It's Time to Retire the "Pink Cows" Pejorative

This probably won't be a terribly popular post, so I'll keep it short and get right to the point. Since I became a D.C. United fan in 2009, DCU fans - including Supporters Groups themselves - have been referring to the New York Red Bulls as the "Pink Cows" as a way to tear them down a peg. It's never sat particularly well with me, and I think we should retire it.

I'll ask you to do a brief thought experiment with me and ask yourself the following questions. Putting as fine a point on it as possible, what is the implication of insulting them by calling them "pink cows"? What are we implying when we equate "pink" and "cows" with inferior?

The "pink" pejorative calls to mind belittling on either the basis of gender or sexual orientation, neither of which are bases on which we should be disparaging people if we truly want to create a safe space where all are welcome. "Cows" similarly evokes disparagement based on gender. Language has power, and, even if unintentional, using this particular angle to make fun of another team is implicitly harmful to people who have these traits.

Just so I'm clear on this, I don't think whoever came up with it meant any harm or had any malice when they came up with it. I also think that the way we - or at least I - think about these things has evolved since the Metrostars became the Red Bulls. And I think it's time that we, as supporters, evolve beyond the use of this particular term, which, at its core, isn't really even funny.

Thanks for listening, and I hope you'll at least consider it. Vamos United.

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