Soccer….Family Style


#AUnitedFront against Fascism, the View From the Iowa Caucus
August 23, 2019, 10:03 pm
Filed under: Major League Soccer, Supporter Culture

In case you’re new to my blog: Yes, I am a member of the Timbers Army and I live in Des Moines, Iowa. How this came to be is explained here, but suffice it to say, I may be uniquely qualified to talk about the intersection of soccer and politics.

Here’s where the story starts for me: 20190823_194942.jpg

Truth be told, I got addicted to politics because of soccer. I was working to build a soccer specific stadium in Des Moines in 2002, and the project couldn’t move forward because we couldn’t get it approved by the Urbandale City Council. Yes I’m still mad and yes I have voted in every election since then no matter how small the office. Politics is your whole life, and we need to find a way to make it less toxic, but banning it isn’t the way.

Living in Iowa, I’ve seen it happen. We get together in a high school auditorium or gym every four years and have the Iowa Caucus. No hiding in a voting booth and secretly pulling a lever. You have to stand up in front of all your neighbors and publicly declare who you support. Then, there’s re-alignment…you need to convince your neighbors, through civil discourse if their candidate isn’t viable, they should come join your corner. So you better come prepared to state your case and be convincing in a way that doesn’t make the neighborhood awkward from that day forward.

But here’s the thing: we need to have a conversation about this banning political stuff. Because that’s a slippery slope. Is a rainbow flag political? Is a red hat political? What about a whole section wearing red hats? In the Timber’s front office double down statement they write “Major League Soccer believes the Iron Front symbol is inherently political because it has been co-opted by antifa.” Let’s pull that apart.

Antifa isn’t a thing. There’s nothing parked at Antifa.com. My husband wrote on Facebook “Antifa is a concept, a belief, a way of viewing the world and not an organization. Antifa is short for anti-fascist. There isn’t an antifa group, there are people who believe in the antifa way of viewing the world.” Since the 1930s the Iron Front has been a symbol of being antifascist, long before anyone coined the term “Antifa.”

800px-Three_Arrows_election_poster_of_the_Social_Democratic_Party_of_Germany,_1932_-_Gegen_Papen,_Hitler,_Thälmann

So to say that we can’t use this symbol because a group that doesn’t exist doesn’t hold water.

Plus, what is the equivalent symbol that you would ban on the other end of the political spectrum? The “Don’t Tread” snake? Nah….you know what symbol has been corrupted by that side? The American Flag. Are we going to ban the American flag for getting politicized? See how silly that sounds?

MLS: It’s time to get on the right side of history. re-write your policy to be human rights focused, not parroting some BS FoxNews soundbite.

We are the Timbers Army. We are relentlessly anti-fascist. You know how the song goes, you love it in your promos.

You can’t stop us, we are the Rose City.


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