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Jason Collins is A Gay!

Discussion in 'Colosseum' started by Gaear, Apr 29, 2013.

  1. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

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    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-29/jason-collins-gay-proud-and-historic.html

    I'm not sure I understand these maneuvers. I guess I get the whole no shame thing, and the desire to portray a sexual orientation/lifestyle/what-have-you as not being fringe, but it all still smacks a bit of ... grandstanding? Unnecessary gravity? We aren't supposed to care about being gay or un-gay, and if no one cares about being gay or un-gay, why should we ... care? It almost seems like a message directed at the haters, but what's the point in that? You're not likely to change the mind of someone with irrational fears.

    It reminds me of when Michael declared bankruptcy on The Office. ;)

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2015
  2. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    Well, because at least in the US, no athlete in one of the major sports has ever come out while he was still actively playing? In that sense it's historic.

    (And what's up with "A Gay"? Why not just say "Gay"?)
     
  3. joacqin

    joacqin Confused Jerk Veteran

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    It is a big deal when it comes to professional sports. It is one of the last pure hetero normative bastions. I am sure it means a lot to all the gay athletes still in the closet.
     
  4. The Great Snook Gems: 31/31
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    I'd care more if he was any good. Have Lebron come out as gay. Now that would be something.
     
  5. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    ^Well, except for the fact that LeBron is married to a woman. I'd say the odds are pretty good that he isn't gay.

    That said, I have to wonder if Collins will even play in the NBA next year. The guy is 34, and he was a backup the past couple of years anyway. He's at the end of his career, and would certainly be seen as expendable. While I applaud his bravery in coming out, it would be nice if he actually played at least one year as openly gay.
     
  6. Silvery

    Silvery I won't pretend to be your friend coz I'm just not ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran

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    Given the percentage of gay people in the world then there's bound to be a good third of athletes in the "last pure hetero normative bastion" (that is one of the funniest things I've ever read!).

    TGS, why does it matter if he's good or not? It's just a sport. If a mechanic came out as being gay would anyone care how fast he could change brake pads?

    I don't even understand why this is news
     
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  7. Splunge

    Splunge Bhaal’s financial advisor Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Because there's a huge difference between not "not supposed to care" and actually, y'know, caring. And unfortunately a lot of people fall into the latter category. So one way to make it more acceptable is to show that it in fact occurs.
     
  8. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

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    I guess I can see how it would be technically 'historic' if it never happened before (I was not really aware of that), but the overall significance is still lost on me. If gay = like everybody else, why does it need to be celebrated somehow? (Seems like saying "Regular person declares his sexuality!") Do pro sports teams still discriminate against homosexuals in the modern era?
     
  9. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    How could we know? Since there's never been an openy gay pro athlete in a major sport before this, there is no historic record to examine to determine how they were treated. There have certainly been dozens of pro athletes who have come out over the years, but prior to Collins, all of them did so after they retired.

    A third? I have heard a bunch of different figures for the percentage of gay people in the world, but 1/3 would be by far the highest. I'd say impossibly high. I don't have a study to back this up, but just observation tells me that it is extremely improbable that one out of every three people are gay.
     
  10. Silvery

    Silvery I won't pretend to be your friend coz I'm just not ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran

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    Ah whatever the figure is. It was more just to make a point. I forgot that EVERYTHING that is ever mentioned on here has to be completely accurate. That's why we're all experts in double think :lol:
     
  11. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

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    True, but I would think there is a difference between public perception and being inside an organization. I think most people know to some degree about the personal lives of their immediate coworkers. So e.g., in Collins' case, I assume he either has or has had a boyfriend at some point. Did no one within the organization (either administration or teammates) ever know this, and assuming they did and they cared, was he likely to be mistreated for it? I guess that would primarily be a question for sports insiders.
     
  12. The Great Snook Gems: 31/31
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    I'm convinced that there are no way near as many gay people as some would like us to believe.

    Why does it matter if he is good or not? Because people are making this in to a big deal and having it basically be a nobody is a little on the underwhelming side. As a for instance, if Obama said he was gay and divorcing Michelle for Barney Frank that would be news. If my mechanic does the same thing, only a few people would really care (and yes, he is pretty fast with a brake pad).

    It is supposedly news as male athletes are supposed to be the current day gladiators and the ultimate example of what a man is supposed to be (none of that is my opinion). To find an athlete who is gay is supposed to somehow legitimize homosexuality in the eyes of some.

    This will get some news traction, but until someone who is really good at sports and in the prime of their ability comes out of the closet I don't think many people will care.
     
  13. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Even if it is a big name star openly admitting he is gay, I don't think it will be important for more than a day or two. Maybe a week if it is Lebron, Tiger, Brady or MJ. "Gay" is pretty much accepted these days, so NOT newsworthy in my book. Especially when it is ...what's his name again? I already forgot....;)
     
  14. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    The very cynical side of me says he came out now so that if he doesn't get a contract next year, he can blame it on coming out (as opposed to, say, being old and already being the 12th guy on the team). I just don't know. He's a bright guy (went to Stanford) and apparently keeps himself in shape, so I suspect that if he does play next year, it should (hopefully) be a complete non-issue. He will certainly be able to deal with any nonsense comments his teammates and opposing players/fans might say.
     
  15. Arkite

    Arkite Crash or crash through Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    This is how the story broke over here:

    NBA centre Jason Collins becomes the first high-profile American athlete to reveal that he is gay.

    "I didn't set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I'm happy to start the conversation.

    "I wish I wasn't the kid in the classroom raising his hand and saying, 'I'm different.' If I had my way, someone else would have already done this.

    "Nobody has, which is why I'm raising my hand."

    The first high-profile Australian athlete to come out was Ian Roberts, who revealed he was gay in 1995.
     
  16. Barmy Army

    Barmy Army Simple mind, simple pleasures... Adored Veteran

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    'A gay'? really?
     
  17. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

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    Relax Barmy, you need a lesson in tongue-in-cheek detection. I can add a smiley if it would make you feel less scared. :p
     
  18. Death Rabbit

    Death Rabbit Straight, no chaser Adored Veteran Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    I think I'm with Snook on this one (hey, it's not politics).

    The reason it's a big deal whether the player is any good or not is part of the reason gay players are looked down on in the first place – it's simply assumed, right or wrong, that a gay player is less of a man than a straight player, and therefore not an ideal athlete. If a mediocre player comes out as gay this assumption is more or less confirmed. But if a top-tier athlete comes out - an American icon and paragon of athleticism, as most star athletes tend to be – then the argument that being gay makes you less of a man falls apart. As do arguments that gay players negatively impact the team dynamic (provided the team has a winning record that the player in question contributed to, of course).

    For the record, the number of gay men and women in the general populace is estimated to be between 2-3%. I don't think it's safe to assume that 2-3% of professional athletes are gay, though. Due to the cultural barriers inherent, I imagine most gay athletes avoid professional sports altogether, if for no other reason than not to get harassed, or believe they'll be prevented from advancement due to their orientation when it's discovered (which, let's be honest, is pretty much true). The few who risk it stay in the closet for the most part. So the number of gay professional athletes is likely extremely small. But even when a no-name athlete comes out, it's still significant and important culturally. It just won't have much impact on the broader culture or the hyper-masculine world of professional sports. A dude on a Wheaties box would be a different story.

    As a non-American example: Gareth Thomas is a superstar in the world of professional rugby, is he not? He came out in 2009, I believe. I know nothing about the culture surrounding rugby or how his coming out was received, but it seems relevant to the discussion.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2013
  19. Barmy Army

    Barmy Army Simple mind, simple pleasures... Adored Veteran

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    Just seemed that a strange turn of phrase.

    Nobody gave a *poopie*. Homosexuality has long stopped being a big deal in the UK. Noone really cares. Obviously you have a group of small-minded idiots still, but those same people are usually also racist, sexist and hold a really crap job. In other words, they're mentally inadequate and generally ignored.

    On the whole though, there was a complete lack of any *ice cream pops* given when Gaz Thomas came out. Some people a bit surprised because he's such a big, butch *lumberjack*, but that's all.


    [Edit: Because the censor is there for a reason /dmc]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2013
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  20. Death Rabbit

    Death Rabbit Straight, no chaser Adored Veteran Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Yeah. Well, I think we'll get there eventually. It's like people are saying with all of the states who are ratifying gay marriage... this month, they released the movie 42, about Jackie Robinson and why it was such a big deal to have a black player on a baseball team 50 years ago. 50 years from now, they'll be releasing movies about the first gay couples to get married and young people then will ask "Dad, why was that ever a big deal to anyone?"

    Incidents like the one highlighted in this thread help drive the conversation forward.
     
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