Monday, February 10, 2014

Michael Sam, race, sexual orientation, and commodities

Earlier today, I read (and subsequently posted a link to) a Huffington Post article about the 18 worst reactions to the coming out of Missouri College football player Michael Sam.

I posted a comment in answer to someone who took it upon themselves to use the situation to play armchair psychologist and proclaim the African-American community intrinsically homophobic. My response got some people not exactly happy at me. I rolled eyes when reading their responses while thinking "here we go again."

I hardly talk about how some lgbts take situations like Sam's coming out and combine anecdotal evidence (in this case the number of ugly tweets coming from African-Americans) to suddenly declare black people to be the standard of community homophobia. I find these individuals' lack of common sense to be annoying and their immediate reaction to be indicative of how unfortunately some in the lgbt community are always so ready to react rather than think things through. And you know how it is when some of us lgbts get into that mode of "righteous indignation." Even Jesus can't calm us down.

One would think that folks would refrain from making rash generalizations in lieu of the aftermath of the 2008 Prop 8 vote in California. Back then, the false story that black folks led the way in passing that awful law led to an awful community clash and by the time the truth came out, both communities were nursing hurt feelings coming from the exchange of ugly words. And why shouldn't they?  Being called a "ni - - -ger" by an lgbt hurts as equally as being called a "fa---ot" by an African-American

I asked myself why were some folks so quick to attack the black community today over the words of a few ignorant tweets. I think it's all about a matter of mindsets and priorities. Some lgbts who are quick to call the black community homophobic will easily point to the times in which the anti-gay right is able to corral the black community to oppose marriage equality and other issues of lgbt equality.

''Right to discriminate' laws will be new threat to lgbt equality' and other Monday midday news briefs

Wave of new state bills: Religious freedom or license to discriminate? - This is the warning and the lgbt community should pay heed. With the push of "right to discriminate" laws, anti-gay groups and their supporters seem to be surrendering on the fight against marriage equality and instead trying to push a legislative virus in our victories. 

Robert Oscar Lopez parlays Woody Allen's heterosexual behavior into attack on gay parents - Tune in next week when Lopez will no doubt parlay the loss of the Denver Broncos in the recent Super Bowl into an attack on gay parents.  

The Christian Right's Bizarre Delusions of Persecution - If there is one thing from this article you should remember, repeat, and send amongst your friends, it's the five steps the Christian right use to pretend victimhood: 

1) Enter into a community that is, by its nature, inclusive of people of various faiths and beliefs.
2) Break some common rule everyone is expected to follow. 
3) Get corrected or punished for breaking the rule. 
4) Squeal about how it’s because you’re a Christian and they’re bigots and oppressors. 
5) By the time the truth gets out, your story will be an urban legend spread far and wide, and your fellow conservative Christians will never really know the facts.  

Why Conservatives Defend Ex-Gay Therapy: Gay People ‘Entrap’ And ‘Groom’ Children - Give the anti-gay right time and they will do something monumentally stupid. In this case, it's the Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver. The Liberty Counsel is leading the court charge against states who outlaw the discredited practice of "ex-gay" therapy for minors. But forget the arguments of parents rights and such the group will most likely use in court. What Staver said in a recent interview about gays "entrapping and grooming" children is a good reason why he should be called to testify by those defending the laws against "ex-gay" therapy. 

18 DISGUSTING Responses To Michael Sam, Gay Football Star, Coming Out - Like I said, it's not easy being a pioneer. The irony is that I bet none of these cowards would say this stuff to Mr. Sam's face.

Top NFL prospect Michael Sam comes out. What will happen next?

All of the talk yesterday was about top NFL prospect Michael Sam, defensive lineman of the Missouri Tigers, coming out of the closet and his desire to be in the NFL. For those who have not seen, the following is the interview:

I support him tremendously, but now comes the million dollar question. Just how will his coming out affect his draft prospects. Before coming out, he was a top pick. What's going to happen now?

While everyone is toasting Sam for his courage, according to an interview with eight anonymous football executives and coaches in Sports Illustrated, he will now face a hard road and that's if he is even picked for a team:

“I don’t think football is ready for [an openly gay player] just yet,” said an NFL player personnel assistant. “In the coming decade or two, it’s going to be acceptable, but at this point in time it’s still a man’s-man game. To call somebody a [gay slur] is still so commonplace. It’d chemically imbalance an NFL locker room and meeting room.”

All the NFL personnel members interviewed believed that Sam’s announcement will cause him to drop in the draft. He was projected between the third and seventh rounds prior to the announcement. The question is: How far will he fall?

“I just know with this going on this is going to drop him down,” said a veteran NFL scout. “There’s no question about it. It’s human nature. Do you want to be the team to quote-unquote ‘break that barrier?’”

My opinion? I think Sam has a good shot, if he is chosen, to be an excellent player and I also think he can withstand the machismo and nonsense which comes with being in the NFL.

But like all pioneers, he is going to have to deal with a lot of flack and bad assumptions.