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Should people living in the US cheer US? (World Cup related)

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Should people living in the US cheer US? (World Cup related)

Old 06-18-02, 10:42 PM
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Should people living in the US cheer US? (World Cup related)

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...8/BA191531.DTL

Melting pot boils over for World Cup Immigrants' loyalties tested

Heads bowed, men began to slip out the door at El Trebol in San Francisco's Mission District about 10 minutes before the match ended.

With the steam of homemade tamales still warming the air, the last "Mex-i-co! Mex-i-co!" chants faded into epithets directed at the referee, and the el Tricolor faithful who had packed the bar to watch their team play the United States had accepted the unthinkable.

The United States -- the economic superpower many Mexicans see as an arrogant neighbor -- was about to beat Mexico at soccer, the sport that fills their native country's soul, and it hurt. Especially so when done on the international stage of the World Cup.

Everyone from U.S. players to Pat Buchanan has interpreted the fervor of Mexican immigrants for their native country's team as a case of ingratitude, if not downright anti-Americanism. To the guys watching the Univision feed at 1:30 a.m., however, it's no different from what German Americans will be doing Friday when the U.S. team plays Germany -- and they wonder why they're being singled out.

"If you had lived in China for 22 years, then the U.S. played China, would you cheer for China?" asked Jose Salinas, a Mission District mechanic who has lived in the United States for 22 years after immigrating from Mexico. "To mix sports and politics is like putting Tabasco sauce on spaghetti."

Others say new immigrants shouldn't be surprised. "We have a history of asking people to give up their cultural identities," said Susan Zieff, a San Francisco State University professor who specializes in the sociocultural study of physical activity. "In an event like the World Cup, this nationalism becomes stronger.

"We say, 'If you're living here, you vote American. You be American. You cheer American,' " Zieff said.

For years, U.S. players have complained about not having a home-field advantage when playing Mexico on U.S. turf. In 1998, after losing before an overwhelmingly pro-Mexico crowd of 91,255 in Los Angeles, and being jeered as he walked off the field, U.S. player Alexi Lalas said:

"I'm all for roots and understanding where you came from. But tomorrow morning all of those people are going to have to get up and work in the United States and live in the United States and have all the benefits of living in the United States."

Buchanan cited the event in a presidential stump speech two years later as evidence that anti-Americanism "had taken root in the barrios."


Sick of playing before pro-Mexico crowds, U.S. soccer officials bypassed a possible $2.5 million payday in Los Angeles by scheduling a World Cup qualifying match in Columbus, Ohio, in February. Game-time temperature: 29 degrees, inspiring the Mexican press to call it La Guerra Fria ("The Cold War"). The U.S. team won, 2-0.

The U.S. desire to pack the house with (U.S.) flag-wavers has gotten to the point where Hispanic fans have filed a class-action lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation in U.S. District Court in Virginia.

The suit alleges that the federation's ticket distribution procedures for a U.S.-Honduras World Cup qualifying match last fall illegally denied equal access to Hispanics.

If there was a plan that day, it wasn't that effective; Honduran fans dominated the crowd, and cheered their team on to a 3-2 win.

These soccer-as-life border skirmishes reflect the culture in many ways.

"For some people, it's especially intense in California because of the number of people of Mexican background," said UC Berkeley public policy Professor Michael Trevino, who teaches a course on race, ethnicity and public policy -- and is a soccer fan whose grandparents were born in Mexico.

"For some people that's intimidating. Some people think, 'Oh my God. They're going to take over. We're going to become Quebec.' "

But much beyond-the-pitch politics is lost on recent U.S. immigrants, many of whom have left a rough life in search of a better one the United States.

To Luis Castenada, a 24-year-old Mission District house painter, Americans are confusing love of country with love of futbol. Through an interpreter, he said Mexican-dominated soccer audiences don't have anything to do with anti-Americanism.

"A lot of Americans don't support soccer -- period," said Castenada, who has has lived in the United States for four years. "Soccer is still young in this country."

Still, the signs point to the U.S.-Mexico rivalry becoming more intense -- and political. Not only was Monday's match marred by a number of fouls, but the players didn't exchange jerseys afterward, as is customary.

It said something when Mexican President Vicente Fox watched the match with his Cabinet at 1:30 a.m. local time. Feeding the fire was the Mexico City paper Reforma, which blasted the front-page headline, "It's War," on Sunday.

"People say it shouldn't be something more than sports, but at this point it is," said Pedro Tuyub, editor of the Mission District bilingual newspaper El Tecolote. "But people shouldn't worry. For 90 minutes, Mexicans forget where they are. We forget borders. We think we are Mexicans again."
Old 06-18-02, 10:44 PM
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-----> Moved to the step-child Sports Forum

I think people should root on who they want to.

This is a free country
Old 06-18-02, 10:52 PM
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Is anyone surprised... I mean come on it's Buchanan. Personally I say let them cheer for who they want to cheer for. After all the best team won anyway and now they still have someone they can cheer for

I have to say I disagree w/ Jose though... I like "Tabasco sauce on spaghetti."
Old 06-18-02, 10:54 PM
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If you're an immigrant or course you're going to [email protected] support for your native country. Especially since parts of the US are basically Mexico Jr. anyway...But it all fades in a generation or so. My grandparents are Mexican immigrants and they rooted for Mexico, I however support the US (and Senegal) Now I suppose I'll be kicked out of la raza or something
Old 06-18-02, 10:57 PM
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I would surely support Ireland in favour of the US. No question about it, that's where my loyalties lie, maybe if I had kids they would cheer for the USA, but I am irish 100%
Old 06-18-02, 11:05 PM
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I just wish someone would make a remixed version of New Order's "World in Motion" tune about the World Cup some years back with U.S. cheers instead of England. I'm getting into playing it more this week, but would like to hear:

"We're cheering for U.S., U.S.A.!"

instead of

"We're cheering for England, England Eh!"

that is being cheered periodically in it, especially if we and England can both get by and play each other in the next round.

Also happy to see Turkey, Senegal, and South Korea all win. For once here's a tournament that the teams I've all cheered for are winning! I'll be watching this weekend hoping they continue to do so.

I'm of German ancestry, but I'll cheer on the U.S. this Friday!
Old 06-19-02, 12:00 AM
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I'm Korean (born in Chicago, IL) and I root for both Korea and the US. Thus I'm glad they tied. However, if I had to choose, I would give the slight edge to Korea. I've never been to Korea and frankly believe I would not enjoy it there but it has a soft spot in my heart. Also I see it as a David vs. Goliath kind of deal. US will win in most sports that I care about against Korea so why not them this time? That's my stance.

Old 06-19-02, 12:22 AM
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USA
Old 06-19-02, 01:49 AM
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Why would you live and enjoy the benefits of a country if you don't support it? No one is forcing anyone to live in the U.S.
Old 06-19-02, 01:59 AM
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Why would you choose to live in a country founded and built around the principal of freedom of choice and then not be allowed to cheer for whoever you want?

Nobody is forced to live here, and they should not be coerced to cheer for the US team.
Old 06-19-02, 02:29 AM
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Originally posted by RandyC
Why would you choose to live in a country founded and built around the principal of freedom of choice and then not be allowed to cheer for whoever you want?

Nobody is forced to live here, and they should not be coerced to cheer for the US team.
If one was so supportive and proud of their native land, why would they not choose to live there?
Old 06-19-02, 02:49 AM
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Originally posted by Bust


If one was so supportive and proud of their native land, why would they not choose to live there?
Because they have non-sports related problems over in their country? I've heard that good soccer teams aren't indicative of a good standard of living. Go Figure.

But, you're right...they sure as hell better cheer for the US. It's not like we have a "seperation of futbol and state" clause in the Constitution to cover their @sses.
Old 06-19-02, 02:57 AM
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Originally posted by ZenerDiode

But, you're right...they sure as hell better cheer for the US.
Hell Yeah!! Word up ZenerDiode!!
Old 06-19-02, 03:09 AM
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a person should be able to cheer for whichever team they want to.
Old 06-19-02, 03:49 AM
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I can't believe what I'm reading. I hope you guys aren't serious. Cheer for the US or get out? That's the impression I'm getting from some of you. Although not all Americans are like this, it makes sense now why a lot of people in other parts of the world think a lot of Americans are arrogant.
Old 06-19-02, 03:50 AM
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I think the problem is that there isn't the widespread support from the American people for FOOTBALL than the ethnic (and everyone else for that matter) groups have.
What percentage of the country knows that the USA side are into the quarter finals?
A little idea would be to call the schoolground knock about soccer, but for the league and world stage call it football.
The term has the recognition, and sounds a damn sight beter than soccer, without people laughing off the sport because it's called soccer.

As a ethnic minority in the UK (Chinese), people don't question me if I don't support the home side (but I do), as a country that is known for it's freedom of speech, allow the people to decide for themselves, there's nothing worse than being forced to support a tam you have no desire of supporting. IMO of course.
Old 06-19-02, 04:03 AM
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For the record, I was being extremely sarcastic with my comment (especially that part about the constitution). It's hard to convey sarcasm through written words sometimes tho.
Old 06-19-02, 05:44 AM
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maybe part of the reason we dont fully support America is because "Americans" will never see us as Americans? I've lived in America all my life but the first thing anyone thinks when they see me is that I'm Asian...not American. So why wouldnt my loyalties be mixed? Bust, would it be so easy to fully support a country whose "average citizen" would never see you as one?
Old 06-19-02, 06:22 AM
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I also think it's ridiculous slamming immigrants for rooting for the country where they grew up. But, the part about them sueing over where games are played is not cool with me. It's also kind of funny that some Mexicans are turning this into some political fiasco when most U.S. citizens are basically clueless about what's going on in the World Cup.

Do any of you guys think that one reason soccer is not more popular is because our country is so big? I mean, the team can't play in every single big city. And in huge countries like Brazil maybe their team only plays in a few cities (and they don't have pro sports competition with basketball, football and baseball). With all the competition with other sports, I'm not that surprised soccer is only making small inroads here. I played soccer when I was a kid (in leagues) and I'm totally into the World Cup, but I can see a little why some people might be apathetic. I mean, I like sports, but I'm a bit apathetic towards Atlanta sports teams simply because most of the time I have better things to do than watch every move... and can't afford it anyway.
Old 06-19-02, 08:12 AM
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People should be allowed to root for who they want to win. Hell, a co-worker of mine was rooting for Poland because his last name ends in ski.


On the other hand, I feel that if they love Mexico so much, then perhaps they should consider moving back there.
Old 06-19-02, 08:33 AM
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I have a quck solution to all this: Do what I do and cheer for whoever is winning when you turn on the game!


Well actually, being hispanic, living in the US, I have to cheer for either germany, brazil, or italy, usually germany. They kick ass. And in Fifa world cup 2002, I'm winning the damn world cup with about 200 goals scored in 5 games
Old 06-19-02, 09:03 AM
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hey, im american. born in america. I cheered for Argentina. Who the hell cares? Cheer for whoever you want!
Old 06-19-02, 09:22 AM
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We have a soccer team? Go USA!!
Old 06-19-02, 09:40 AM
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This is ridiculous. I was born in Boston, but have lived in Florida for over almost 20 years now.. I still cheer for The Celtics, the Patriots, the Red Sox... How is that ANY different than someone from another country now in the USA cheering for their home team in the World Cup?
Old 06-19-02, 09:41 AM
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I rooted for Iran in '98 over the US in the WC. I was born and raised in the US and am completely American. However, my heritage is Iranian. I decided to root for Iran in that game because they were big underdogs and it meant so much more to them and the vast majority of citizens of Iran than it did to Americans.

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