Originally posted on Imagine2050
Last night, fans of the Major League Soccer (MLS) club Chicago Fire unveiled a massive banner displaying the rich diversity of the club’s city, supporters and team. The banner featured the Chicago skyline with a backdrop of the rainbow flag with the words "Our City Our Club Our Diversity Our Strength".
The display is part of a month-long MLS-wide effort by fans affiliated to the Independent Supporters Council to take a stance against racism and bigotry of any kind in recognition of The International Day For the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on March 21. Supporters in Vancouver, Washington DC, Kansas City and elsewhere have showed their support by having displays at MLS matches this month and last.
The display put on by the Fire fans last night, however is unique. Never before in MLS or any U.S. professional sports have supporters taken such a visible stance against homophobia. Campaigns and events such as the Pride Cup put on by MLS club Columbus Crew and the It Gets Better Project which is directed at empowering LGBT youth, have had many professional athletes sign on, but an open display produced and put on BY SUPPORTERS is a rare thing indeed. Soccer supporters in other countries, most notably Germany, have made similar displays but this is a first in North America.
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