Monday, April 29, 2013

Jason Collins Has Opened The Door

Jason Collins wrote in an essay published today at the Sports Illustrated website and in the May 6 print edition that he is a gay man.

This is the big news in the world of sports today.

It is also playing high in the ranking of news events for general news media deciding what to cover and highlight in today's news cycle.

Why and what's the big deal in this day and age of greater acceptance of LG&Bs ?

After all there have been other athletes who have come out over the past number of years.

The difference is active pro male athletes who have come out are from other countries, those who have come out in US professional sports did so after retirement.

Today Collins did what many have been waiting for, an active player in the NFL, NHL, NBA or MLB to announce who and what they are in regards to sexuality.

Talking heads both in sports broadcasting and general news media have said this afternoon "because the (social) climate is right".

More importantly it is the right time for Jason Collins.

While Collins no doubt will receive some resistance from homophobes, the ignorant and those who really don't know their Bible, Kuran or Torah and how those books relay peace and love toward their fellow man, the outpouring this afternoon has been primarily of support and indeed praise, not just from LG&Bs which one would expect but also from the world of the hetero and the world of sports including those Collins plays with and the institution he is a part of.

The accolades will continue for several days, Oprah will now be seeking an "exclusive" interview for her not so watched cable channel, after all May sweeps are a mere couple of weeks away, and unfortunately Collins, who is the same man he was before everyone found out today, will now be seen as a gay athlete rather than just an athlete.

But then that is the price and image one must pay for being "the first".

As time goes on and more come out of the now open gay and bi male pro athlete door, the headline will last for just a news cycle or two. After which as when celebs, news reporters and anchors, and politicians first come out the pre-fix with the word gay will not be included except of course in the LGBT press and blogs.

Jason Collins came out today.

The world has not ended, the stock market did not fall and life goes on.

As I've done the past four plus years publishing Focus On the Rainbow I'll close with this.

Welcome home Jason, welcome home.
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