Friday, April 12, 2013

NHL, NFL Preparing for Openly Gay Athletes

Gay athletes come out at their own risk!  Fans watch sports to escape their everyday lives and don’t care what they do off the field.  But, social experimentation is not why fans care about sports. 

The National Hockey League announced a partnership with a group advocating acceptance of openly gay players on Thursday, and other big league men’s sports may be soon follow.

The group You Can Play was formed a year ago, according to its website, “to guarantee that athletes are given a fair opportunity to compete, judged by other athletes and fans alike, only by what they contribute to the sport or their team’s success.”

The NHL is the first men’s major league to sign on. The National Football League also is working with advocacy groups to ensure a smooth transition when one of its players eventually admits publicly to being gay.

NFL player Brendon Ayanbadejo has publicly advocated for gay players to admit to their sexuality. He told The New York Times that more than a handful of gay players exist in professional sports. None have admitted to their sexuality during their careers.

“I’m not going to name numbers,” Ayanbadejo said. “Several gay players in more sports than just football, and what we’re trying to facilitate is to get them together and do what they want to do, do what is right for them.”

The NFL, Major League Soccer, the National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball all have policies against discrimination based on sexual orientation.

More here

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