While professional sports here in the States are making some progress on gay inclusion, the soccer circuit remains a hotbed of homophobia. Welsh player Daniel Thomas was suspended earlier this year for tweeting hate at British diver Tom Daley and American player Colin Clark too had to sit out games for his own hateful remarks.
Manchester United goalie Anders Lindegaard hopes to see that change, and he thinks that will only happen if a gay player comes out.
"Gay people need a hero. They need someone who dares to step forward and stand for their sexuality," Lindegaard said in an open letter, according to The Sun.
More from the 28-year old:
Homosexuality in football is a taboo subject. The atmosphere on the pitch and in the stands is tough. The mechanisms are primitive, and it is often expressed through a classic stereotype notion that a real man should be brave, strong, aggressive and loyal.
And it is not the image that a football supporter associates with a gay person.
Of course it is a problem for young gay guys who love football, and feel they must stop their sport. Any discrimination is totally unacceptable, regardless of whether it is to do with coloor, religion or sexuality.
A gay player would fear the reception he gets from fans. My general impression is that other players would accept a gay player without any major problems.
Another football player from across the pond, Joey Barton, spoke out against homophobia on the pitch earlier this year.
With the New Jersey gubernatorial race around the corner, the state's LGBT activists are both publicly and privately encouraging Democratic Newark mayor Cory Booker to run against GOP incumbent Chris Christie.
"Do I think Cory Booker is the only Democrat who can beat Gov. Christie? No," Garden State Equality executive director Steven Goldstein said of the popular, heroic and gay friendly mayor. "Do I believe that he has a much better shot than anyone else? Absolutely."
And Fred Sainz from Human Rights Campaign agrees that Booker is in a unique position, both for his national visibility and the LGBT community's devotion. "Like few others, Cory Booker manages to capture the imagination of the LGBT community from all over the country, and from all walks of life," he said. "I would suspect a wide diversity of Americans would support his campaign and help get him the resources he needs to win." And then there's the obvious difference in LGBT politics: Booker endorses marriage equality, while Christie vetoed an equality law for political gain.
No official word on whether Booker will run, but two sources told the Star-Ledger that Booker will decide before Christmas. If he does, the NJ governor's race, with two such boisterous, charismatic figures, could easily become the main attraction in an otherwise sleepy off-year election season.
Human Rights Campaign's breaking into political primetime: the Sunday morning news shows.
The group this morning will begin running a new 30-second commercial, "Dawn of a New Day for Marriage Equality," in which actor and famous narrator Morgan Freeman spells it all out.
"America stands at the dawn of a new day," he says as images of women's suffrage and Martin Luther King Jr leading the Million Man March flash across the screen. Just as people did during those civil rights fights, we must now all come together to support our gay and lesbian comrades.
"Now, across our country, we're standing together for the right of gay and lesbian Americans to marry the person they love," Freeman says. "And, with historic victories for marriage, we've delivered a mandate for full equality. The wind is at our back, but our journey has just begun."
In a statement celebrating the commercial, HRC President Chad Griffin remarked, "This year proved to be a pivotal turning point in the movement for marriage equality and now we press onward with renewed vigor and public opinion squarely on our side."
"As we continue the march toward full equality in legislatures and the courts, it is crystal clear that the prospect of an equal future is no longer up for debate; the question now is how soon it will arrive," he said of the ads, which will run throughout the week after premiering on the Sunday round-tables today.
Watch it AFTER THE JUMP.