to when doing so is unlikely to benefit the locals who suffer the persecution to begin with. Furthermore, I wasn't under the impression that any of the players' protests were individual; all of the protests so far have seemed to be coordinated gestures backed by their respective countries' soccer federations.

    1) I didn't and couldn't possibly "abuse" famous players who will never read or be affected by my words. That's such a bizarre statement, unless you meant something I missed.

    2) It is exactly the counterpoductivity to the cause of inspiring change that renders the protests mostly undesirable. The players will go home afterward; LGBT Qataris and their allies will be stuck in the country with the same old homophobic laws now coupled with hostile social backlash against perceived inconsistency and moralizing from foreign public figures representing powerful countries that have their own issues—which, as I said, many of these public figures don't bother addressing even fleetingly.

    3) My objection is not because their countries have their own problems; it's because some of them conveniently stay silent on their countries' issues but moralize to others in a way most likely to be unhelpful to promotion of diversity and inclusion, for reasons I have elaborated on here.
     
  12. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    You see the armbands as antagonistic?The message behind them is literally just that LGBTQ rights should be respected.

    What wouldn't be seen as antagonistic?
     
  13. Koldo

    Koldo Incredible Member

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    It is hard to know what exactly were the main driving forces. But it certainly can't be attributed to changes in the law nor in reliogiosity. It was definitely a social change. More and more people started coming out, and then the easier it became for other people to follow their example. I am pretty certain it wouldn't have happened if people going were being sent to jail for being gay.

    But those arguments will revolve around unshared values. The logical rationale is very simple here, trivial even, the hard part is to make someone else accept distinct values.

    This is not YEC. YEC has a lot of assumptions that could be challenged with evidence. The same is not true for anti-LGTB.

    But we do know how it works. It is pretty similar across the globe.
     
  14. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    I don't, but I'm in another minority who are also largely distrusted and discriminated against in the Arab world and, as such, my views on LGBT rights are far from representative of the majority. I just know that Arab societies generally do, especially since the armbands were specifically banned by both FIFA and Qatar. Wearing them now breaks local laws on top of everything else.

    The overwhelmingly negative and hostile reactions from Arabs on social media provide a sample of this and make me wonder how Arab LGBT people are going to benefit from this at all. The Arab world needs a lot of cultural changes and social reform, but I don't believe they will come from incidents like these.

    As for what wouldn't be seen as antagonistic, I think most pro-LGBT messages will face varying degrees of hostility in any Arab society due to the perception that they go against "religious and cultural norms," but some are much more likely to resonate well than others. An example was when an Egyptian actor, who has frequently also gotten in trouble for vocally highlighting issues in Egypt, changed his Facebook picture to a rainbow one back in 2015 when the US legalized same-sex marriage and then became one of the first Egyptian celebrities to publicly endorse LGBT rights in various media outlets. His activism has had enough influence and raised awareness so much that some of his critics said he had successfully "spread debauchery" among many people.

    These are a couple of news articles about him:

    Khaled Abol Naga responds to "closeted gay" accusations! | Al Bawaba

    Egyptian actor Khaled Abol Naga reiterates his support for gay rights - Egypt Independent

    On the other hand, from what I have seen and read so far, one of the least likely forms of protests to be received even remotely well or achieve anything helpful is one where public figures from abusive powers (such as the UK) violate other countries' local laws on purpose while staying silent about numerous major issues back home.
     
    #54 Debater Slayer, Nov 24, 2022
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2022
  15. Koldo

    Koldo Incredible Member

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    Where is the evidence those alternatives would be seen as less antagonizing and be more productive?
     
  16. Yerda

    Yerda Well-Known Member

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    It doesn't have to work by itself. I'm absolutely certain wearing an armband will do nothing to change the position of the Qatari state or correct the bigoted opinions of people who would find the message "aggressive" or "disrespectful". I'm also certain that staying quiet won't help either.

    What is important is that LGBT people watching the tournament from abroad and especially within Qatar feel that the solidarity football expresses towards them isn't forgotton because some despots bribed enough of the right people.
     
  17. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    I don't know of any systematic evidence such as a study, nor do I think the Arab world's current social and political issues would make those easy to conduct reliably. But I think various reactions whether in different media can provide at least a general overview. For example:

    "My Daughter Noura Is Now My Son Nour," Says Hesham Selim As He Comes Out In Support Of His Son's Transition | NileFM | EGYPT'S#1 FOR HIT MUSIC

    This actor was widely respected in Egypt and lived here until he passed away this year. His support for his son garnered widespread sympathy even from some people who admitted they previously knew little or nothing about transgendered people's issues.

    I have major doubts that we would have seen the same effect if a British or American soccer player had worn a trans flag armband during a 28-day sporting event without having any record of being as socially aware or as publicly concerned about their own country's abuses.
     
  18. Koldo

    Koldo Incredible Member

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    But where is the evidence concerning "Social media and off-pitch interviews" specifically, since you have mentioned those as alternatives?

    Is there any evidence of athletes making use of those methods and bringing about any change?
     
  19. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    An important consideration is whether it is wise or responsible to engage in a protest that will inevitably result in more anti-LGBT backlash in societies with widespread homophobia—thereby contributing to an even worse climate for native LGBT people and allies—just to send a message to fans that the players and federations can still send in multiple other ways.

    It's not an easy or straightforward issue, and I can see why a player would feel it was helpful to wear such an armband in these circumstances. I just don't think it will help those who are suffering the most under Qatari laws and prevalent homophobia.
     
  20. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    There's no evidence that wearing armbands in the World Cup changes homophobic societies either. I thought we were only talking about the different ways in which players could convey their messages, anyway.
     
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