Danish pro soccer player Viktor Fischer called out fans after they twice this week used gay slurs in chants against him.
“I experienced specific songs against me, directed at me by name, saying I was gay,” Fischer, 24. said. “That’s not the problem. I have nothing against being called one thing or another.
“The problem for me here is that the word ‘gay’ was used as an insult. That is a very, very bad culture for young people and generally for everyone who comes to a football stadium to see football,” he told TV2.
“There’s something of a culture in elite sport, in football, which is based on just being tough, keeping quiet, because that makes you a strong sportsman. But it’s not about being a strong sportsman. It’s about the culture at [stadiums] needing to be better. It’s about ‘homosexual’ not being an insult. It never should have been [an insult], and especially in 2019 in Denmark, it should not be anymore.”
In this video from Twitter, fans can be heard singing “Fischer is gay” repeatedly.
The story did not specify how Fischer defines his sexuality, but that’s not important. What matters is his realization that “gay” is a slur in this context and not acceptable.
Fischer was targeted with the slur in a game Sunday where he played for FC Copenhagen and also on Monday in a game he wasn’t even involved in (he has played 21 games for the Danish national team and is well-known among fans).
The Danish football association said it is considering disciplinary action while it condemned the chants.
Denmark’s leading LGBTQ group praised Fischer, while lamenting that there are no openly gay pro soccer players in the country.
“It’s a challenge that this is not a culture in which it’s possible [to come out], and there’s not enough acceptance for all segments of Danish society,” said Peter Holk Svendsen, head of LGBT Danmark.