Chris Kluwe | Football (American) | Landry Jones | LGBT Stories | NFL | Pittsburgh | Sports | Tim Tebow

Landry Jones, Rookie Steelers Quarterback, Supports Gay Players Despite Christian Background

Pittsburgh Steelers rookie quarterback Landry Jones spoke with Outsports reporter Cyd Zeigler at the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) Rookie Premiere.   He discussed his Christian beliefs and the novel perspective that they shouldn't interfere with having a gay player on his team.  Asked about how Christian and gay players would mesh on the field, Jones had this to say:

Landry_jones"There's not a conflict," Jones said. "People are people and God tells us to love everybody. And so that's what I do."  

"Now, do I condone what they're doing? No, I don't think it's right," he continued.

"But, am I going to go out there and not talk to them? Am I going to go out there and be hateful and mean to them? I think that's ignorant. I think we respect and love everybody. But, there's also a moral standard there for me, and I'm going to take a stand on that. I don't think it's right, but it's their life and I'm not going to go up because someone is gay and be mean or hateful and say terrible things to them. I'm going to treat them like a human being."

Jones recalls other NFL players, the notorious Tim Tebow in particular, with his strong Christian background.  During their interview, Zeigler noticed a Biblical passage from Philippians printed on Jones' hand.  But Jones also respects the gay community, and gay players:

"It doesn't matter if you're gay or if you're straight," Jones said. "If you can play the game of football, you're going to be on a team and you're going to have a job. Just like if you're in a regular business setting. If you can do your job well, you can do your job. You can get paid and earn a living and provide for your family, whatever your family looks like." 

Jones' words echo the recent outspoken support of former NFL player Kurt Warner and recently dismissed-and-resigned punter Chris Kluwe.  And though Landry is hesitant to fully support the gay community, Zeigler suggests that his may be the halfway-there perspective we need to embrace in the sports world:

If we're going to open sports for everyone, Jones' willingness to put his personal feelings aside and treat people equally is the kind of perspective we must be willing to hear. Just as we want men like Jones to accept us, we must accept them.

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Comments

  1. Sounds like someone needs to read Leviticus 19:28 again.

    Posted by: denizo | May 23, 2013 1:50:25 PM


  2. this would be encouraging and impressive only if every other "Christian" was a Westboro.

    however, every "Christian" is not a Westboro - so his "i won't treat you bad but i do think it's wrong" stance is mediocre at best.

    that said, i'm well aware that at this point aspiring to mediocrity is akin to nobility among these types of social conservatives.

    lower your standards and expectations for human intelligence and this comes across as a bold and encouraging move.


    so, um....yeah. congrats, i guess, on not being actively anti-gay and instead being passive-aggressively anti-gay.

    :\

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | May 23, 2013 1:51:53 PM


  3. Good point Little Kiwi. Most of the people who are against rights are like Jones. They are nice and friendly but still vote against us at the ballot box and elect people like Rick Perry and Michelle Bachmann. They are the people who don't want gay boy scouts or want their children to learn about the existance of same sex couples. Most of the people who voted for Prop were not like Tony Perkins - they were like Landry Jones.

    Posted by: Lee | May 23, 2013 1:56:22 PM


  4. Who cares what these knuckle headed dopes think ?

    And I could do without reading their condescending variation on 'love the sinner, hate the sin' delusions of righteousness.
    Dear Landry, go phuck yourself.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | May 23, 2013 1:57:30 PM


  5. He's allowed to think gay sex is a sin, that's his religion. He's attempting to meet us halfway.

    Ok, I have to go outside & clear my head. Sometimes I get a little too indoctrinated by the Towleroad poster BUBBLE, posters who are outraged at EVERYTHING that does not tow the correct gay party line. Carry on, bubble people.

    Posted by: will | May 23, 2013 2:05:59 PM


  6. exactly, Lee.

    see also: republican senator with gay son who supports his son but votes and supports candidates that DON'T.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | May 23, 2013 2:06:16 PM


  7. First of all in public life why should we care what Christians think? We don't live in a theocracy (yet). It's a tyranny of the majority thing when one person's set of values (based on a myth) is deemed superior to another's.

    He does seem to be taking the love the sinner hate the sin thing a half step further and adding a little "live and let live" into it. Of course his true feelings will only be proven by his actions.

    I think he's a sign of evolution in the millennials where they can be strong in their belief and still imagine others having different beliefs This IS a change from Fallwell, Robertson, Bachman, et. al.

    Posted by: Craig | May 23, 2013 2:07:12 PM


  8. A Christian background has nothing to do with it. The majority of Christians in this country support equality for the LGBT community. Marriage laws passed in RI, MN, & DE because CHRISTIAN legislators voted YES.

    Posted by: stephen stillwell | May 23, 2013 2:08:09 PM


  9. I would need him to explain what he means when he says he doesn't think "it's right". Is he saying that "being" gay isn't right, thereby implying it's a choice? Or, is he saying that being sexually active and gay isn't right?

    You either are gay or you're not. Simply "being" gay can't be wrong since you have no choice in the matter. He could believe being sexually active is wrong. But, he would have to believe the same for all heteros being sexually active outside of marriage as well.

    Posted by: anon | May 23, 2013 2:08:38 PM


  10. I personally do not think that it's moral for people to participate in violent activities that result in serious physical injury, including brain damage and dementia, the medical care for which society/public/taxpayers ultimately end up paying most of the bill. But I'm not going to treat people like Landry Jones hateful, or say hateful things to him, even as I envision him being a diaper-wearing 55-year-old invalid. Treat him with compasssion, yes, but don't glorify his foolish life choices.

    Posted by: Blunt Force Head Trauma | May 23, 2013 2:11:23 PM


  11. Couldn't care less about you Landry.
    I do NOT condone what you do either.


    Whatever that is.

    Posted by: marc | May 23, 2013 2:15:10 PM


  12. I'm with you, Kiwi. While I agree this is movement in the right direction, it is disheartening to realize that our gay news blogs have to post articles of people saying "I do think you are going to hell, but I won't actively harm you" as good news...

    Posted by: CHRISTOPHER I | May 23, 2013 2:16:15 PM


  13. Did he honestly just reference the NFL's biggest closet case as an example of good Christian morality?

    Posted by: Michael | May 23, 2013 2:16:42 PM


  14. I don't see how publicly *taking a stand* against the moral status of your colleagues is showing respect and love for them. If he truly believes gay people should be accepted and respected as players, he should say so without the provision that he also deems them immoral and wrong.

    Posted by: Dastius Krazitauc | May 23, 2013 2:17:26 PM


  15. The problem is that way too many guys in sports have this attitude and this attitude is still more or less a negative one. It's still condemnation. This is akin to what Demario Davis and Kirk Cousins said.

    This isn't acceptance. It takes true acceptance and inclusion to make people feel comfortable in coming out. What we're seeing from a lot of athletes is more tolerance vs acceptance. And tolerance ain't going to change the game. Acceptance is.

    This is a good start. I've been thinking about this the past couple days, when Landry Jones' comments were first released. It's a start. It's respectable. You have respect for me, I have respect for you. But it's not "support". His comments are not supportive.

    Posted by: Francis #1 | May 23, 2013 2:17:55 PM


  16. The problem is that way too many guys in sports have this attitude and this attitude is still more or less a negative one. It's still condemnation. This is akin to what Demario Davis and Kirk Cousins said.

    This isn't acceptance. It takes true acceptance and inclusion to make people feel comfortable in coming out. What we're seeing from a lot of athletes is more tolerance vs acceptance. And tolerance ain't going to change the game. Acceptance is.

    This is a good start. I've been thinking about this the past couple days, when Landry Jones' comments were first released. It's a start. It's respectable. You have respect for me, I have respect for you. But it's not "support". His comments are not supportive.

    Posted by: Francis #1 | May 23, 2013 2:17:55 PM


  17. Geez, no wonder the right wing calls US fascists.

    Posted by: Darren | May 23, 2013 2:25:44 PM


  18. According to this Landry guy what we "are doing is not right."

    That's it. He stands in judgment.
    And what I meant was that the "love the sinner,hate the sin" is itself a smokescreen.

    Everyone who hates the sin, think we are doing wrong, hence we are "not right" in Landry's words......what we are doing ( loving each other ) is not right.
    Thta's the same "intrinsically defective " doctrine of the Catholics.
    None of these Christians love the sinner.
    None of these Christians want to live and let live.
    I can't help but feel that we are becoming so complacent in our mirage advances.
    I read that Africa is being formented by US Evangelical Christians (Christain Campus Crusade)against us; I read that in Tiblisi, Georgia 20,000 attack 50 Gay Activists, who barely get away with their lives.....and the attackers are led by priests !
    Where's the "love the sinner", dudes ?

    @ Will :
    A "Towleroad poster bubble" ?????
    How many more attacks in NY do you need exactly to convince you that anti gay hatred is on the rise ?

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | May 23, 2013 2:26:11 PM


  19. Landry Jones, Rookie Steelers Quarterback, Supports Gay Players Despite Christian Background

    "Now, do I condone what they're doing? No, I don't think it's right," he continued.

    Um, Towleroad, that's not support.

    Posted by: MARCUS BACHMANN | May 23, 2013 2:27:03 PM


  20. Yeah sorry I don't get the animosity. Realistically this type of "love the sinner, hate the sin" attitude is the most we can hope for with these types. I don't consider that hate. It's ignoratn maybe, but definitely not hateful. Stephen also makes a good point that it wasn't just gays and atheist who voted for marriage equality, it was open-minded Christians as well. I know lots of people try to make it like it's a big contradiction but a lot of my friends have no problem believing in God and Jesus Christ as well as believing people are born gay and deserve basic human rights.

    Posted by: Derrick | May 23, 2013 2:29:25 PM


  21. Sorry for the double post.

    We need to ask ourselves, regarding the whole gay/bi athletes in sports issue, where the line is and what we're looking for. Are we looking for tolerance or are we looking for acceptance. If we're looking for tolerance, we've had that for a while. Gay/bi players have been tolerated for a long time. There are guys who are knowingly gay/bi and have been tolerated for years.

    But if we're looking for acceptance than most of these so-called supportive comments don't muster up. I don't think sports is as hateful as many let on, but accepting? Not really. There's still pretty clearly this "other" mentality, we're the other. We're not integrated as a normal, average player, we're seen as that gay player or that bisexual player. And heterosexual players very much are part of the problem with that.

    Can a closeted player go into a locker room today and not hear slurs? Doubtful. Whether it's intended to slur gay people, it's still a gay slur. Can gay players actually talk about their lives, their boyfriend, friends, parties, and actually LIVE as gay in the locker room? Probably not. And until that day comes, don't expect guys to come out. Because statements like Landry Jones' certainly aren't helping the case.

    Posted by: Francis #1 | May 23, 2013 2:30:12 PM


  22. while it's important to keep "perspective", perspectives require discernment.

    yes, it's great that this guy isn't saying "i can't play on a team with gays!" his message of "sin" is utterly ignoble.

    you don't compare yourself with "the worst" to make yourself look better.

    you compare yourself with the best, and see how you measure up.

    comparing yourself to the worst results in folks like GOP Senator Matt Salmon's son - who thinks that his dad isn't an anti-gay bigot, despite promoting anti-gay bigotry and prejudice and discrimination, simply because his dad is no longer forcing him to attend ex-gay conversion therapies.

    to Matt Salmon Jr, this makes his dad great

    compared to a father who would never support or condone prejudice and discrimination against his own son, or any other gay people, it doesn't.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | May 23, 2013 2:30:57 PM


  23. At some point, some of you are just going to have to accept the reality that there are people who have genuine religious convictions regarding homosexuality being a "sin" and "wrong." And Landry's stance is the best it is ever going to get with such people.

    You are never going to eliminate religion; you can do your best to undercut the theological arguments about sex of any kind being "sinful" (I personally think the linking of sex with "sin" is ludicrous and not really theologically justified); you can expose the hypocrisy and insincerity of those who "cherry pick" Scripture and who have a double-standard when it comes to divorce, adultery, and other "sins"........but there will still always be some who will continue to regard homosexuality as "wrong"

    And you are going to have to find a way to live with them, because they are entitled to their beliefs. You don't have to like them, but you do have to accept them.....which is basically what Landry is saying his attitude is towards us.

    And in real life--at the personal level, most "Christians" do not behave with any more nastiness towards gays than lots of other people do...in fact, they behave with quite a bit less nastiness in many cases, often with no real nastiness at all.

    Posted by: Rick | May 23, 2013 2:32:08 PM


  24. This headline is really problematic. Is it despite his Christian beliefs or because of them that he is okay with it?

    Posted by: Eric | May 23, 2013 2:39:35 PM


  25. your inability to be anything other than a closeted Troll proves every word you typed to be wrong, RICK. as per usual.

    so thanks for once again coming online to prove the rest of us right.

    :D

    you will know those of us with spines who do not accept prejudice and bigotry by our refusal to hide in the shadows.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | May 23, 2013 2:40:44 PM


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