Skip to comments.NBA Player 'Comes Out' -- but Tolerance Cuts Both Ways
Posted on 05/02/2013 4:25:39 AM PDT by Kaslin
Compared to the hell Jackie Robinson went through, Jason Collins is getting a ticker tape parade.
Collins, a 12-year National Basketball Association player, recently wrote a column in which he announced that he is gay: "I didn't set out to be the first openly gay (male) athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I'm happy to start the conversation."
When comedian Ellen DeGeneres came out in 1997, she appeared on the cover of Time magazine with the earth-shattering headline, 'Yep, I'm Gay.' With a general population that surveys put at about 4 percent homosexual (although estimates run as high as 5 to 10 percent), is anyone surprised that, in a country of 10,000 or so pro athletes, gay male athletes exist? After all, the WNBA, the NBA's sister league, features several openly gay players. When the league's top draft pick, Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner, recently "came out," the media and fans said "ho-hum." But when Collins came out, he became front-page news as the first male to do so.
At one time, gay athletes like Billie Jean King and Martina Navratilova lost fans and endorsements. In Collins' case, one of the few discordant notes came from a professional football player who tweeted: "All these beautiful women in the world and guys wanna mess with other guys. SMH (shaking my head)." Four minutes later, he sent an apologetic tweet and got publicly slammed by his employer, the Miami Dolphins.
Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama praised Collins for his courage. Obama even called the athlete to offer his support.
Open arms. Not exactly how baseball greeted Robinson.
About racism in America, John O. Sullivan, the editor of the conservative magazine "National Review," once said: "White racism exists. But its social power is weak; the social power against it overwhelming." Similarly, hostility toward gays certainly exists, but its social power is growing weaker and on the decline.
Will fans, as happened during Jackie Robinson's playing days, shout out slurs with no fear of getting thrown out of the arena or getting beaten up by outraged fans?
Will Collins' teammates, as in Robinson's case, pass around a petition signed by a number of teammates, stating they refuse to play with him?
Will arenas require gay fans to sit apart from non-gay fans the way many stadiums, during Robinson's era, segregated black fans from white fans?
Will they tell gay reporters, as they did black reporters during Robinson's day, to sit in the stands, typewriter on the lap, rather than in the press booth with the other reporters?
Tolerance cuts both ways.
What happens to a player who says, "I think homosexuality is a sin," or, "Got no problem playing with or against him, but I don't approve of his lifestyle"? Or a player who asks: "What's all this business about 'bravery'? What Collins does behind closed doors is his business. Why do I need to know about it?"
In 2007, sportswriter Chris Broussard of ESPN wrote about an openly gay colleague: "I've played in several rec leagues with LZ Granderson, who is an openly gay writer at ESPN The Magazine. ... I don't shower with LZ after games like NBA teammates do, and I'll admit that if I had to, it might be a little uncomfortable at first. But if a gay player just goes about his business in the shower, showing that he has no sexual interest in his teammates and that he's not 'checking them out,' I think the awkwardness would wear off fairly quickly. LZ and I know where each other stand, and we respect each other's right to believe as he does. I know he's gay, and he knows I believe that's a sin. I know he thinks I get my moral standards from an outdated, mistranslated book, and he knows I believe he needs to change his lifestyle."
About Collins' coming out, Broussard said: "Personally, I don't believe that you can live an openly homosexual lifestyle or (engage in) openly premarital sex between heterosexuals. If you're openly living that type of lifestyle, then the Bible says you know them by their fruits, it says that's a sin. If you're openly living in unrepentant sin, whatever it may be, not just homosexuality, adultery, fornication, premarital sex between heterosexuals -- whatever it may be, I believe that's walking in open rebellion to God and to Jesus Christ. I would not characterize that person as a Christian because I do not think the Bible would characterize them as a Christian." The Washington Post wrote that ESPN stood by Broussard despite his "controversial" comments.
Want political incorrectly controversy? How about an athlete or Hollywood star "coming out" as an Iraq War-supporting, tax-cutting, ObamaCare-opposing ... conservative! With Collins coming out, the NBA has exactly one more openly gay player than it has who is openly Republican.
Dr. Ben Carson, the neurologist and ObamaCare critic, accepted an invitation to speak at Johns Hopkins' commencement. But after Carson stated his opposition to gay marriage, students and faculty protested. Carson withdrew.
Jason Collins could teach Johns Hopkins a lesson in tolerance.
I think we can go all the way back to the 1950s and find gay players in the NBA. Same for the NFL, and especially for major league baseball.
Where did that come from? . . . 4% . . . it's barely 1.5% if that. One of our local news-twits said it was 10% . . .
It's like that 90% figure of people against gun ownership . . . comes right out of their a$$. But, if you repeat it enough . . . some of it sticks.
“I think we can go all the way back to the 1950s and find gay players in the NBA. Same for the NFL, and especially for major league baseball.”
In the 1950’s they were not “gay.” They were homosexuals. The difference is: a homosexual is attracted to members of the same sex. Gay is a lifestyle choice and indicates a communist political agenda. Hence the desire of gays to coopt homosexuals into gayness by eliminating the word as “offensive.”
You can be a conservative homosexual. You can’t be a conservative gay. Gay and conservative or polar opposites. Conservative and homosexual are not necessarily so.
who gives a flip, he is a narcissistic attention seeker
“You can be a conservative homosexual. “
Yup. And that is one of the reasons yesterday I finally decided conservatism is no longer for me. I’ll just be an indy henceforth following the principles of Reagan.
Enjoy the movement you helped destroy.
Norm, if you want to make a point, at least have the guts to take on a poster’s entire comment, not pull a little tid bit out of context. That’s cowardly. And you did take Blather’s comment out of context by leaving off the last half of it.
Actually, he’s an aging, barely-competent basketball player, scoring 1.1 points per game, trying to keep the paycheck going for another season or two.
No need to know or hear about a person’s sex life...keep it in the closet. This is PRIVATE and not NEWS.
“No need to know or hear about a persons sex life...keep it in the closet. This is PRIVATE and not NEWS.”
This is exactly my opinion on this kind of news story—or of anyone who feels like they have to broadcast information on their sexual activities or preferences. Too much information!!!
Words mean things. Have the guts to admit it.
If you want to defend his clear and in context statement, then be my guest. It’s the reason that the movement flounders. People ignoring basic principles as you have done in post after post.
When you show me where in any conservative text, any speech or essay that a father or historical icon of conservative thought has accepted homosexuality as conservative, show me. Until then, try not to be part of the problem.
I am sick and tired of this gay shyte and it is sickening too. It was better when they were in the closet doing what they do far way from everyone else
Fresh from Pookies Toons
Lesbians generally get a break. after all, I'm sure I'm not the only lesbian-trapped-in-a-man's-body here on FR!
If Jackie Robinson had waited until he was a 36 yr old free agent to tell the world he was Black, then Jason would be “just like him”.....
Yes, the poofter isth thoo brave!
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