Monday, February 10, 2014

Michael Sam Comes Out

Football player Michael Sam has made headlines, smack during the headline making 2014 Winter Olympics, by coming out. The reason being he will become the first active openly gay male athlete in one of the "Big Four" American sports (NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB). Of course, every league has many gay players in it, but most pretend to be straight during their careers because its easier. But it shouldn't have to be that way, players like Sam should be able to be themselves the way they were born to be, and he is helping to create that culture. He will enter the draft in the Spring, coming off a season where he was a consensus All-American, and first team All-SEC...which is the most popular and toughest conference in College Football.

Robbie Rogers of Major League Soccer (MLS) is out, though well it is growing more popular, MLS isn't quite on the level of the "Big Four" yet, save for some places like the Pacific Northwest.

Besides the positive reaction, one other reaction has been, "well, who cares? Why do I have to know, why not just keep it quiet whether you like men or women?" Well, first of all, his teammates and coaches at Missouri knew. Some in the media had heard, but weren't sure. He wasn't hiding it from them, and it would've eventually come out to the public. By coming out before the draft, the media attention will die down by the time the NFL season begins. If he didn't come out now, someone in the media would have mentioned it possibly when the NFL season starts. This was the best way.

It also tells people, especially young male athletes, that there are other gay male athletes out there. Having a role model who is like them is the best way to help a young person love themselves for who they are. I have to give props to ESPN for their positive coverage of the story, and straightforward interview with Michael. The NFL is ready. If the 5th ranked College Football team in the country had nothing but love for him, then his NFL team should be mature enough to as well.

No comments:

Post a Comment