TAG | Steve Young
I must take this time to thank all of allies to the gay community. In being out, I have had the amazing opportunity to feel the support and friendship of many. Over the past year, there have been members of the sports industry vocalizing their support as well. This is certainly not an exhaustive list, and I suspect there are countless others that I either missed, that did not get substantial media coverage, or that made their support in private. I hope that it never becomes redundant for a player, coach, or executive to do so. If you know of any others that are not listed below, please pass them along.
I am thankful to these people for the support they have given in the past year (or so). Listed in reverse chronological order with a quick summary plus links to the original stories.
Nov 25 – Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke and Miami U. (Ohio) Hockey Coach Enrico Blasi support Brendan Burke
Just this past week there was a great article about Brendan Burke and the support he has received from his father, NHL General Manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Brian Burke, and Coach Enrico Blasi of Miami University (Ohio) where Brendan is a student assistant to the hockey team. That these two organizations could be receptive to a gay player is simply amazing. Read more about Brendan’s story and the response from his family and friends: ESPN and OutSports.
Nov 3 – Justin Bourne, ex-hockey player turned writer, calls for the end of using gay slurs in hockey
Justin Bourne isn’t exactly a household hockey name. He’s no Crosby or Ovechkin. I only recognize the name because he shares it with someone who I went to high school with (who, I’ll admit and accept the shame, dunked on me so hard in high school recreational basketball). So although Bourne may not have the same voice that an NHL superstar may have, I am thankful that he has taken the platform he has and his knack for writing to call for the end of using gay slurs in hockey. Read the column he wrote for USA Today or check out his blog.
Oct 6 – Scott Fujita, New Orleans Saints Linebacker, voices his support of gay rights and the National Equality march
I am so glad that Scott Fujita did a few interviews prior to the National Equality March. He is incredibly intelligent, articulate, and well-reasons. Speaking as an adopted child, he understands the importance of having good adoptive families, a challenging or even impossible process for gay prospective parents. The important factor for an adoptive parent is to be loving and supportive, not their sexuality, and it is the kids that ultimately suffer. There is an excellent question and answer interview with Scott in the Huffington Post or you can listen to an interview he did with the Edge of Sports radio show.
Apr 23 – Baltimore Ravens Linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo asks: what’s the big deal with gay marriage?
Before Scott Fujita, Brendon Ayanbadejo made the biggest splash of the year for NFL players supporting the gay rights movement. While none of his remarks about gay marriage are earth-shattering, he asks those same questions that the defenders of traditional marriage never seem to have an answer for: namely, how sacred is marriage considering the divorce rate and pathetic traditions in our society like Las Vegas marriages. Read Ayanbadejo’s column in the Huffington Post.
Nov 8, 2008 – Steve Young and his wife Barbara shun the Mormon plea to support the ban on gay marriage by donating $50,000 to the No on 8 campaign
Okay, this is more than a year old, but I am still very grateful and want to express it. During the Proposition 8 campaign last year in California, the Mormon church encouraged its members across the country to help ban gay marriage. Well, Barbara and Steve Young donated the other way and also proudly posted No on 8 signs in their house. I was quite disgusted by the response posted on an article covering the story; the Mormons came out in throngs to condemn the Youngs. Forget the supposed major tenets of Mormonism for free agency and love, in general. Hypocrisy is an amazing thing. I’ve since lost that specific link, unfortunately, but here are two other articles one by CBS5 and another by the SF Gate.