It was just spotted that Football Manager 2018 features a chance for players to come out as gay. This applies only to 'newgen' players, the fake footballers who cycle into the game each year as the youth intake of football, so that the game isn't digitally outing any real life players who may or may not be gay. A player coming out doesn't affect their success on the pitch, but it does boost the merch sales a bit (in line with what the dev team observed happening in real life). 

So far, so cool. Except, of course, not. An army of terrible das has woken from their slumber (a mid morning nap born of eating an entire multipack of McCoy’s crisps and falling asleep in front of Loose Women, which our Pam insists on putting on) and taken exception to this. In their particular 'I'm not homophobic I'm just saying I don't want my kids exposed to it,' rhetoric, they've succeeded mightily in proving exactly why this sort of thing needs to be in games in the first place. Observe, the homophobia of yer da:

It'll be wrong to be straight soon!

It's always a belter seeing this one pop up. One imagines the phrase 'thin end of the wedge' marching towards the conversation, as if today it's a small percentage chance of a fake footballer in a game coming out, and next week The Gays will be pushing through a government initiative that requires everyone to be at least bisexual, by law. They'll be raising taxes on us next, Pam! A straight tax! You mark my words!

This response seems to come from the idea that everything is fine now. First gay people wanted to not be killed for being gay, then they wanted it to not be illegal, then they wanted gay marriage: all I'm saying, Pam, is that they have equality these days! 

Putting gay people in a football game, therefore, pushes us from 'not homophobic' to 'too much not homophobic' and dangerously close to 'straightphobic', which is where digital footballers being gay is exactly as bad as being physically and verbally abused because of who you want to get off with. The fact that Football Manager has excluded footballers from some countries from being gay because being gay is still illegal in those countries is somehow not relevant to the discussion.

What does it have to do with football?

This one's great because it allows yer da a degree of plausible deniability. I'm fine with it, Pam! I never said I wasn't fine with it! I just don't see what it has to do with football! It doesn't make you a better player, does it? Luckily for yer da, this doesn't affect the stats for the player in question, so he shouldn't have an issue once you've explained that, should he? What's that? He still does? Goodness me. 

The thing is, even if you claim there isn't, there's still a lot of interest in players' personal lives, which is why I know who Coleen Rooney is even though I have no idea who Wayne Rooney plays for. Our Pam is always reading those magazines, isn't she? It's ridiculous to pretend it isn't an issue because some footballers in real life are gay, but are faced with a hostile atmosphere. Thomas Hitzlsperger didn't come out until after he'd retired. Graeme Le Saux is straight, but was made fun of for being gay because he did really gay things like go on holiday with a man and read the Guardian. 

Apparently it's fine for a footballer to have a personal life when that involves being put on trial for raping a 19 year old girl, though. But that was different, Pam! He was acquitted at a retrial! So it's fine!

What all these das fail to grasp, though, is that the very act of saying it shouldn't be in it because they don't care is iron clad evidence that they do care and it therefore should be in it.

Going on about political correctness

'Political correctness' just means 'not saying horrible discriminatory things, because why would you go out of your way to upset someone?' but to yer da it apparently means 'being reminded that gay people exist at all.' Political correctness is a favourite bugbear of yer da's; he uses it to blame both the fact that he's not supposed to yell 'OI OI!' out of his van and beep the horn when an attractive lady crosses in the road in front of him even though it's just a lovely compliment and that the crisps he ate earlier have red sodium warnings on them these days.

A pleasing side effect of the 'PC [something] gone [something else]' phrasing is that you can image it's a Police Constable called that doing something outrageous.

Here, for example, I like to think that Police Constable Bollocks has finally snapped after all the relentless teasing about their name.

Think of the children

Football Manager is of course designed primarily for under-sevens, so yer da might well share Stephen's concern that children might get the terrible notion that it's okay to be gay.

Won't Somebody Please Think of the Children is a weird one, because yer da is usually at pains to point out he isn't homophobic. He knows being a homophobe is a bad thing, and he's not a bad man. Pam works with a, you know, one of them at her Saturday job, and he's got no problem with him. So it's not that there's anything wrong with him, it's just that PC Nonsense (see above) has redefined homophobia too much! But this one has him over a barrel, because if he's not homophobic then why is it bad for children to be aware of The Gays? In most cases the average da, when pressed on this, will devolve into a spluttering repetition of 'It's just not right, is it?'

Transfer them to Brighton

Because Brighton is – Pam! Brighton – Pam! Pam, d'you get it? Pam?... Brighton!

I'm boycotting the game!

If yer da is saying this in the mistaken belief that he represents the majority, the reasonable, the voice of the normal working man: off you fuck, then.