The sports world was rocked on Monday with the news of Jason Collins coming out as gay. “How could this be?” some exclaimed. I will admit that I never expected to see any player coming out, especially during an active career. Some people even went so far as calling his homosexuality “a sin” and “open rebellion to God” such as ESPN’s Chris Broussard. The real story here is not about Jason Collins, or even about the world of professional sports, it’s about us as a society and our socially accepted norms that we cling so desperately to. Sometimes without questioning.
Mike Wallace (@Wallace17_daKid) of the Miami Dolphins took to Twitter to voice his protest. “All these beautiful women in the world and guys wanna mess with other guys SMH…” While his views are very narrow, they are echoed and accepted by a vast number of people. The biggest misconception about homosexuality is that some people believe it’s a choice. I believe that nothing could be further from the truth. Let’s just think for a second: who would knowingly choose to be discriminated against, to be hated, to have their own family reject them, to have society tell them that they are sick and need to be cured? I know I wouldn’t! And that’s coming from an African American living in a country with a very checkered past when it comes to accepting differences.
There was a time when people would not care to know me as a person. Just seeing my ebony skin would tell them all they needed to know. Aren’t we doing the same thing to these good people who just happen to love someone of the same sex?! In honor of the people of my ethnic background who were discriminated against, I make a conscious decision NOT to judge anyone unfairly.
I applaud Jason Collins for standing up and doing what he felt was right and being true to himself. I also applaud those that came out in support of him. In a world where we find more ways to divide and separate, a little understanding would definitely go a long way. Society is teaching us that we should all be the same, when it’s our diversity that is our true gift. We should all look inside ourselves and ask why it is that we care so much about someone else’s lifestyle because we were always taught not to jump off the bridge if everyone else was. Be your own person and allow other people the same to do the same.
Spread love y’all…