"The sanction is educational because it sets the unacceptable"

A society which displays "values ​​of respect for differences" can not be content with half-measures and must oppose the "culture of humiliation", believes, in a tribune to the "World", the anthropologist Philippe Liotard.

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tribune. Between August 19 and September 14, 2019, The world has devoted some fifteen articles to the question of homophobia in football. Such frequency reveals that what happens in the stadiums questions society. In this case, simple questions can be asked: does football convey yes or no the values ​​that are attributed to it, especially that of respect? What socialization and education is it part of? And what role does this play in the stadiums?

Clearly, homophobic songs, insults and banners hinder, not just the sports minister, Roxana Maracineanu. On May 13, 2019, Nathalie Boy de la Tour, president of the Professional Football League (responsible for organizing the professional football championships), presented an action plan against homophobia, articulated in three parts: awareness, training , sanctions.

Among the latter, the referee stops games in case of homophobic remarks coming from the stands, instructions applied by the French since August and the resumption of the French football championships. It resulted in several meetings stopped, sanctions against some teams, referees in difficulty … and a media run leading, on September 10, Franceinfo, Christmas Le Graët, president of the French Football Federation (FFF), to return with clumsiness about the effects of the most publicized proposal of the anti-homophobia plan announced in May.

Read also Homophobia: the clash Maracineanu-Le Graët

The way in which the president of the powerful and rich FFF intervened is symptomatic of the difficulty with which French football questions itself. It also testifies to its resistance to seize a problem yet clear, that of the recurring use of homophobic remarks. One sentence alone illustrates the incomprehension of the President of the FFF: "I'll stop for racist shouts, that's clear. " As far as homophobic cries are concerned, we can see that things are less clear to him.

At the time, the federation – whose president has constantly reminded that it is the richest of all – shows a clear lack of professionalism. Nevertheless, the stop of the matches had the merit of making speak, and not only in the sports bars. TVs, radios, the press helped to pose (often badly) the problem. All this made it possible to recall that the sanction is educational in that it sets the threshold of the unacceptable and in that it leads to questioning the limits of the individual and collective behaviors as well as their moral justification.


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