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Brendon Ayanbadejo: Only 3% Of NFL Is Gay

BrendonBrendon Ayanbadejo, the Baltimore Ravens linebacker who became one of the sport's most vocal supporters of marriage equality this year, was asked by Fox Sport's Alex Marvez whether when he thinks an NFL player will come out while still playing the field.

Basically, Ayanbadejo's not sure, mostly because he thinks there's a far lower percentage of gay people among players than among the general population.

Regardless of when this hypothetical player comes out, though, Ayanbadejo's convinced he'll be able to make some serious cash selling his story.

The transcript, via Outsports:

Marvez: ...How long do you think it will be until the first active gay NFL player emerges?

Ayanbadejo: That's a good question. I don't know. I have a whole theory that some people would believe is kind of counterintuitive to a lot of stuff that I preach about LGBT rights. In no way am I trying to offend the LGBT community. But my theory after playing in the NFL for so long is that there are certain traits NFL players have and don’t have.

Now, if there's a negative thing about NFL players, we tend to be angrier (than non-players). We clearly have higher testosterone because you have to genetically to play this game. With that comes bipolar (disorder), split personality and certain negative things. That’s not everybody, but I think the rate is higher than the general population.

I believe that there are not as many gay people in the NFL as in the regular population. This is a discussion I’ve been having on Twitter for quite some time now. Some people say, "You're stupid." But even though there is not yet a proven gay gene, I believe people are born gay. It is a natural phenomenon.

There are definitely gay players in the NFL. I'm not saying that there are not. Some people say the gay guys in the NFL aren't coming out because they're scared and worried about what’s going to happen to their careers. But I think the first person who comes out and says they are gay, everyone is going to write a book and do stories about them. They're going to make a lot more money by saying they're gay than by not saying they’re gay. But are we ready to hear that? Is that person going to be comfortable to do that? I don’t think they are right now because of society and the way things are.

Eventually, I think there will be someone. But the number (of gay players) is so minute. If they say the regular population is 7 to 9 percent (LGBT), in the NFL it might be 3 percent. I could be completely wrong, but I've played for so long and so many others have. When you hear players coming out that are retired, they are few and far between. Why wouldn’t we hear about more players if it's the same percentage like in the regular population?

What I'm saying is controversial. There is no proof. It's just my theory.

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  1. no, troll rick. because you femme-haters are destined to die in your closets. enjoy!

    you drink your poison and sit and wait for it to kill off others.

    the cowardly gays aren't the proud and Out queens. it's the cowards who spew venom about queens from the anonymity of online.

    behind every "femme-hating" gay man is the father who resented having him for a son.

    thanks for continuing to prove the rest of us right.

    may you off yourself in 2013.

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Dec 28, 2012 2:34:32 PM

  2. "Most same-sex oriented men who play college and professional football are very masculine and mainstream. They are also most likely at least functionally bisexual, not exclusively homosexual/gay. Hence, Thus group is very unlikely to identify as gay or ever come out as such. Very few masculine dudes who are not athletes ever come out, do you know very few NFL players ever will"

    And why is that, Jake? It is for the very reason I have given--that "gay" still carries the stigma of effeminacy and UN-masculinity.

    You are absolutely right when you say that masculine men attracted to other men are never going to associate themselves with a culture of effeminacy, so we will always be limited in the amount of real change we can expect as long as the culture of effeminacy persists.

    There is a reason why the "OUT 100" not only does not include many professional athletes, but virtually no executives (other than entrepreneurs), no prominent doctors, no university presidents or scholars, no scientists, indeed, hardly anyone who is not in the arts or in some other stereotypical ares of society.

    And the reason for that is crystal-clear to anyone who opens his eyes.

    Posted by: Rick | Dec 28, 2012 2:34:48 PM

  3. Football is the game with the weird shaped ball, right?

    Posted by: Mawm | Dec 28, 2012 2:37:16 PM

  4. I don't need to come out because coming out is for fems.

    Posted by: Rick | Dec 28, 2012 2:39:04 PM

  5. You can tell I'm really masculine because all masculine men come on to the interwebs to complain about effeminate men. That's the definition of masculinity.

    And when I was a little girl I liked to poop in my own mouth.

    Posted by: Rick | Dec 28, 2012 2:41:37 PM

  6. #RICK: Honey, don't you have anything to do with your spare time? I mean, girl, give it a rest.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Dec 28, 2012 2:46:52 PM

  7. Football is the game with the weird shaped ball, right?

    Umm, no, football is the game without a ball. They have that egg-shaped leather thingy with two pointy ends that they throw around and kick.

    It's confusing because the Euro countries have football with a real ball, you know, spherical and all. They kick it too, but they NEVER throw it (maybe because it gets all dirty). But THEY let it bounce off their heads! Go figure!

    Posted by: Merry & Gay | Dec 28, 2012 2:57:25 PM

  8. The gay media and Outsports keeps talking of gay men but almost totally ignores bisexual men. Is it because bisexual men aren't as politically useful as gay men?

    Way back in the 1940's - a time when homosexuality was illegal and punishable by jail or death - Kinsey got about half of all men in his research study to admit to having same-sex feelings. Considering the laws against homosexuality at the time, it's amazing that Kinsey got any of his male subjects to admit to it.

    My point is that, while there may be a small percentage of men who are exclusively gay, there are many more who swing both ways. It's the big "dirty" secret amongst men who view any degree of same-sex interest as an embarrassment. Even in 2012, it is still a huge stigma.

    Posted by: steven lucas | Dec 28, 2012 3:11:08 PM

  9. Why does every conversation about gay men turn into an argument about effeminate men versus masculine men? Effeminacy and masculinity are not the definitions of sexuality. They are merely artifices. If you're going to converse on sexuality, please keep the conversation on topic and stop arguing on artifices.

    Posted by: steven lucas | Dec 28, 2012 3:16:43 PM

  10. The guy needs to do his homework. Only 3% of the general population is gay.

    Posted by: G | Dec 28, 2012 3:33:20 PM

  11. Actually, G, you're wrong. Between 5-6% of people in the 20-30 age range identify as gay and that obviously doesn't include closet cases. Kinsey was probably pretty close with his 10% estimate, though you have to take into account those who will marry anyway, identify as straight but seek out men on the side, some of them almost obsessively. That will also include those "religious" folks who have been brainwashed to hate themselves, be professional homophobes when what they want most is c*ck.

    Posted by: Caliban | Dec 28, 2012 3:51:10 PM

  12. It's not a mystery. Men are horny. Kinsey interviewed inmates and members of the military, both of whose choices were limited. Give a straight guy a few drinks and he becomes more sexually flexible. Be fairly attractive and your odds improve at getting ostensibly straight guys in bed. This is news?

    I gave up on it when I was a teen, but straight guys flirt with me nearly every day. It's harmless.

    Posted by: Paul R | Dec 28, 2012 4:36:13 PM

  13. He didn't offer any coherent theory, but he did qualify his statements with plenty of weasel words. There are obvious social reasons why gay men might avoid the NFL. There are possibly biological ones as well. That's not to say that homosexuality has necessary correlates (no study on gay men has a found a single (non-sexual) trait common to all of us), but that different subsets of men have different rates of homosexuality.

    Posted by: Kyle | Dec 28, 2012 5:06:36 PM

  14. I wouldn't call them "weasel words," but he qualified his statements so as not to offend gays, who he clearly supports.

    If you accept or believe that gays make up a higher than usual percentage of certain professions like the creative and performance arts, education, medicine, etc. than you have to accept there are professions where gays are less represented, whether that's due to homophobia inherent in those professions or some supposed intrinsic quality of gays.

    There are probably fewer gay men who are policemen than average, for instance, because policing is quasi-military and has long been tasked with enforcing laws that were in opposition to gay rights. There are exceptions of course, and some are drawn to professions that are seen as overtly masculine for various reasons.

    Posted by: Caliban | Dec 28, 2012 5:58:32 PM

  15. Yes maybe 3% of them are gay but then how many of them are bisexual?

    Posted by: Tony | Dec 28, 2012 7:50:37 PM

  16. I appreciate Brandon and his comments but he just omitted the boatload of bisexuals that exist in the NFL. There are a number of them, but most rather ignore their existence, which is also called "bisexual erasure", something very common and often done by so many.

    Posted by: kayman | Dec 29, 2012 2:23:02 PM

  17. He supplies numbers to accompany his speculations. His claims can then be tested as data gathering improves over time. That's science.

    Posted by: Manny Espinola | Dec 30, 2012 12:23:54 AM

  18. jjose, the first athlete to come out will be a tennis player. A little out of date here, or have you forgotten Billie Jean King or Martina Navritalova or is it that lesbians don't count? Never forget that women have had more courage than men in professional sport and when they came out it cost them a lot in endorsements.

    Posted by: Chris | Dec 30, 2012 2:33:13 AM

  19. I'm not convinced the number of gay men in professional sports really differs from the number in the general population. It makes perfect sense that athletes, like Boy Scouts, start their sports when young and simply keep going in spite of the homophobia they encounter, out of love for their sport.

    There has been more recent research which uses the Kinsey scale but concludes that the number of MALE bisexuals has been *greatly* overestimated.

    OTOH, I have a friend who, back in the late 1970s/early 1980s, was a boy toy for both an MLB player and an NFL player, who now have a wife and children. It was a time when a straight man could have a clearly obvious bottom as a boy toy. He was welcome in the locker room and everyone knew exactly what services he supplied for the player. BTW - The NFL player was also a regular in gay bars: he didn't care who you were as long as you worshiped his body.

    Posted by: Diogenes Arktos | Dec 30, 2012 1:42:23 PM

  20. "If they say the regular population is 7 to 9 percent ..."

    Ayanbadejo is only throwing out a hypothetical number here (He could just ad easily have said any other number) so nobody should jump on this as if he's stating an exact estimate.
    EVERY study on this question can not possibly make an accurate estimate, and the vast majority are obvious UNDERestimates.
    For example, that study fuom UCLA makes statements about what percentage of gay or bi people might be closeted (their most liberal estimates are that around 90% of gay and bi people are closeted).
    . But they seem to assume in all of their estimates that all of the closeted people were willing to tell a stranger who says he's doing a study that they had sex during their adult lives with people of the same sex.
    In reality, some of those people ARE straight and the ones who are actually gay or bi are at most SEMI-closeted if they were willing to chit-chat about real gay experiences in states where doing so means they can be fired from their jobs or kicked out of their home by a landlord.
    Under ALL of the definitions used in the UCLA study (and nearly every other study, including several I HAVE been included in) I would have been counted as 100% heterosexual at most points in my life, in spite of the fact I am completely gay and always have been.

    Posted by: GregV | Dec 30, 2012 2:21:17 PM

  21. Wow - a great article about gay men in the NFL - some good discussion in the comments - and no cracks about Tebow?

    Posted by: TyInTennn | Dec 30, 2012 6:56:33 PM

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