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Outsports names Tony Dungy 'A--hole Of The Year': VIDEO

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It takes a pretty big a--hole to beat out Russian President Vladimir Putin, but that's precisely what NFL-coach-turned-NBC-analyst Tony Dungy has done. 

In a year when Michael Sam was by far the No. 1 gay sports story, it's no surprise that the LGBT site Outsports has chosen as its "A--hole of the Year" one of Sam's biggest detractors. 

Outsports named Dungy (above left) "A--hole Of The Year" for his statement in July that he would not have drafted Sam, the NFL's first openly gay player — and for a subsequent attempt to cover up his homophobia by saying the statement was based on the fact that Sam's presence would be a distraction, not his sexual orientation. 

The deeply religious Dungy's attempted cover-up was pretty obvious given his record — which includes support for an anti-gay hate group in Indiana in 2007 and a tweet last year saying he didn't agree with openly gay NBA player Jason Collins' "lifestyle."

And Dungy's argument that Sam's presence would be a distraction seems awfully hypocritical — and that much more homophobic — in light of his previous support for other NFL players including dog-killer Michael Vick and wife-beater Ray Rice. 

All of which has continued to fuel speculation that Dungy's son, who committed suicide in 2005, was gay, according to Outsports' Cyd Ziegler: 

It's shameful that NBC continues to give this man a platform from which he can push LGBT athletes and youth deeper into the closet. ... 

People like Dungy are the worst part of sports: heralded for their "fatherly" position to some players and given a pass for creating a dynamic in sports where gay athletes are driven by fear. He needlessly gives Christians in sport a very bad name, and his designation of "father figure" in the NFL gives validity to the anti-gay beliefs of others.

Watch a video in which Ziegler plays Dungy's alter ego, AFTER THE JUMP ... 

Continue reading "Outsports names Tony Dungy 'A--hole Of The Year': VIDEO" »


Michael Sam on Whether His 'Cake Kiss' Was Staged and If He Thinks Homophobia Is Why He's Not In the NFL: VIDEO

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Sitting down with Oprah for an interview that aired on OWN last night, Michael Sam was asked about the infamous "cake kiss" he shared with boyfriend Vito Cammisano that aired on ESPN after Sam was drafted to the St. Louis Rams late in the seventh round of the NFL draft. 

Oprah asked Sam whether the kiss was staged for the cameras, as well as whether he thought the kiss itself was "too much" for America and the NFL to handle

In a separate clip, Oprah asked Sam if he thinks he isn't in the NFL now because he "wasn't good enough to play" or because he's gay.

Find out, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Did you watch the interview and documentary? What did you think?

Continue reading "Michael Sam on Whether His 'Cake Kiss' Was Staged and If He Thinks Homophobia Is Why He's Not In the NFL: VIDEO" »


Michael Sam Opens Up About the Other Gay NFL Players Who Reached Out to Him: VIDEO

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In a promo for Oprah's interview with Michael Sam that airs tonight, Sam talks about the gay men in the NFL who reached out to him to commend Sam for his courage being openly gay.

Sam wouldn't specify the exact number, saying only that a "very few" contacted him, before adding: "there's a lot of us out there."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

And be sure to catch Oprah's full interview with Sam tonight at 10:30 pm PT on OWN following the premiere of the Michael Sam documentary at 9 PT. 

Continue reading "Michael Sam Opens Up About the Other Gay NFL Players Who Reached Out to Him: VIDEO" »


FRC Radio Host Craig James Isn't Sure About Executing Gays, But He's All For Dying To Deny Them Equal Rights

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Craig James, a former TV football analyst, is fond of saying he was fired by Fox Sports merely because of his views against same-sex marriage. 

But it's beginning to seem more likely that Fox Sports let James go because he's a total wingnut with a variety of extremist anti-gay views, which he only began to publicly articulate in 2012 during a failed campaign for US Senate in Texas.  

Those views have come much more into focus during James' current tenure as a radio host for the Family Research Council, an anti-gay hate group. 

The most recent example was Friday, when James spoke with a caller to FRC's "Washington Watch" program.  

Right Wing Watch reports: 

“I want to say something very horrific, a solution, and I think it’s the right solution,” said the caller, who said his name was Phillip. “We pray for the homosexuals, we’ve prayed for our enemies but at the same time when they try to force us to go against God, I think that’s where they cross the line and we should pass laws to execute them when they have judges to go against our businesses.”

And here's James' response: 

"Thank you Phillip. You know what, that part there, I don’t know about the executing, but I do know that we have to be bold and firm and much stronger. God doesn’t tell us and calls us that we have to be timid and to stand for our straight — our beliefs. I’m doing a course right now in seminary and it’s the history of the early church and it’s fascinating, there’s been lots and lots and lots of men and women who have died for their Christian beliefs since the beginning and now we are in a time in this country and in this world where we must be bold and stand for God and His truths." 

In other words, James isn't sure about executing gay people, but he's all for dying to stop them from getting equal rights.

Is there a difference? 

It sounds like James, a one-time NFL running back, would probably do whatever it takes to win — but I suspect the outcome of this struggle will be similar to that of his Senate campaign, when he ended up with 4 percent of the vote.  

Listen to the audio, AFTER THE JUMP ... 

Continue reading "FRC Radio Host Craig James Isn't Sure About Executing Gays, But He's All For Dying To Deny Them Equal Rights" »


Arizona Cardinals Video Director Rob Brakel Comes Out As Gay

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Rob Brakel, video director for the NFL's Arizona Cardinals, said the response has been overwhelmingly positive since he came out publicly as gay this week.

"Reception has been unreal," Brakel told Towleroad. "Couple players that know were awesome. The head coach, GM, and our owner Michael (Bidwill) have been nothing short of AMAZING. They have my back and are happy for me." 
 
But Brakel, who came out Wednesday in an interview with OutSports before the Cardinals' game against the St. Louis Rams on Thursday, also said that for him, the decision hasn't really sunk in yet.  
 
"Busy with game last night, flying back, went to bed at 4am and just woke up to phone going crazy," he told Towleroad on Friday. "I do need a few more hours of sleep but I have to get to work soon. In time I think it will be great for me." 
 
The Cardinals defeated the Rams and are atop the NFC at 11-3, adding to what Brakel called "the biggest year for me." 
 
Brakel, a 17-year veteran of NFL video crews, told OutSports he was inspired to come out publicly while reading gay MLS player Robbie Rogers'' book, "Coming Out To Play," on the team plane Wednesday. OutSports reports: 

"I don't care anymore," Brakel said from his hotel room, the shaking coming through his voice over the phone. "Everyone around me knows who I am. I'm a guy who will give the shirt off his back to help you. I'll do whatever I can to help people. And I've had enough." ... 

As Brakel read the book, the rest of the Cardinals filed past him on the plane. He knew some might look down and see his choice of reading material, but he didn't care. Not only was he engrossed in the story, many of them already knew or suspected he was gay.

Those who've known Brakel was gay include Cardinals head coach Bruce Ariens, to whom Brakel came out at the NFL combine as Michael Sam made his NFL debut earlier this year. And those who've suspected include star wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, who did "the gay math" on Brakel. 

Brakel acknowledged it's tough being gay around the NFL, and he's thought about quitting at times.

A Twitter search for "gay" and "Cardinals" over the last few days shows exactly Brakel and others are up against — and why it's so important for them to come out.


Michael Sam Sr.: 'I Love My Son, And I Don't Care What He Do'

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When Michael Sam Jr. was a member of the Dallas Cowboys practice squad, he lived just a few miles from his 55-year-old father, Michael Sam Sr., who's wheelchair-bound in a nursing home in the Dallas suburb of DeSoto, Texas.

Some family members hoped the short distance would allow the largely estranged men to reconcile, but according to BuzzFeed's Joel Anderson, they never spoke, instead exchanging only a few text messages.

In his in-depth piece about the Sams' complicated father-son relationship, Anderson attempts to resolve discrepancies between Michael Sr.'s version of events and how they were portrayed by the media and publicists in the wake of Michael Jr.'s coming out. Michael Jr. declined to be interviewed for the story.

It's a rather heartbreaking tale that recounts how Michael Jr.'s sister drowned at 2, while one brother was shot to death, another disappeared, and two others have spent much of their lives behind bars. When Michael Jr. was born, his parents had divorced, but they would later remarry before splitting for good.

Even so, Michael Sr. claims he put a roof over his son's head — while the media has reported that a white family in the small town of Hitchcock, Texas, where Michael Jr. grew up, took care of him. Michael Sr., who taught his son to play football, swears he attended every one of Michael Jr.'s home games during his senior year of high school — but one of his son's coaches disputes that.

Media reports portrayed Michael Sr. as a stereotypically absent black father and a homophobe who had rejected his son. But BuzzFeed's Anderson seems to conclude that at this point, it's more about Michael Jr. rejecting his father and other family members, though perhaps understandably.

In any case, Michael Sr. insists that the distance between them should have little to do with the fact that his son is gay. Although Michael Sr. told a local newspaper that he loved his son unconditionally, his comments to The New York Times have been more widely publicized: “I don’t want my grandkids raised in that kind of environment. I’m old school. I’m a man-and-a-woman type of guy.”

But as Anderson, who visited Michael Sr. in Texas, puts it:

Michael Sr. is never going to be the spokesman for Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays. He’s not thrilled about his son’s sexual orientation. But he also hasn’t disowned his son. He never says his son is going to hell. He doesn’t talk about trying to cure him or make him straight. In his own rough-hewn, coarse way, Michael Sr. has accepted that his son is gay. “I love my son,” he said, “and I don’t care about what he do.”

Read the full story here.


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