Major League Soccer is notorious for being dictatorial and heavy-handed with supporters groups. Recently, Minnesota United and MLS shut out the logo of the Red Loons from being included in a tifo at today’s match. Here is the Red Loon statement:
Major League Soccer’s new season begins Friday, March 3rd with Portland Timbers hosting newcomers Minnesota United. This match will kickoff a season long fundraiser hosted by the Red Loons, a Minnesota United supporters group.
It started as a gag, a joke. Red Loons, the Marxist supporters group for Minnesota United. The slogan–“Soccer. Beer. Labor.” As a dirty Marxist with a complicated relationship to Trotsky, I got my shirt immediately.
Then things stopped being funny in our country & it became clearer and clearer that those of us who are anti-racist, anti-fascist, pro-labor, welcoming of new faces, and loving of community needed to stand up. We need to be heard over the din of hateful nationalists.
But we’re soccer fans. Sports aren’t political. Well, unless you aren’t political. And by not political you mean complacent and happy with your privileged place in the status quo.
Turns out Red Loons are agitators. We love Minnesota United (and we loved all the passed incarnations of Minnesota soccer). As our team joins Major League Soccer, it’s vital that there be independent voices, agitators, keeping our team active in the community.
The Red Loons is a soccer supporters group dedicated to supporting Minnesota United FC. We are a coalition of Marxists and progressives who recognize soccer as a sport of communities and we are dedicated to mobilizing community to fight bigotry, fascism, and rank capitalism. We want to use the community that soccer builds to create spaces of inclusion, positivity, and hope.
So, the Red Loons have organized a season long fundraiser open to all.
Here’s how it works. In the team photo before the match, we’ll count the number of players smiling and the number of players with a serious expression. The smiles get donated to International Institute of Minnesota, and the serious warrant donations to Centro de Trabajadores Unidos en Lucha.
Pick which one you want (or both). So, let’s say you pledge $0.10 a smile. If all eleven players are smiling, then your pledge for that game is $1.10. Your pledge will be calculated every match over the 34 game regular season with the donations collected and given at season’s end.
This is the first action by the Red Loons. we hope you’ll join our efforts whether you’re a Minnesota United FC supporter or not, whether you’re a soccer fan or not, or whether you’re a Minnesotan or not.