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American Outlaws Tifo Problematically Calls Gold Cup, an Object, a "She"

It's not the best idea to give the Gold Cup—an inanimate object for which men compete—a female identity.

by Liam Daniel Pierce
Jul 8 2017, 9:45pm

Logan Bowles—USA TODAY Sports

Hey American Outlaws, you've got some work to do, friends. You might think that just because you watch international soccer, you get a pass for having progressive world views (see: college bro playing Manu Chao on the quad), but check yourself. For example, if you're going to spend what must be dozens of hours orchestrating a giant tifo for a nationally televised game, it's probably best not to make objectifying, sexist remarks.

For the uninitiated, the American Outlaws are the US men's national soccer team's largest supporters group, and a tifo is a kind of large-scale coordinated effort by fans—usually in the form of a banner. Now that we've got that out of the way, just check out this mess from American Outlaws' Nashville chapter:

Fox Sports—not necessarily known for its progressivism—even cut away from the tifo as it was revealed before the U.S. kicked off against Panama in their opening group stage match in Tennessee. If you're still not getting it: the simple lesson here is that you shouldn't refer to an inanimate object that men compete over as a woman. Because that's drawing a clearly chauvinistic, objectifying equivalent that damagingly works both ways.

Sure, the banner might be referencing the Van Halen song "Panama," but maybe they could have chosen a different lyric?

Thankfully, someone did some quick work to correct the Outlaws' grave error:

For a national team that already struggles with issues of equality between genders—the unfairly paid women's team is mind-blowingly good—maybe it's best to make an effort to not directly insult women. Yikes.

UPDATE

And now U.S. Soccer has endorsed the sexist banner because of course: