Fans of English football club Tottenham Hotspur are upset that the country’s football governing body plans to ban the use of the term ‘Yid,’ and they’re warning they’ll explore legal avenues to preserve their right to use the term.
Earlier this week, the Football Association said it believes that the word “is likely to be considered offensive by the reasonable observer and considers the term to be inappropriate in a football setting,” adding that the “use of the term in a public setting could amount to a criminal offense.”
But a statement from the Tottenham Hotspur Supporters’ Trust, an unofficial group representing the club’s fans, countered: “Whilst we fully recognize that Spurs fans’ use of the Y word and associated identity may have caused some upset to members of the Jewish community, we sincerely believe that no Spurs fan uses the term in a malicious way.”
Many supporters of the club refer to themselves as the ‘Yid Army,’ a reference to the historically Jewish character of the London neighborhood where the team’s stadium is located.
“THST believes that rather than focus on Tottenham Hotspur fans using the term, more work needs to be done to educate supporters of other clubs as to why it is completely unacceptable for them to continue to sing songs and chants that do not focus solely on Spurs fans but slur the Jewish community as a whole,” the statement said further.
“THST is categorically against ejections and banning orders for the use of the term by Tottenham Hotspur supporters in a match environment and will be seeking advice from both the FSF and the legal profession as to whether there is scope for such measures under current legislation,” the Supporters’ Trust statement concluded.