Wow, this is so nice to see WWE star Darren Young casually come out of the closet. Young was so nonchalant, when he came out to the TMZ reporter. This is fantastic, Darren coming out is going to make a difference I feel. It is so nice to see a handsome, masculine gay black man come out of the closet. I also think Darren Young coming out is great for the black community, there needs to be more dialogue about homosexuality.
For far too long gay black men we are silenced due to the homophobia. However, when public figures such as Darren Young continue to come out, these men challenge the perceptions of what it means to be gay. Often the image of the gay black man in pop culture is negative, about the dangerous down low brother or the effeminate drag queen. No offense to the fans of Ru Paul, and Miss Jay Alexander but it is refreshing to see a confident, masculine, gay black man come out. Masculine gay black men really shock people because these men challenge the image of the black homosexual.
Homophobic people prefer the flamboyant gay black man image because he fits into the neat stereotype and category of the perception people have of gay men. Meanwhile, the masculine gay black man shatters the negativity, and the image of the black homosexual. We need more public figures who are gay black men to come out like Darren Young!
He sounds very confident, gay, and proud and I think that’s the right way to come out. Young didn’t do no press conference, or no big magazine article he just stated very matter of fact he’s into other men. Everyone knows, the WWE is a very macho, testosterone environment.
I knew Canadian tennis star Milos Raonic didn’t have a chance to beat Rafael Nadal today but I thought he could have made it close. However, immediately Raonic was serving at 1-1 and Nadal breaks his serve and the match is over. Nadal destroyed Raonic 6-2 6-2 in a little bit over an hour. First, congratulations to Milos Raonic for becoming the first Canadian man to reach the top 10. On Monday, Raonic will be ranked tenth in the world and that’s an awesome achievement for a young player. However, Nadal illustrated today that there is a huge gap between the elite players in the top five and the rest of the top 10 or top 2o players. Raonic is in the second tier group, his game is good enough to beat most of the men on the ATP Tour but not good enough against Nadal.
The reason Nadal has dominated Raonic 4-0 in their head to head meetings is due to a few things. Raonic is slow, yes he is six foot five but his movement is awkward his footwork is terrible!
Tomas Berdych the sixth ranked player in the world is the same height as Raonic but his movement is superior. Nadal simply redirects the ball, he pushes Milos Raonic around the court. Unfortunately, for Raonic his lack of mobility is exploited by Nadal. I suggest Raonic hire a sprint coach, I am not suggesting Raonic is going to become a track and field star like Usain Bolt.
However, I feel that in order for Raonic to challenge the top five players he must improve his movement. If Raonic can improve his fitness, meaning getting physically stronger he will have more confidence on the court. Raonic is slim but he’s going to have to work even harder in the gym if he seriously wants to challenge the top four players. Right now, Raonic is not fast enough and his groundstrokes are not consistent enough. Raonic made too many silly errors today against Nadal.
Second, Raonic’s backhand is weak he runs around his poor backhand to hit forehands. Raonic needs to improve his backhand and turn it from a weakness into a weapon. The problem is Nadal is so much quicker than Raonic he exploits Raonic’s backhand and forces him into errors. Finally, I think Raonic needs to realize having a big serve is not enough to beat the top players. Raonic needs to dedicate himself to adding more variety into his game he is sadly very one dimensional. I don’t want Milos Raonic to end up like Andy Roddick he didn’t have variety in his game and he became Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer’s punching bag. The good news is Raonic is young he’s only twenty two. However, in the fall when Raonic has time, I sincerely hope that he really dedicates himself to improving his movement. If Milos Raonic can improve his movement, maybe he has a chance against the top four players.
I don’t care for football but when I heard actress Kerry Washington married a hunk Nnamdi Asomugha I had to see for myself! Wow, thank goodness for You Tube this guy is so articulate, and so handsome!! Kerry really picked a good one!
Long before Jason Collins, Robbie Rogers, Orlando Cruz, game out of the closet, Emile Griffith was an open about his bisexuality in the 1960s. Griffith was an accomplished boxer, he went to gay bars in New York City through the front door he never hid the fact he loved other men.
Robbie Rogers: The History Maker
By Matthew Breen
Robbie Rogers’s journey from closeted soccer player to LGBT role model has been as dramatic as it is inspiring.
Photography by Matthias Vriens-McGrath
On February 15 of this year, at the age of 25, Robbie Rogers made a dramatic announcement on his website: He was gay, and he was quitting soccer. The two points were not unrelated — no male American athlete in a major team sport had come out while still playing professionally (although gay-friendly Sweden set a precedent when soccer player Anton Hysén came out there in 2011). Then in May, Rogers reversed course on one of those announcements and signed to the Los Angeles Galaxy.
He was no longer a gay retired soccer player; he was a history maker — just six months after coming out to his “conservative, Catholic, close-knit” family. “Growing up, I learned that being gay was a sin,” he says when we meet at Soho House in Los Angeles. “It was not something you could be, and it wasn’t something my family would talk about much — it was obviously something that scared the shit out of me.”
It’s only been a few weeks since he had his first match as an out gay player (stepping onto the field 13 minutes before the final whistle), and it’s clear that Rogers, who grew up in Orange County, has embraced his newfound role with gusto. Having played for one of the world’s most decorated teams — England’s Leeds United — as well as for the U.S. squad at the Beijing Olympics, Rogers, now 26, is in the rare position of being able to inspire young gay athletes by his example. Being invited to attend the Nike LGBT Youth Forum in Oregon in April was a wake-up call, he says. “I left the summit thinking, Come on, step up — all these kids are so excited to make a change, you should also. God’s given you the talent to be a soccer player, to be in front of people just to show them who you are.”
Who he is, who he was, and how he got from one to the other is the subject of our conversation as Rogers opens up in a candid, thoughtful interview that reflects the emotional distance he’s travelled since hitting “send” a mere five months earlier.
Out: You told one reporter you felt different around age 10, like a part of you knew.
Robbie Rogers: I felt different for a long time, but when I was 14 and going to high school, I was like, Oh, OK. This is what’s going on: I’m gay. And then it was, I’m good at soccer as well… there are no gay soccer players.
Did you keep them separate in your head?
RR: I just repressed being a gay male, as awful as that sounds. I look back now and think, Gosh, that’s sad. To think there are other kids [feeling] like that is really scary, but I just felt that soccer was so important in my life that I was willing to do it.
There must have been accomplishments that you couldn’t enjoy because you were closeted.
RR: I’d turned into a professional player — something I’d wanted my whole life — and wasn’t able to soak it in because I shut down emotionally and didn’t get to feel all of the emotions I would have as a normal person who’s happy with himself. Winning the MLS [Major League Soccer] cup, or being on the All-Star team, or going to the Olympics — those should be things you can be happy and excited about, but you’re still hiding inside yourself and you’re not comfortable in your own skin. Or moving to England and signing with Leeds, or even stuff like my sister getting married, or little birthday parties.
Playing soccer in the U.K. is very different from the U.S., right?
RR: Yeah. Imagine an American football game, but on steroids. People live and die for soccer; they breathe it. It’s insane. The club you grow up supporting, that’s the club you will do anything for — you bleed whatever colors that team is. People will say anything to the opposing team to justify… to hopefully get an edge. The fans will call you anything, say anything about your parents or whatever.
So I imagine you heard a lot of antigay–
RR: Yeah, you’d hear the most ridiculous things from kids. And the crazy part is these people aren’t homophobic, a lot of them aren’t racist. But they get into this packed stadium where they’re just trying to win and destroy people — manners and humanity are just gone.
It’s got to get into your head, thinking about coming out.
RR: The biggest thing for me was being in the locker room, again, with a group of guys. Because those are the guys you’re with every day; they become like brothers, guys that you fight and train with every day. I didn’t want to be in a situation where I was a total outcast, where people would be walking on eggshells around me, talking behind my back. They haven’t, but that possibility scared the shit out of me. It was like, I don’t want it to be like that, I don’t want to live my life that way.
Talking about the locker room, I imagine there’s talk about women and sex there. How did you feel when that happened?
RR: It was awkward. Before I became true to myself I dated girls. I very much acted the part as a straight footballer, which is pretty sad, but I felt like I had to mask that side of me. Going to Leeds was the best thing that could have happened because I was there by myself; I realized I wasn’t happy and hadn’t been happy in a long time. I didn’t want to be one of those people who are always unhappy and don’t try to change anything. I thought, Now that you’re 25, make a change because you have the power to do it. Which was obviously the best thing ever for me, because I’m actually happy.
You’ve said that before coming out you hadn’t hooked up with any guys. Have you made up for lost time?
RR: How do I answer this? I’m very conservative, but I have met some good people that I’ve hung out with. In London I dated a guy for a few months. He’s still one of my good friends, but it’s been tough to meet people in West Hollywood.
If someone wants to ask you out, what’s your advice on how to make a good impression?
RR: It bothers me when someone tries to hook me up with a friend — “You’re gay, my friend’s gay, you’re gonna love each other.” It’s like, OK, probably not. It has to happen in an organic way, where someone introduces himself and is genuine and doesn’t want to talk about soccer straight out the gate. When I started dating this guy in London, I just went up to him. I’m sure I’ll meet someone in a random place– the grocery store or wherever.
You’ve said that you wanted to be a footballer and not a spokesperson. Do you still feel that way?
RR: No, the exact opposite. I want to help people, especially kids who felt the same way I did; it makes me sick to remember the way I felt and to think that…they don’t have a choice of who they are and they feel the same way I used to feel. Now I have this platform that hopefully I can use to reach people in a positive way. This is a learning process for me, but I don’t want to give advice. I’ve just come to terms with myself, so who am I to be giving advice? I love to share my story with these kids and hang out with kids or people or grown men who are struggling, and I’m very happy that God’s given me the courage to try to help in that way.
For many people, being out is a process from acceptance to pride — it can take a while. That doesn’t seem to be the case with you.
RR: Sometimes I’ll talk to people and they’ll be like, “You must still be trying to get used to things; trying to figure things out,” and I’m like, “I don’t know, I feel quite comfortable.” Being gay doesn’t define me but it is a big part of me, and I have amazing friends that are gay men — straight friends as well, but these guys are such courageous and creative and loving people that it’s made it easier to be, like, “Of course I’m happy with who I am.” I got back from London and New York a few months back and I had dinner with my family, a simple barbeque in our house in Huntington, sitting around the table with my dog and everyone, and it was like, This is what life is like, this is what hanging out with your family is supposed to feel like. How nuts is it that for 25 years I didn’t feel that way, and then it’s, like, Gosh, Robbie, what took you so long?”
Since this is a gay blog, I am only focusing on the hot pics of the male athletes from EPSN’s body issue. I think it is great that ESPN is celebrating the male body. John Wall, John Isner, and Matt Harvey are hot! For far too long, the male body has been concealed, it great that ESPN is showing the world the glorious male form. It is about time ESPN realize, there is a huge audience of gay male sports fans we want to see male athletes nude too! Sports Illustrated has their swim suit issue of half naked women, glad ESPN Magazine got it right returning the favour.
Robbie Rogers is the first openly gay male athlete competing in a team sport in the twenty first century in North America. Glen Burke, a former Major League Baseball player did compete as an openly gay man back in the 1980s. However, back in the 1980s society and the media were not accepting of homosexuality. Robbie Rogers competed with the LA Galaxy during their game with the Seattle Sounders and won 4-0. The crowd gave Rogers a standing ovation and he competed for thirteen minutes. Rogers still needs to get match fit because he hasn’t competed in professional soccer since December 8th 2012. This is very encouraging and exciting to see a young gay man be proud and brave competing in a professional team sport. Hopefully, more gay male athletes will have the courage to come out of the closet like Robbie Rogers.
Football Stud Brendon Ayanbadejo Writes Article Telling NFL To Provide Support So First Openly Gay Athlete Can Come Out!!
Ex-Raven Brendon Ayanbadejo continues to fight for same-sex marriage rights in the US.
APR 22, 2013 2:31 PM ET
Brendon Ayanbadejo is a 10-year NFL veteran who last played with the Super Bowl XLVII champion Baltimore Ravens and is a staunch supporter of same-sex marriage rights. In August 2012, Maryland state delegate Emmett Burns Jr. wrote an open letter to Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti requesting Ayanbadejo cease and desist all public support of marriage equality after Ayanbadejo donated Ravens tickets to help fundraise for marriage equality in Maryland. A law allowing same-sex marriages in the state eventually passed in late 2012 and took effect Jan. 1.
While the equality treadmill under most of our feet is moving at a high rate of speed, I would imagine this journey is not traveling fast enough for many Americans whose lives are directly impacted by the possibility of change.
Consider tennis hall of famer Billie Jean King, who was outed in 1981 when her relationship with another woman became public, and Greg Louganis, the four-time Olympic gold medal-winning American diver, who came out some seven years after King.
With more than 55 years combined of public scrutiny of their sexuality, the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which restricts some federal marriage benefits to only opposite-sex couples, and Prop 8, California’s state law restricting same-sex marriage can’t come soon enough for these two American heroes and California residents who have forever shaped the face of their respective sports.
Yet, we still have such a long journey ahead of us. Draconian policies such as “don’t ask, don’t tell” are a thing of the past, and with the quickly approaching U.S. Supreme Court rulings on the repeal of DOMA and Prop 8 in June, it appears as if we are on the precipice of a more progressive and accepting America.
It is quite hard to fathom that, in two years, we have nearly doubled the amount of states that have legalized marriage equality. In this time, New York, Maryland, Maine and Washington have approved same-sex marriage, bringing the total number of states that allow it to nine, as well as the District of Columbia.
Equal marriage rights are on the radar for Illinois, Delaware, Rhode Island and nine other states by the end of 2014. A March 2013 FOX News poll on same-sex marriage shows that 49 percent of Americans believe in same-sex marriage while 46 percent are in opposition. Support is up 32 percent from 2003.
From the opening kickoff to the Super Bowl, the best NFL action is on FOX. See the full NFL on FOX schedule.
While LGBTQ Americans can bravely and proudly serve our country in battle and even die protecting our freedom overseas, it is still perfectly legal in 29 states, to fire someone because he or she is a part of the LGBTQ community.
LGBTQ Americans do not, under DOMA, currently have any federal rights. There are so many things wrong with this picture. And, as many of us openly support and fight for equal rights in this community, we are also left asking ourselves questions about why many who identify as LGBT or Q are still so hesitant to join the fight.
Brittney Griner came out on Thursday, saying people should “just be who you are.” But being who you are in the four major professional sports isn’t accepted.
When will a male athlete come out in the NFL, NBA, MLB, or NHL?
Even as it appears American pop culture is ready to accept a gay male athlete, the stratified sporting culture might not be quite as keen on the idea of our favorite NFL player scoring touchdowns on Sundays and celebrating in Chelsea (NYC) or Hillcrest (San Diego) on Sunday nights with his boys after a hard-fought victory.
I certainly wouldn’t have a problem with it.
Corporate America doesn’t, either.
It’s time to plan work and family weddings as the NFL releases the dates and times for this year’s games.
Corporate America is frothing at the mouth, waiting for a gay superstar to take the sporting culture by the reins. Companies such as Levi’s, American Airlines, Google, and Starbucks are huge money makers, but also morality moguls in corporate America, having been rated in the top LGBTQ friendly corporations.
And just like the infamous “Bo knows” marketing campaign by Nike, I could also see a sneaker and apparel giant backing a superstar athlete with a “gay is great” campaign.
Make no mistake, the LGBTQ community’s buying power is something corporate America is keeping its eye on. The overall spending power of this growing demographic is projected to be well over $2 trillion in 2013, by some estimations.
I personally have stopped patronizing all retailers that are not LGBTQ friendly. Not only are these corporations losing out on LGBTQ dollars, but also straight dollars from family and friends of the LGBTQ community.
The most important company yet to weigh in on the issue of gays in sports is the NFL itself.
The NFL is the most popular and most-watched sport in the U.S., capturing some 59 percent of the entire U.S. population as viewers. With 1,696 players on its opening day rosters, the NFL is also the largest professional sports league in North America.
The NHL has 690 players; the NBA has 450 players; and MLB has 750 players total on its 25-man rosters, for a total of 1,890 professional athletes.
The lowest estimations say that about three percent of the population at large is gay. If you extrapolate that number across these 3,586 pro athletes, that would equate to 107 or 108 professional gay athletes, with 50 or 51 of them in the NFL.
Yet to this day we still have not heard of an athlete coming out during his playing career in any of our four professional sports. The NHL has a leg up on the other three leagues because of its alliance with the “You Can Play Foundation” that supports LGBTQ athletes.
The other three leagues have a faint footprint, or none at all, in supporting or aligning with a LGBTQ organization.
What are they waiting for?
If we hope to close one of the last closets in America, I would call upon the NFL to be proactive and align with an LGBTQ organization, something that it has not done publicly yet.
When the NFL does take such action, maybe players will be more at liberty to feel not only that they can be themselves at the workplace, but also that their employer has their best interest at heart and not just the bottom line. I would even argue that profits would increase if there were a gay player on the roster. At the end of the day, I have played with several gay athletes in my tenure with the NFL. I just didn’t know it!