Indianapolis Colts Coach Tony Dungy Honored by Anti-Gay Group


Indianapolis Colts coach Tony Dungy is being honored at a fundraiser for The Indiana Family Institute, the state’s most fervently anti-gay group, with close ties to James Dobson’s Focus on the Family.

Given the photograph on the invite here, with Dungy pictured in his coaching uniform, I wonder if the Colts and NFL know they’re implicitly endorsing this organization?

One more reason to root for the Bears in Superbowl XLI!

More on the IFI at Bilerico


  1. Brian says

    Dungy is a religious man, obviously. He is also entitled to support any cause he likes as a private individual. But when the IFI advertises the event with a picture of Dungy in his sideline Colts regalia, it serves as an endorsement of the IFI by the Colts, including the administration and the individual members of the team.

    The IFI (and the national organization to which it is linked) is a terribly divisive and offensive organization to a lot of people, not just gays. What a monumentally stupid PR move. Write in, give them a chance to fix it, and (if necessary) root for the Bears.

    Interesting that a man who so recently experienced a groundswell of popular sympathy after the tragic suicide of his son should so quickly jettison that support with such a squalid public endorsement. Reminds me of GWB in that way, and we all know how popular HE is just now. Just sayin.

  2. Tyler says

    Now, they, Glaad, will be going to go after him as well. Are gay men and women so easily offened and need validation, that they just can’t stomach the idea that the world does not revolve around gay rights? maybe, trying to blend in and not forcing and looking under every rock for a bigot would be a better route to equality.

    And, since when did the “groundswell” involve the lbgt crowd? Most would have no idea who this guy even is.

  3. rudy says

    His son who committed suicide was invariably described as “sensitive” and “personable”. The son was reportedly every mother’s favorite among his friends. The son was raised in a very strict overtly religious home. He was only eighteen and struggling with unidentified “problems”. It sounds like too many I knew when young, a few (thankfully few) who committed suicide because they could not reconcile their sexual orientation with their father’s representation as the ultimate outwardly successful straight man. Suicides are unbelievably painful for those that remain. It appears that his son’s death has only reinforced the father’s religiousity of intolerance.

  4. ricardo says

    a hard name to carry….and panties in a bunch with very little follow through as one avoids any of these cold calls that could open up something that isn’t such a stick figure city moment. yet, many social places — are bars social?,? hardly — triggering conversation could be blasphemous to one’s compact reflection, hence, dungy albeit fecal like many things in this culture today — who cares, as one can kee kee and tee hee to the yawn of the chorus….wondering, if a bigot hunt is like a witch hunt and nothing really exists from coast to coast nor ear to ear.

    rights or equality are presumably just as make-believe as the culture in which they’re founded.

  5. anon says

    Ricardo: are you emulating spam or something?

    He was invited in order to bring publicity to the group and will no doubt get paid for the appearance, which is probably the main reason he is doing it. It’s all publicity and money, nothing to worry about.

  6. DC8STRETCH says

    James Dobson…> Tony Dungy…> Peyton Manning…> Kenny Chesney….> kind of a six degrees of Mike Jones if you ask me.

  7. Oscar says

    Come on. Of course he and the NFL know about this sponsorship. He is as homophobic as all the black christians are, and the NFL ?, come on, grow up. You don’t hear him or the NFL complainig about the photo or the endorsement, do you?.

  8. Stephen says

    by TYLER:
    “Are gay men and women so easily offened and need validation, that they just can’t stomach the idea that the world does not revolve around gay rights? maybe, trying to blend in and not forcing and looking under every rock for a bigot would be a better route to equality.”

    Well said, Tyler.

    There will not come a time when everyone agrees on “gay” rights. Millions of people tie their beliefs to their faith. That is only one facet of the freedom of opinion, (religious or otherwise) that we have in this country.

  9. Oscar says

    Dear Stephen,
    Grow up. Write or speak against blacks are one is crucified in the public opibnion. Isn’t that also part of what you call “freedom of opinion”. You are so naive or so sly or both.

  10. mark m says

    “maybe, trying to blend in and not forcing and looking under every rock for a bigot would be a better route to equality.”

    Tyler, are you gay? If so, I’d like to hear what qualifies as bigotry in your eyes. Every time there is a story on Towleroad about anti gay groups or individuals, there is a small but vocal group objecting.

    Basically, it’s ‘shut up you whiny fags.’ I would like to think that this is the result of bigoted heteros who troll these web sites to keep up with what the liberal gays are carrying on about.

    However, the more plausible and unsettling reality is that many are homosexuals who are so disconnected with (what they perceive as) Gay Culture, that they will look for any opportunity to distance themselves — even when the very people who have set themselves against all gays everywhere rally support and find common ground in their shared hate and intolerance.

    Tyler, if you are indeed gay, what would spark protest in you, if anything at all?

  11. MW says

    “He is as homophobic as all the black christians are.”

    When I think of Christian homophobes, I think of James Dobson, Ted Haggard, Fred Phelps, Justice Scalia, and the current Pope, who are all white.

    What is it about this site that brings out the racists who seem to think blacks are more homophobic than whites?

  12. James says


    Are you basing your ideas on facts, or are you just making assumptions?


    “He is as homophobic as all the black christians are…”

    Cornel West, Coretta Scott King, Julian Bond. All black. All Christian. None of them are anti-gay. Now if you want to have a conversation about homophobia in the black community, let’s do it. But if you just want to talk a bunch silly noise, then you will be by yourself.


  13. Stephen says

    Your comments regarding this topic are without merit. How can you make such a statement and broadswipe every black Christian as a homophobe? It’s so off-base, it doesn’t warrant further discussion.

    As for telling me to “grow up”, I assure you I am a mature adult who has been involved in social issues for several years.

    I believe that the name-calling and vocal bashing of people with different opinions
    of the majority of responders on this blogsite is only a small percentage of the gay and lesbians population. Where does it stop? When is something like Tony Dungy’s being honered by IFI going to viewed simply as, “He’s a member of the unconverted, we cannot win him to our side” philosophy and let it be. No one cause or issue (gay, environmental, taxes, gun control, etc.) is going to “convert” 100% of the people. Why not focus energies where they may stand a much better chance of making a difference?

  14. rjp3 says

    The not to bright man’s son KILLED HIMSELF because he was gay – and the HATRED this man expressed and maybe the hatred spread by his church leaders.

    Religion and a religious man drove a gay man to suicide.

    Now this shit can’t accept that his son was really gay. So he blames gay society for “confusing” and “leading astray” his son. For causing his son to “go down the wrong path that he and the church leaders tried to save him from”

    But the gays got him.

    So he will use his gay son’s death to mobilize mass religious based hatred for gays.

    And the VATICAN sponsors Focus on The Family gets to promote hatred and acceptance of vatican hate rules. Hate rules that when played correctly keep them in power.

    Dungy is a stupid man who the powerful are exploiting using his dead son for him to preach anti-gay propoganda.

  15. susan says

    RJP3 –

    What on Earth are you talking about??? From all published reports, Mr. Dungy’s son’s taking his own life was a tragic end to a lifelong struggle with mental illness (bi-polar/manic depressive) – don’t assume sensitive = gay. As a matter of fact, it’s best you don’t assume ANYTHING about it without doing some research – and setting your own bias and ignorance aside.

    As someone posted earlier, judging how the invite slapped a stock picture of him on the side, i seriously doubt Mr. Dungy knows of the details of the IFI – he’s readying his team for the SUPERBOWL this weekend, for goodness sakes! More than likely, someone at the Colts’ front office called his office and asked if had that date available, they played phonetag for a few days, etc., and someone else made the decision. And note that the invite says they’re “honoring” Tony Dungy – it doesn’t say he’ll be there. Ticketholders shouldn’t be surprised if someone from the front office shows up in his place; happens all of the time.

    I personally do not know what Mr. Dungy’s opinion on homosexuality is, but there needs to be some perspective, here, and there’s no need to jump to the inflammatory – within five posts, and for no apparent reason, this comment thread got really racial and really ugly.

    The race-hate on this board is becoming unbearable.

  16. peterparker says

    Susan…the race hate on this board is becoming unbearable? I’m confused as to why you would make such a comment…there is one racist comment that I see in the responses to this story…and granted, that’s one racist comment too many…but there were three or four other posters who jumped in and admonished the person who wrote the racist post…perhaps i haven’t seen the posts you’ve seen, but the race hate doesn’t seem overwhelming to me.

  17. So Left I'm Right says

    There are clearly not enough facts here. I did not know the rumors about Tony Dungy’s “sensitive” son, but clearly that’s not enough to go on, especially with the possible bi-polar issue. The bottom line is that this event is in late March, well after the Super Bowl, so he’s either committed to it or not. Does he know what the organization stands for? I don’t know. Would he continue to be involved if he did know? I don’t know. Does the NFL have any business letting anyone in uniform be involved with a hate group? Absolutely not! They don’t ever allow ANYTHING with a logo on it to appear for anything, for profit or not for profit without “express written consent” or the equivalent. So that is one thing to think about here.

    I am a sports fan, and I’m gay. I’m a Bears fan by default this year, and I hate Payton Manning for no particular reason. No amount of nonsense could make me change my Super Bowl stance at this point, so I will end with a hearty “GO BEARS”!

  18. soulbrotha says

    A gentle reminder to all of Oscar’s comments about footballer Joey Porter in a previous post:
    “A nigger will always a nigger be. No matter how many bucks do they make, the nigger in them will always come out.”

    He believes that he knows the Black community because he “lived with a Black man for seven(?) years”. His words, not mine.

    So just wait. In time he will call someone nigger again and hopefully Andy will ban his ass permanently.

  19. rjp3 says

    Little Susie Sue (Susan) …

    NOTHING in my post is AT ALL mentions race at all … so please keep on topic if addressing a post to me.

    Well dear you and I do not know the boy wasnt gay … and the rumors are that he was. With those rumors out there Mr Dungy is an asshole to show up at an anti-gay event.

    Even without the sympathy inducing dead son this man is an asshole for associating himself with them. Oh it was the front office … he knows nothing about it. RIGHT!

  20. RJP3 says

    “He is as homophobic as all the black christians are.”

    Well I am sure he is as homophobic as the worst black homophobic christians are … and black homophobic christians are such a ugly human condition. Such a lesson for all humans. Like germans who followed the Nazi party. Black Americans today so close to the civil rights era and the current day bigotry… for blacks to be anti-gay, is just one example of how ugly HUMAN – not black – HUMAN nature is.

    THIS SUNDAY history will take place. A black coach will win the Superbowl for the first time! Lets PRAY it is not Tony Dungy … but then I dont know much about the other man. BUT GO BEARS … Manning is a whiney prick.

  21. James says


    So because there is a rumor about Dungy’s son, you decide it must be true? If you just dogged out Dungy for speaking to the group, then you would be on solid ground. But your rantings about his son’s sexuality prove how silly you are.


  22. dcguy says

    From what I’ve read, it’s groups like IFI that probably played a role in his son’s decision to take his own life. The same thing happened here in DC years ago with Brit Hume’s son. These fathers don’t realize that they prop up the very organizations and beliefs that led to such extreme tragedy in their own lives. sad….

  23. rjp3 says

    Hmmm I think comments are a place to share ideas — I am not all knowing … I said it was a rumor. Rumors are usually based on some reality. That information is shared with you and take from it what you will. After the years I have lived on earth … very very few celebrity rumors seem to turn out false.

    Still believe this one. Rings true.

    Either way he is a christianist bigot. HE HAS A LONG WORKING RELATIONSHIP with this bigoted group. Look it up.

    This PC crap you people post is LAME.

  24. James says


    You are funny. Now it’s a rumor. Here is what you said:

    “The not to bright man’s son KILLED HIMSELF because he was gay – and the HATRED this man expressed and maybe the hatred spread by his church leaders.

    Religion and a religious man drove a gay man to suicide.

    Now this shit can’t accept that his son was really gay. So he blames gay society for “confusing” and “leading astray” his son.”

    No where in this screed is the word rumor. You presented it as fact as if you are all knowing. Heck we don’t even know Dungy’s ideas about gays and lesbians. He gets no points talking to these folk, but if he goes and says we have to love our gay children then what will you say? My point is simply this: there are tons of rumors but not one fact. That is not PC, by the way. Just smart.


  25. RJP3 says

    Thanks for the repost … go intellectually masterbate to someone else … the facts are the are good legs to this rumor. While your busy denying the obvious… look up right wing Christianist Brit Hume’s son – he was gay “allegedly” and blew his head off. Hmmm Christinists and Gay Suicide. No link there. You know … you cant believe everything you read in the comments section and I dont feel the need to do foot notes.

  26. James says


    You are so childish. Really. You say something is a fact. Get called on it. Then say “don’t blame me. It’s a rumor.” Now it’s your right to believe in rumors and to be childish, but some of us like facts. Sorry about that buddy!

  27. rudy says

    Facts are useful but without the ability to reason from them to draw logical conclusions they remain unconnected data. James Dungy’s story is all too familiar to too many of us who have witnessed gay youth suicides. Societal bigotry at large is horrible enough but compounded by familial religious zealotry becomes unbearable for many. Be thankful James et al. that you have not had to endure the pain of loss of a gay brother who thought he could not face his parents’ religion-based disapproval and yet not change something so fundamental to his being as his sexual nature.

  28. James says


    Please stop with the melodrama. All I’m saying is that we do not know why the kid killed himself. I know way too well about young gay kids killing themselves, but to assume James Dungy’s tragic death came about because he was gay is simply wild conjecture.

  29. rudy says

    James, My life is not melodramatic and I have never treated it as such. Your snide little hissy fit is inappropriate and immature. Although you appear intellectually incapable of drawing reasonable inferences and lack life experience upon which to draw do not ascribe your failings to others.

  30. James says


    You are right. I am snide. But I have to confess your holier than thou screed was over the top and filled with melodrama. What “reasonable inferences” are you referring to? The young man’s sensitive nature? So being sensitive is now the monopoly of gay kids? You’ve never heard of a straight kid who mothers adored and was also sensitive??? Maybe you lack those “life experiences” you speak so highly of.

    All I have said is we have no idea why the young man killed himself. Now if that is too complicated for you, then there is not much I can do. Be well.


  31. rudy says

    James, And all I expect of those who comment here is to think before writing but that is obviously asking you to do something new and unfamiliar. Ad hominem attacks, as you so amply demonstrate, are the last resort of intellectual cowards, your signature closing notwithstanding.

  32. Greg says

    So, now we can’t cheer for the Colts because of this? Does everything have to be a big political statement? I’m a gay male and support our rights, but taking sides in a football game? Please! Someone needs some thicker skin.

  33. Ariel says

    If anyone has seen teh movie, “The Shipping News”. You will remember that the media and newpapers wil suplant clues. In Dungy’s sons case they say his “Girlfriend”, but also sensitive and gentle. They’er guilty, but may be right. Regardless, he’s gone, let it be. I will say as a black, young, educated, gay, and mother loved male that the black community is very overwheling prud of their intolerance on social issues. Pick a topic and they will vote no citing religious right, but let Shanikia get pregnant. Let their Heisman trophy winning son do drugs, knockup chicks and marry outside his race…they’re collective silence could be compared to crikets in the forest. I don’t like sweeping generalizations , but I am a gambling man. I will bet you if you line up 10 blacks, nine will aggressively deny the rights of others 9 to 1. “People who forget the past are condemn to repeat it.” Colored are no different.

  34. James says

    Oh Rudy you wound me sir. Right to the heart. An “intellectual coward.” The horror, the horror. Hopefully one day I will be able to attain your high standards. Be well brother.


  35. rudy says

    James, You are too lazy to engage in a meaningful discussion. Continue to refuse to think and your misplaced (and grammatically incorrect) hope will avail you nothing.

  36. James says


    Well let’s do this: why don’t you just tell me what to think because it seems as if you can’t handle being disagreed with. I’m waiting for your talking points brother.


    PS: Congratulations to Dungy and his Colts for winning the Super Bowl.

  37. rudy says

    James, I do not care to dictate your opinions, but you must think before you post,if you actually want to engage in a conversation. Others disagree with me daily in my profession but they do it in a thoughtful and logical manner. I am paid to teach others how to analyze, how to draw logical inferences and conclusions, how to construct a defensible and cogent argument, and how to successfully advocate a position. Your posts exhibit none of these qualities. Accordingly, your sophomoric (I suppose you intended sarcasm) suggestion that I provide you with talking points would not benefit you, in contrast to those who pay me to prepare talking points on complex technical and legal issues. Your posts amply demonstrate your inability–intentional or not–and deliberate unwillingness, to think. Unlike others with whom you may associate, I am not willing to indulge you when you lapse into your, by now well-established, pattern of intellectual sloth and stolidity.

  38. Susan says

    To RJP3 –

    1) DO NOT belittle or trivialize my name! I referred to you by the exact name you posted, I expect you to do the same – or is a sexist lack of manners an expected mainstay of your social skill set?

    2) You did indeed initially present your rumor-based argument as fact; you were caught, and you are now caught up in your own net of misinformation.

    3) You are patronizing, mean-spirited and rude.

    Congrats Tony and Peyton on a well-deserved win.

    Prince ROCKED!

  39. rudy says

    James, You have successfully hijacked this thread with your cocoon of ignorance. Because you are unwilling or unable to think you have made this about you rather that Tony Dungy supporting a group whose teachings–I surmised–contributed to the suicide of his son. I will eventually be proven correct; you have proven indolent. Just go. And sing Kumbaya with yourself.

  40. says

    people have mentioned homophobia throughout the thread. now, what does “phobia” mean? a phobia is a fear or something, not a hate of it. get your vocabulary straight, uneducated liberals. and next question: is it a wrong to be scared of something? No, its not wrong to be afraid of something, people can not control their fears.

    and oh yeah by the way, i think its great that Tony Dungy is giving money to the IFI. he hasa right to his own personal opinion. gay people have a right to be gay, and we have a right to have our own opinion too.
    by TYLER:
    “Are gay men and women so easily offened and need validation, that they just can’t stomach the idea that the world does not revolve around gay rights? maybe, trying to blend in and not forcing and looking under every rock for a bigot would be a better route to equality.”
    tyler put it very well. im Catholic and dont go around looking for people who hate catholics so i can start a fight over it. but every time someone doesnt bow to the gay agenda, they take great offense like “what, you mean the world doesnt revolve around us and other people are actually allowed opinions nowadays too? we didnt know that.”

    kudos to Tony Dungy, and not giving to the pressure of the liberal media.