Saturday, 22 October 2011


A soccer game was held today. Not unusual for a Sunday afternoon in Santiago.

But this time, citing security concerns, one of the teams, Universidad Católica, announced that they would limit the amount of Colo Colo supporters in their stadium (which is located in one of the city's finer neighbourhoods). Policy duly took up the task of ensuring not only that Colo Colo supporters did not enter the stadium, but that they did not get anywhere near the stadium. People wearing Colo Colo t-shirts were taken off buses headed in a suspiciously sports-fanatical direction. Those who refused to halt their travels or show identity cards were arrested -- about 100 people in total.

Some are accusing the police of being classist, as Colo Colo fans tend to come from a lower middle class background. This may be, or maybe not. Far worse, it seems to me, is to be detained by policy, and in some cases arrested, on the basis of the T-shirt one is wearing. At at time when the country is tense, student leaders travel to Europe to wallow in admiration from aging revolutionaries, when the crisis of capitalism is leading to occupy movements around the world, Chile is dedicating its precious resources to making sure we wear the right T-shrit. Nice.

No comments: