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Jason Collins is A Gay!

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

  1. Barmy Army

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

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    Definitely. We're stomping intolerance out slowly but surely, one piece of small-minded prejudice at a time.
     
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  2. dogsoldier Gems: 7/31
    Latest gem: Tchazar


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    He's not really a high-profile player. He's never been in danger of making an All-Star team, never played on a title team, career averages are something like 3 points and 3 rebounds a game. I think this season it was 1ppg and 1rpg.

    I wasn't surprised he was gay. I was surprised he actually played this season. I follow the Celtics with some regularity and had no idea he was on their roster earlier in the season.
     
  3. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

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

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    Actually, according to the reports, he only told his parents within the last year, and none of the members of his team knew he was gay. He has an identical twin brother who also played in the NBA for a while, who said he was "shocked" when his brother came out.

    I understand completely what you're saying, and normally I'd say your assumptions would be correct. But in this particular case, it appears that no one beyond his immediate family knew about this.

    While I agree to some extent, the mere fact that you are playing in the NBA (or the NFL, NHL, or MLB for that matter) already means you are an elite athlete. To use the current example. Only about 1% of all high school basketball players receive athletic scholarships to go to college, and only about 1% of college athletes ever make it to the pros.

    Yes, Collins comes off the bench, but the fact that he's good enough to play in the NBA already makes him a superior athlete as compared to 99.9% of the population. I'm not sure anyone beyond the superstars of the game are considered "ideal athletes". And I'm sure some people do think in the manner that you describe, but I can't help but feel they are a small minority of the fan base. I love football, but I don't look at the 3rd string tight end (no pun intended) and say, "He's not very good - he must be gay." And I don't know anyone else who does either.
     
    Gaear likes this.
  4. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

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    I tend to agree with Aldeth in terms of impressions. I'm doubtful that any pro athlete (look at minimum salaries in all major sports) can really be thought of as a scrub, even if he comes off the bench.

    In terms of real world interaction with them, my impression has always been that even the lowliest ones are at least quasi-celebrities among regular people.

    Similarly, while I acknowledge anyone who feels and says differently, I don't look at Kobe/Lebron/Dwyane and say "What a real man." I think they are great athletes and that's pretty much all. Even in darkest recesses of my subconscious, as far as I'm aware, I'm not equating athleticism with overt masculinity. Hopefully that kind of thinking fades away in the rear view mirror with high school for most people. ;)
     
  5. 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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    This is absolutely 100% true. However, we're talking about perception here, not reality. In most people's eyes, and especially most sports fans, unless you're really making the boards, you're just filler. You're just the support personnel for the LeBrons of the world. The fact that you have to be in the top 1% of the top 1% to even get into the NBA means nothing to the average sports fan if you're averaging 3 points a game. Let me put it this way – Collins was about as likely as Air Bud to make the cover of EA NBA 2K13. And unless you're getting that kind of exposure, who is even going to remember that you even made it? It's sad and unfair, but true.

    On another note - not trying to make correlation equal causation here, but - coming out put Jason Collins on the map the way his playing alone never would have. Which brings me to my next point...
    You have this backwards. What I said was, if a 3rd string tight end turns out to be gay, then you're likely to see macho idiots decide that correlation equals causation. In the inverse, it's extremely common for said macho idiots to decry an underperforming athlete or team as "a bunch of faggots," but that's clearly an expression of disappointment and not literal. Flip it, and it becomes literal, freeing up those predisposed to associate gayness with weakness to assign blame. Not everyone does this, but you're kidding yourself if you think it's only a few.

    Like it or not, homophobia and sports are tightly linked in American culture. The situation is better than it used to be, but we still have a long way to go.
     
  6. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

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

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    There's no arguing that. All but the most die-hard NBA fans had no idea who Jason Collins was before Monday.

    Not to put too much of a race angle on it, but when you add homophobia, sports, and African American culture all together, it kicks it up another notch. And it's stating the obvious, but the percentage of African Americans in sports far exceeds their proportion in the general population, and this is probably most apparent in the NBA. Most sports have African Americans over-represented, but you see a mixture of all races. In the NBA, African Americans dominate every roster.

    Now throw in that African Americans as a group tend to be more homophobic than the general population. (And yes, I know that sounds extremely racist, but this is well documented. Support for things like civil unions and gay marriage has historically been considerably lower among African Americans than any other racial group.) And on this point, I think it is somewhat important that Collins is African American.

    That's probably true as well. Just because I don't do it, and none of my friends do this, I do hang out with mostly tolerent, raional, and intelligent people. Those coming from the shallow end of the gene pool may not feel the same way.
     
  7. Déise

    Déise Both happy and miserable, without the happy part!

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    I think it's good to see. I saw a comment on another site from a guy saying that as a teenager he would have liked more examples of gay men in the public eye that he could relate to. Those at the time who were gay were all these camp, flamboyant celeb types. He said he would have found it reassuring, as a confused teenager, to see "normal" folk who just happened to be gay rather than a walking stereotype.
     
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