Out gay LA Galaxy footballer Robbie Rogers wrote a letter to his 14-year-old self for a special 'Kids in Sports' edition of ESPN The Magazine.
You're walking around with a cramp in your stomach. You feel trapped within yourself. The pressure of being a high school freshman and playing for the U16 national team is stressful enough. But on top of that you're worried that you're different from everyone, especially your teammates. And you think that if they figure out who you are, you won't be able to play the sport you love, or your family won't agree with it. Sometimes you pray and think: I don't wanna live through this. Why can't I be like my brothers and sisters?
I'm not going to tell you to come out at 14 years old. I'm not going to tell you what's going to happen in the future either, because the journey is important. But I want you to realize that God made you this way for a reason. You're not damned or going to hell. You didn't have a choice in this. But you do have a purpose in life, just as everyone does.
When guys say things in the locker room, remind yourself that most of them don't actually feel this way. They aren't really homophobic. These are people who are trying to please others, or think that's what they're supposed to say. Everyone is dealing with something whether they're gay or straight. You don't have to feel like you're alone. Which brings me to this: If there's any great advice I can give you, it's to find someone you can speak to about what you're feeling inside, someone you can trust who won't judge or expose you. Because you can't walk around with a burden like the one you're carrying. You've got to share this with somebody.
I know I said I wouldn't tell you what your future holds, but I will tell you that everything's going to be fine -- one day you'll be happier than you ever thought possible. And while you can't envision sharing your secret now, the world is changing. People are becoming more accepting. And when the time is right, the day might come when you're ready to face the world as the beautiful person you truly are.
See the actual letter HERE.
In other news, Rogers talks about the importance of properly caring for and loving your dog in a new video for PETA.
Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...
DEDICATION: Zack Swanson of Follow Productions Limited produced this video against Minnesota's anti-gay amendment.
SHARON NEEDLES: For PETA.
BOOM BARRIER'S REVENGE: And one day the machines fought back.
HILLCREST ACE: San Diego hardware store named 'coolest on the planet'!
For recent Guides to the Tube, click HERE.
Earlier this summer, Andy began chronicling the growing animosity between PETA and Lady Gaga, after the songstress appeared in a b-movie promo poster dressed in what looked like a wolf carcass. At the time, PETA vice president Dan Matthews warned Gaga: "... you're making yourself a target just like the mindless Kim Kardashian." (Kardashian had recently been flour-bombed by a PETA activist.)
Gaga, it appears, doesn't much care: She was spotted and photographed wandering around Cologne this week wearing what looked like the carcass of an arctic fox.
Though I cannot find the post, ABCNews notes that Gaga has posted this message to her website:
I am choosing not to comment on whether or not the furs I purchase are faux fur-pile or real because I would think it hypercritical not to acknowledge the python, ostrich, cow hide, leather, lamb, alligator, 'Kermit' and not to mention meat, that I have already worn.
You see a carcass, I see a museum pièce de résistance.
Gaga proceeded to condemn PETA's "violent, abusive, and childish" brand of activism.
In 2009, Lady Gaga appeared on Ellen and described and condemned the wearing of fur:
Ellen DeGeneres quickly turned the conversation to fashion with Lady Gaga running down a list of her costume and hat designers ... One costume that has been dubbed the Kermit The Frog outfit was made by designer Jean de Castelbajac, and looks like a bunch of Kermit The Frog puppets glued together to make a top. Lady Gaga told Ellen DeGeneres, "I really loved that one in particular because I thought it was a commentary on not wearing fur, 'cause I hate fur and I don't wear fur.
Yesterday I posted a letter from PETA VP Dan Mathews to Lady Gaga objecting to the fact that she wore fur on several recent occasions.
Gaga fired back over Twitter late yesterday:
"For those press and such who are writing about whether or not my fur is actually real, please don't forget to credit the designer HERMES. Thank You! LOVE, gaga"
Mathew suggested in his letter that her response would determine whether she would be "targeted" like Kim Kardashian, who was flour-bombed at a red carpet event.