Basketball Hub




5 Closeted Gay Basketball Coaches Attack 'Tacit And Overt' Discrimination In The Sport: VIDEO

Andrew Goldstein

Five anonymous closeted gay college basketball coaches have spoken to Outsports about homophobia in the game and forced lifestyle contracts that are driving them to suicidal thoughts and out of the profession.

One of the anonymous players says that although the National College Athletic Association and many sports corporations have attacked Indiana’s anti-gay law, they “have been perennially silent about the tacit and overt discrimination being levied against gay people in college basketball on a daily basis.”

“As the rest of the nation moves toward inclusion in the workplace, discrimination in college basketball is taking a heavy toll.

“That toll was present in all of the conversations I had with closeted gay college basketball coaches in Indianapolis and since. Each expressed outright pain they felt living a lie in college basketball. Yet they say that lie has been mandated by coaches, administrators and school policies that at best turn a blind eye to homophobia and at worst promote it.”

LogoJim, an assistant at a Division 1 school, says he hit rock bottom because of “a team atmosphere built around years of anti-gay comments by coaches and team members.” His team “was engaged in homophobia so rampant that it drove him to that brink of suicide.”

Tony adds:

"I think about coming out every day. I want to do it every single day. I try to get myself prepared to do it every single day. But that fear of breaking those relationships or losing my job or losing recruits, it just kills me.

"When I get to be around the gay community and my friends, and when I'm home with my friends, that feeling is just becoming way more important to me than holding onto this job. I love the game but I need to have an authentic life.

"If I can't come out soon, I'm going to have to leave the sport. I can't do this much longer."

Watch Andrew Goldstein (above), the first openly gay American male team-sport professional athlete, explain "Why It Is No Longer OK To Say 'Fag' and 'That's So Gay,'"  AFTER THE JUMP

Continue reading "5 Closeted Gay Basketball Coaches Attack 'Tacit And Overt' Discrimination In The Sport: VIDEO" »


LGBT Banner Flies Over Final Four Stadium As Hundreds Rally in Indianapolis for Statewide Nondiscrimination Protections

Rally

With all eyes still on Indiana as the Final Four NCAA men's basketball championship kicked-off in Indianapolis yesterday, LGBT advocates continued to hold a spotlight on the fact that despite Gov. Mike Pence's "fixed" religious freedom law, it remains completely legal in the state to discriminate against an individual based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. 

The AP reports on the hundreds of people who marched through downtown Indianapolis yesterday calling for statewide LGBT nondiscrimination protections:

March organizer Dominic Dorsey II told the crowd as it gathered on the steps of the city's Monument Circle that the Legislature's move was only a beginning. He said lawmakers now need to add legal protections to state law to prohibit workplace discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

"This new language that they've added is like stabbing somebody in the back and then pulling it out three inches and saying, 'You're all right, right? We're good now, right?" he told crowd, which shouted back "no!"

Dorsey then led the gathering in chanting "Hoosiers don't discriminate! — No more Band-Aids masking hate!" as they began a march that carried them several blocks past the city's business district, bars and restaurants to the Lucas Oil Stadium, home of this year's men's Final Four.

MoveonProgressive advocacy organization MoveOn.org flew a banner reading "Sir Charles is Right: Discrimination is Wrong" over the stadium twice yesterday. The banner was in reference to former NBA star Charles Barkley, who has been vocal in his opposition to Indiana's "license to discriminate."

The National Association of Basketball Coaches also hosted a panel at its convention Saturday aimed at speaking for gay and lesbian athletes. Derrick Gordon and Jason Collins were in attendance. 

The Indianapolis Star meanwhile has also called for full, statewide LGBT protections.

From the paper's editorial board Friday:

Now we need to set out on the path to make Indiana a symbol of equality for all. That means enacting a state law that fully prohibits discrimination in employment, housing, education and public accommodations in all forms.

Let's send a resounding message, unmistakable in clarity: Indiana welcomes everyone. Indiana values everyone equally. Indiana will not tolerate discrimination against anyone.

We are Indiana, a state of fairness and equality.

Check out footage from yesterday's march, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "LGBT Banner Flies Over Final Four Stadium As Hundreds Rally in Indianapolis for Statewide Nondiscrimination Protections" »


Keith Olbermann Rips Indiana: The NCAA Must Move the Final Four — VIDEO

Olbermann

On his show last night, Keith Olbermann delivered a searing argument about why the NCAA must move the Final Four out of Indiana, arguing that sports has always been inextricably involved in politics.

Says Olbermann in his critique:

"The football league in this country and the college sports league in this country are tacitly supporting a law that allows those that have voluntarily chosen to join a group to discriminate and be prejudiced at the expense of those who may or may not have had any choice at all and the reality of course is not. The NCAA needs to move the Final Four out of Indianapolis and the NFL must warn Indiana and the Colts. Because ultimately you and I have a choice - do we participate in these laws, or do we do only as much as even the narrow prejudiced sports leagues of the 1930s, the 40s, and the 50s did. Opt out. Stay away, keep our business elsewhere until the laws of hate are gone."

He adds:

"Your choice is this. Do you endorse in this Indiana law a revival of the kind of hatred that opened the door for Jim Crow or do you repudiate it?"

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

The NCAA has thus far said that it will re-evaulate its relationship with the state going forward but it has resisted, despite calls from high-profile figures like Charles Barkley, removing this year's Final Four from Indiana.

Continue reading "Keith Olbermann Rips Indiana: The NCAA Must Move the Final Four — VIDEO" »


Jason Collins Blasts Indiana's Anti-Gay 'License To Discriminate' Bill: VIDEO

6a00d8341c730253ef01b8d0e76538970c-500wi

Jason Collins, the first openly gay pro athlete in the four major North American sports leagues, has spoken out against Indiana’s recently passed “License To Discriminate” bill, reports IndyStar.

By a vote of 63-31, the Indiana House of Representatives yesterday passed the bill which allows private businesses, individuals and organizations to discriminate against LGBT individuals on religious grounds.

.@GovPenceIN, is it going to be legal for someone to discriminate against me & others when we come to the #FinalFour? http://t.co/uBlKbIf8YK

— Jason Collins (@jasoncollins98) March 23, 2015

Governor Mike Pence says he is "looking forward" to signing the bill.

Collins, who has been mentoring other young, gay basketball players who have yet to come out of the closet, played for 13 seasons in the NBA for multiple teams, including the New Jersey Nets.

Watch the trailer for new documentary Out to Win, which provides insight into the lives of LGBT athletes including Collins, Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King, Wade Davis and Brittney Griner, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Jason Collins Blasts Indiana's Anti-Gay 'License To Discriminate' Bill: VIDEO" »


Jason Collins Has Been Mentoring Other LGBT Athletes Who Have Yet To Come Out Of The Closet: VIDEO

Collins

Jason Collins has been busy since becoming the NBA’s first openly gay player and subsequently retiring from the league. Since leaving the sport, Collins explained in an interview with The New York Daily News he’s spent his time mentoring other young, queer basketball players who have yet to come out of the closet.

“I’m in contact with other athletes, collegiate and professionally who are members of the LGBT community who maybe aren't ready to come out publicly but they have in their private lives,” Collins explained. “At this point it’s up to each individual person who has their life to live.”

He continued:

“I would hope that one day they do come out, especially while they’re active because you can see from my example, you can see from Robbie Rogers in soccer, you can have the best of both worlds.

I know there are more members of the LGBT community who haven’t yet stepped forward and (I’m) encouraging them that when they do that the world is ready to accept them and support them. As far as the NBA goes- the NBA is an incredible league. Basketball is a sport of inclusion and diversity and I hope they’re able to know how good it will be to be able to live their lives that they want off the court and also be able to have their job on the court.”

Watch Jason Collins speak with Chris Hayes about his newfound role as a mentor to young, closeted athletes AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Jason Collins Has Been Mentoring Other LGBT Athletes Who Have Yet To Come Out Of The Closet: VIDEO" »


Former High School Football Star Explains Why He Got 'It Gets Better' Tattoo After Coming Out

Ray

The words "It Gets Better" mean so much to Dalton Ray that he got them tattooed on his arm. 

Ray is a former high school football star who's now a freshman at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.

In a post for OutSports, Ray recounts how he struggled with his sexual orientation — both on and off the field — before finally coming out during his junior year of high school:  

Middle school was a challenge, but high school was the true battle for me. Subtle feelings turned into everyday thoughts. It increasingly became clear this wasn't just a phase for me.

To make it even worse I started hearing my peers, including some of my closest friends, use terms like "gay", "faggot", and "queer" to describe when something was stupid or wrong. Eventually that's how I felt - I felt like something was wrong with me, and worst of all I couldn't even look at myself in the mirror because I was so ashamed of who I was. ... 

One saying that has guided me through all of this: "It Gets Better." It's hard to realize that when you're stuck in the middle of the country hearing gay slurs every day. As I opened up my true self to people, I learned the power and truth of those three words. It's meant so much that I tattooed it on my arm.

In an "It Gets Better" video accompanying his OutSports piece, Ray — who also competed in basketball and track — says he didn't think it was possible to be an openly gay athlete until he became one:

Ray"I had this huge misconception that you couldn't be in sports and also be gay. That's wrong. That's completely, utterly wrong. I think once I actually came out I became a better athlete. I became a better competitor. I also became a better friend, a better brother, a better son, because I was finally being honest with not just everyone around me, but being honest with myself, and that's an extremely important part of life."  

Ray also has a powerful message for LGBT youth who are contemplating suicide:

"A bad day doesn't mean you have a bad life. If you don't think people wouldn't miss you, you're completely wrong, because you have friends and family and people in your lives that would miss you so much, so don't make them know what it feels like to live without you, because you're special, you're unique, you're an awesome person, and it gets better."

Read Ray's full article here and watch his "It Gets Better" video, AFTER THE JUMP ... 

Continue reading "Former High School Football Star Explains Why He Got 'It Gets Better' Tattoo After Coming Out" »


Trending



Towleroad - Blogged