After nearly three months of soul searching and downright rage, I’ve finally decided to put pen to paper or should I say finger to keyboard, in an attempt to share my feelings, no easy task when you consider the subject matter. The vile objectification of women, along with “Lads banter” has always touched a raw nerve with me; with the anonymity of the internet, social media has created the platform for such behaviour to go relatively unchallenged.
What first triggered me into writing this and share it with fellow St Pauli fans, was this photo which was posted onto my timeline on Facebook by someone, who purports to be a St Pauli fan. It came with the option to “choose” your team ahead of the derby between Palmeiras and Corinthians…
This picture is taken from a page on facebook (I’ve altered it)
At first, I did what probably a lot of you would do, I shrugged my shoulders and moved on, but as time passed by this image kept bugging me and eventually I was Raging. How could someone who appears to hold similar values to me think posting this is acceptable? When I questioned him, informing him that St Pauli fans supposedly stand against sexism, I was told that it was “Light hearted fun and not sexist”. Basically chill out Mick. Well…I didn’t “chill out”. I took it upon myself to find out what other “supporters” of St Pauli and similar clubs were posting. It seems that we have a long way to go in tackling this so called “fun”.
I don’t expect all fans of St Pauli to think like me, I’m a realist after all, but I would expect at least a few of the values held dear by the fans to have rubbed off, otherwise why support St Pauli?
Why, when we stand firm against all forms of racism & homophobia do we appear to be apathetic when it comes to confronting people who post this bile?
Is it because as men, we feel that questioning the motives and views held by other men makes us somehow less masculine? Are we really so insecure that we need to join in? Or do you really just see women as objects and an easy target for your immature fun?
Talking of immature fun, what happened recently, from none other than Daniel Ginczek, our star striker, shows this perfectly. Again Facebook was the outlet for, and I’m trying hard to believe this, yet another example of this “laddish” behaviour.
Mr Ginczek posted a photo of himself wearing the T Shirt shown below
I posted my disgust immediately along with about ten comments from German fans. As I’m unable to speak German, I had no idea what these comments said but at least two of them seemed to be giving it their thumbs up. Thankfully the photo was then cropped and subsequently removed within about fifteen minutes. Now people seemed to have taken this removal as closure, well I couldn’t, I became angrier than at any time during writing this.
How could someone, who is not only connected to the club but is employed by them, be so ignorant? I’ve listened to countless people, over the last week say “He’s only young” “We all do daft things”.
Jesus, these guys are role models to all our kids, they have great influence on them. Does no one speak to these players about this?
Even my eight year old knows what St Pauli stands for…
I again found the apologists far outnumbered people who felt like me.
Moving away from football, but hopefully, staying with a topic that should be close to our hearts. The recent goings on within certain sections of the radical left in the UK have shown that it’s not just “lads” who have scant disregard for women. The SWP (Socialist Workers Party) and even the Anarchist community have have faced accusations of using intimidation in order to cover up accusations of sexual harassment and even rape. Here’s a link to article relating to SWP debacle.
The male dominated hierarchy within these organisations is accused of surviving and suppressing any dissent through intimidation. The accusation that the people within the parties/groups are allegedly more concerned with protecting their “image” and subjecting the women who’ve made the allegations to vile internet trolling, rather than protecting female comrades, I find repulsive.
With St Pauli, It’s the image of the fans and what we stand for that is been attacked, but still we seem to be doing nothing. Why?
What I find heartbreaking, is that I was attracted to the radical left & St Pauli because I thought I had found people who thought like me. Turns out that some men behave like dicks no matter what their politics are, seeing women as mere objects.
It’s time to stop being a dick.