Apparently further than I thought

So last week I wrote a post talking about Jason Collins coming out as a homosexual athlete and I ended the post by saying that I didn’t think we had come terribly far.  But about a week after the announcement I’ve been surprised by the reaction of most people which has been a resounding “meh.”

The media outlets that I’ve seen (primarily ESPN and Sports Illustrated) that dealt with the issue made it seem like something that would be completely Earth-shattering and change all of our lives forever.  Yet a week later, it’s not being talked about at all.  So at this early juncture, I have to say that I’m really quite impressed with the general social outlook.

But there is another aspect to the story that’s begun to bother me more and more.  In reading some of the articles, I’ve seen the names of about 10-15 other former athletes who have been openly gay.  These range from baseball or basketball players in America to European football (soccer) players to a professional bowler.

So why is Jason Collins being lauded as a pioneer in the homosexual community – particularly in sports – when there are so many other people who have come out?  Not even counting athletes, there are quite a few actors and other celebrities who are openly gay.  Another thing that was mentioned in at least one article that I saw was the fact that it’s – expected is the wrong word – more accepted when a female athlete comes out as being gay.

So to sum up my thoughts, we’ve come a lot farther than I originally thought we would, but I’m still a little confused with exactly where we stand as a society on the issue.  I’m still of the opinion that it doesn’t matter and shouldn’t even be an issue that we’re discussing.

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  1. One of the things I’ve been sensing lately is that there is no single “society” that stands pro or con on any issue. Interests and concerns are personal and local. People in Boston care about the burial of the dead bomber. People near Washington care about the Bengazhi hearings. I care about neither, but I was concerned to read this morning that world CO2 levels are higher than they have been in 3 million years.

    Perhaps the best summary I’ve come upon recently was in this week’s Time Magazine essay on “The Millennials,” the popular tag for our current crop of young people. “They aren’t rebelling against the establishment because there is no establishment to rebel against.”

    That, I believe, sums up the situation.

    • I think that quote works perfectly. Perhaps I thought that it would be a bigger deal because the few media outlets that I followed about it made a huge story of it. I also remember a few people being a little disturbed when Scott Norton won a professional bowling tournament in the fall and after winning kissed his husband/boyfriend (not sure which).


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