I thought I had finished posting on the blog for the day, but as a native of Green Bay, Wisconsin, when I saw this story from Outsports about a legendary former Green Bay Packers player speaking out against anti-LGBT bigotry I couldn’t resist logging back on and putting something up. (I guess I had more hometown pride than I thought…) Cyd Zeigler, Jr. set out to interview NFL stars about homophobia in sports. Here’s what four-time Pro Bowl running back and Green Bay’s all-time leading rusher Ahman Green had to say:
“In our sport, to be honest, I think it would be hard for any guy to come out while he’s playing. And that’s not a happy thing to say. The gay community is just like everybody else, but they’re treated differently. It’s a double standard. If a guy was gay, he wouldn’t come out while he was playing. He knows the possibility of the scrutiny he might face from the locker room, which would be unfair. I am very open-minded. It is what it is. People are born that way. You can’t control it. Just like you’re white, I’m black. But a lot of people don’t think my way. I wish they did, because then there wouldn’t be guys who wanted to stay hidden. . .
“Social change has been coming around for the last 20 to 30 years. I was born in 1977. A lot has changed since 1977 from issues with sports, with government, with social issues like this. I’m a big advocate of people, let them live. They’re just like us. They want to live. They want to have a family. And to give somebody a headache just because that’s the way they live, that’s unfair just like it was back in the 60s with white and black issues. Same type of stuff. . .
Green also revealed that he’s recently learned that he has a gay brother and a lesbian half-sister. His only problem with that? That they waited so long to tell him.
“It’s no problem for me. If anything, I’ve got your back. For one, you’re my family. Number two, that’s who you are.”
Good on you, Ahman. Here’s hoping more professional athletes, particularly football players, follow your example.