We started the day with wingnuts singing the same old songs about how NBA center Jason Collins is going to ogle all the men in the showers, how he’s not a real Christian, how wingnuts have 99 problems and now Jason Collins makes 100, and so forth, so we will end the day with the flip side of the coin: a compilation of people saying nice things about Jason Collins, as well as a Good Morning America interview with the man himself.
First off, here are Dan Savage, Athlete Ally founder Hudson Taylor and New York Times columnist Bill Rhoden talking to Chris Hayes about what a cultural moment it is for the NBA, and specifically for a male from one of the major professional sports, to have an openly gay player. Dan says it feels almost as big as the repeal of DADT:
Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish have joined Athlete Ally on this occasion, and Roddick said the following in a press release:
“Yesterday was an incredible day for athletes everywhere. Jason Collin’s courage and leadership in coming out reminds me of how important it is for an athlete to be able to be true to him or herself. As an Athlete Ally, I want to support every athlete to feel comfortable and confident being themselves and to make sure that all people – players and fans alike – are welcome and included in tennis.”
For her part, Ellen just wants to hug Jason Collins’ knees:
The Boston Red Sox would like for Jason Collins to come out and throw the first pitch sometime soon:
President Obama “couldn’t be prouder” of him:
And finally, here is Jason on Good Morning America this morning, with one of the best descriptions I’ve heard of what it’s like to be in the closet — “you know that the sky is blue, but you keep telling yourself that it’s red.” That is exactly it. He also talks about his revelation that he wears the number “98” on his jersey in honor of Matthew Shepard.