A Zapopan city councilor wants his municipality to take a lead in trying to eradicate the homophobic chant of “eeeeh puto” that many Mexican soccer fans yell every time an opposition goalie takes a goal kick.
The chant has been widely condemned but many fans are unrepentant and refuse to stop it, arguing that it is part of the country’s sporting culture and is not really homophobic. The word puto is a slur for a male prostitute.
The Mexican Soccer Federation (FMF) has been warned that sanctions could ultimately lead to the national team having to play in empty stadiums, or even not participating in international tournaments.
Despite pleas by the FMF, players, coaches and some responsible fans’ groups for fans to desist, the offensive chant was clearly audible during the recent Copa de Oro tournament in the United States.
The chant is also commonplace at games in the domestic league, the Liga MX, and is regularly heard in bars and restaurants where fans congregate during games.
Zapopan councilor Alejandro Pineda, of the National Action Party (PAN), has presented an initiative to modify city ordinances to make the chant illegal and apply sanctions to venues where it occurs.
This would include the Chivas’ Omnilife Stadium and hundreds of bars and restaurants in the municipality. Exactly how these establishments are expected to make large numbers of people toe the line, Pineda does not explain.
Penalties could include fines, closure of the venue and, possibly, arrests.