LGBTQ community groups were considered more vulnerable as they became a matter of discussion everywhere. Recently, the much-awaited 2022 FIFA World Cup has been the center of attraction ubiquitously as it was the first biggest event happening after the outbreak of the global pandemic.
Soccer fans all over the world were very excited to cheer for their favorite teams and players. But even between these hot matches of the 32 teams, LGBTQ managed to be a matter of discussion here. But how?
Before the 2022 FIFA World Cup held in Qatar, FIFA president Gianni Infantino asked the 32 teams to concentrate just on the game and encouraged them to have a healthy fight.
But just days before the game, some changes were made by the organizers which changed the whole plans of the players. Earlier they banned the use of alcohol inside and near the stadiums.
What Is The Issue?
Later in November, there were some disagreements between FIFA and the seven European nations. The captains of these seven teams were planning on wearing a special anti-discrimination armband, which lead to an argument.
And as per FIFA’s rules, the plans were dropped at the last minute which raged the players of the seven teams including England, Wales, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Switzerland, and Denmark.
Before the game, the teams were asked to give out a joint statement that confirms that the captains won’t wear the OneLove armband. And if they failed to do so, it was instructed that the captains will be given a yellow card at kick-off. But what really is the OneLove armband?
The OneLove armband is a token of love created to use the power of soccer to promote involvement and to deliver a message to the world against discrimination of any kind. Since the whole world is putting their heart and soul into the game, the seven teams along with Norway and Sweden designed this special band to show their support.
The idea was approved by UEFA and they showed their support through a statement that confirmed full support. They even approved the use of the OneLove armbands throughout the September international window.
As FIFA threatens actions on captains wearing the OneLove armbands at the World Cup in Qatar, LGBTQ+ rights activists and campaigners have come forward against such an offensive rule. Stonewall, the LGBTQ+ charity, posted on their official Twitter that by discouraging sports sanctions and preventing the players from wearing the OneLove armbands, FIFA is ignoring the criticisms of human rights abuse under the carpet.
In Qatar, the LGBTQ+ community is being illegalized for being who they really are. Even though they repeatedly urged “everyone is welcome,” people were unaware of the fact that there were huge concerns over the treatment of queer community in the Gulf states.
Same-sex relationships were considered illegal in these countries and those who violate their rules are even sentenced to death or will be punished with detention. In such a case, using the rainbow armband in a global event is more like a sensitive topic for them.
With a heartless action against the queer community, people believe that the country doing such things that abuse the rights of their citizens shouldn’t have been awarded the honor of hosting a global prestigious event.
Because of such an action Wales, England, and the rest of the European countries have promised to do as suggested. Since the football organizers have made it clear that those who failed to do so will be booked or forced to leave the pitch, players have no choice.
After knowing the public-spirited action of the European countries, numerous LGBTQ+ communities showed their love towards the players through posts and tweets. They even appreciated the team’s efforts in pulling the attention of the masses on the horrendous human rights abuses of the LGBTQ community in Qatar.
A network of LGBTQ+ fan groups in the UK named ‘Pride in Football’ suggested that by such a heartless rule, FIFA is forbidding the fundamental and basic human rights to freedom of speech of the players.