A British comic appeared to shred £10,000 ($11,000) in a video after failing to obtain a response from David Beckham over his controversial role as a Qatar World Cup ambassador.
On Sunday, Joe Lycett started tweeting an hourly countdown till his UK midday deadline (7am ET). At 12 pm GMT, he posted a video of himself shredding the cash on www.benderslikebeckham.com, a web site Lycett had been tweeting hyperlinks to.
He later posted it on his social media accounts with the caption “a platform for progress,” seemingly a reference to a press release made by the soccer star in a pre-recorded message at Qatar’s Supreme Committee’s Generation Amazing youth competition in Doha, the place he used these phrases to explain this 12 months’s World Cup.
On November 13, Lycett, who describes himself as queer on his web site, posted a video on Twitter, saying he would donate £10,000 to charities supporting “queer folks in soccer” or put the cash via the shredder, together with “Beckham’s repute as a homosexual icon,” if the previous England captain didn’t lower ties with Qatar throughout the week. Homosexuality in Qatar is illegitimate and punishable by as much as three years in jail.
Beckham didn’t reply and, within the video posted on his Twitter feed on Sunday, Lycett appeared to place piles of cash into an industrial shredder whereas carrying a rainbow-colored high.
He then curtsied for the digicam and walked away. The comic didn’t instantly reply to CNN when requested to verify whether or not he had shredded actual cash.
Qatar’s Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy just lately informed CNN that the 2022 World Cup will “be an inclusive, protected event” and stated “everyone seems to be welcome, no matter race, background, faith, gender, orientation or nationality.”
Earlier this week, world soccer governing physique FIFA referred CNN to the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy for all feedback associated to Lycett’s criticism of Beckham and Qatar.
Qatari LGBTQ activist: They are taking part in soccer over our graves
– Source: CNN
Beckham, contacted by CNN on November 14 via his representatives, declined to touch upon the criticism surrounding his ambassadorship. CNN reached out to his representatives after Lycett appeared to shred cash, however didn’t obtain a response on the time of publication.
“Qatar dreamed of bringing the World Cup to a spot that it had by no means been earlier than, however that it would not be sufficient simply to realize issues on the pitch,” Beckham stated on the youth competition. “The pitch can be a platform for progress.
“Dreams can come true. That is why you’re right here. You share Generation Amazing’s twin passions for the sport of soccer and for making the world a extra tolerant and inclusive place.”
A report from Human Rights Watch (HRW) revealed in October documented alleged instances of beatings and sexual harassment whereas in detention. According to victims interviewed by Human Rights Watch, safety forces allegedly compelled transgender girls to attend conversion remedy classes at a “behavioral healthcare” heart sponsored by the federal government.
“Qatari authorities want to finish impunity for violence in opposition to LGBT folks. The world is watching,” stated Rasha Younes of Human Rights Watch.
A Qatari official informed CNN that the HRW allegations “include data that’s categorically and unequivocally false.”
Lycett, nonetheless, took intention at Beckham.
“You’re the primary Premiership footballer to do shoots with homosexual magazines like Attitude, to talk brazenly about your homosexual followers,” Lycett stated in final week’s video message.
“Now, it is 2022. And you signed a reported £10 million cope with Qatar to be their ambassador in the course of the FIFA World Cup.”
“If you do not, by midday subsequent Sunday, I’ll throw this cash right into a shredder simply earlier than the opening ceremony of the World Cup and stream it stay on a web site I’ve registered known as benderslikebeckham.com.”
Lycett just isn’t the primary individual or group to criticize Beckham for his ambassadorship.
Adelaide United participant Josh Cavallo, who got here out as homosexual final 12 months, informed CNN Sport he wish to see Beckham utilizing his platform to assist the LGBTQ neighborhood as an alternative of selling the Qatari authorities.
“If somebody like David Beckham together with his platform does get round us and turns into an ally that we wish him to be, it’s actually useful.
“If he might take that subsequent step and present what he means to the LGBTQ neighborhood, that may be improbable.”