It’s coming, folks. That topic which has been so elusive in the sports world is finally making its way to the forefront of round table discussions and bar conversations alike. And it very well could be the begining of a revolution — or civil war — the likes of which we have not seen in sports. Now, I’ve heard all the arguements that acceptance of gays in the locker room is as unattainable as having the BCS make sense. For generations, we have been taught by our elders that homosexuality is abnormal, evil even; gay men and women are looked upon as diseased. That feeling of contempt has bled into all aspects of life: education, military, and yes, sports. Fear and dislike have become the natural stigmas associated with gays, men especially.
So when you attempt to put gay men in the most manly of past-times – sports – it’s only natural that most people would have a huge problem. Straight men don’t want to have to second-guess their fellow teammates; they don’t want to have to worry about which of the other guys in the locker room is going to look at him funny. It’s completely understandable: straight men simply don’t want to be hit on by another man, especially not in a room where they change in front of each other. So, homosexuality can NOT be allowed in athletics. After all, all gay men love to make all straight men uncomfortable, right?
If you agreed with that last statement, let me apologize. I was not aware that Neanderthals still existed, let alone could read.
The truth of the matter is, homosexuality and sports can coexist. It doesn’t have to be a big fanfare. Here’s a secret 99% of gay men keep to themselves: we don’t want to be noticed. We don’t want to be probed about who we are or what we do when we go home. We want to be able to tell the world we’re gay, and move on. It’s not about making a scene; it’s simply about being accepted.
Let me stop you all, before you expect me to tell you how the situation can be fixed, how gay men can be seamlessly incorporated into organized sports. I do not have that answer. I do not know what it’s going to take, or who in the NBA, NFL, MLB, or NHL will finally step up and say “I’m gay.” What I do know is that it will take more than one man saying it to make it ok. Homosexuality will be viewed as a problem in sports for some time to come. In all honesty, by the time that gay athletes don’t get a SINGLE dirty look, the Browns will have won 3 Super Bowls, college football will have a playoff system, and Brian Wilson will have shaved. It will be a while before this issue is no longer an issue; yet it is finally being talked about, even if those conversations are whispered. The begining of a new era in sports is here, ladies and gentlemen.
Hail to the Revolution.