Jason Collins Shook a Few Bigots Out of the Homophobe Tree
May 6 2013
Jason Collins, via
Jason Collins made his big “I'm gay” announcement last week in Sports Illustrated, making him the first officially out homosexual male athlete playing one of the four major US sports. Although, to be fair, he's currently a free agent. So there's still a chance, knowing the “traditional values” and general shying away from controversy that plagues sports-franchise owners not named Cuban, that he won't take the court again. In light of the announcement, the news media focused on the positive reactions to the revelation. And rightfully so, seeing as they were so plentiful and from all walks of life. But big announcements like these can't help but be met with a vocal minority of the religious-minded seeing this as a “test” from the man upstairs, and the only way they'll pass is by letting their feelings be known to a national audience. As such, the announcement shook out quite a few bigots from out of their trees. Here's a small sample:
- ESPN's Chris Broussard, the first one in the shit show by making clear he believes being gay is “an open rebellion to God,”
- Former NBA player Larry Johnson, most famous for dressing up as a woman for commercials, said that gay men have no place in the locker room.
- An as-yet-unnamed church in Madison, Wisconsin, cancelled a speaking engagement for Green Bay Packers safety Leroy Butler after he sent a tweet congratulating Collins on his announcement.
- Golden State Warriors Coach Mark Jackson said that, as a Christian man, he knows “what's right and wrong,” and he's praying for Collins.
- Daily Beast columnist (now, former) Howard Kurtz attacked Collins for once being engaged to a woman, saying Collins never addressed that pesky issue in his announcement, which he most certainly did.
- A 57-year-old sports editor for a small-town newspaper doesn't think we should categorize Collins as a hero because being gay is a choice he made.
- A whole slew of people—including Rush Limbaugh, Mike Francesa, Tim Brando, Asante Samuel, and, well, a bunch more—tried to diminish the announcement by complaining that people shouldn't even care about it. “Like, who cares about a player's sexuality?” is what sneaky homophobes say, trying to get us to change the conversation so they don't have to feel uncomfortable anymore.
- And, of course, the old faithfuls chimed in: the Westboro Baptist Church protested an NBA game; Pat Robertson said it's fine and dandy to call Collins “an abomination.”
- And, no doubt, a Facebook friend of yours revealed themselves. Meaning, cut that fucking asshole loose.
Which is to say, the good part of all of these people revealing themselves is that it gives us a chance to completely ignore them in the future.
OK then! Onto the non–Jason Collins portion of our roundup!
- A court case in New York decided the five relatives of Osama bin Laden cannot be held liable for the destruction caused during 9/11.
- In southern Afghanistan, a roadside bomb killed three NATO members. Later in the week in Krygyzstan, a US military plane on the way to Afghanistan blew up in midair.
- A confident to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei believes that Jews are behind the international community's putting measures on the Iranian people because of “powers of sorcery.”
- In Israel, a Palestinian militant riding a motorcycle was hit by an airstrike. Google also chimed in on the whole Palestine/Israel thing by by changing the former's designation from simply “territories” to an actual state.
- A passenger on a bus in Santa Monica went a little nuts when another would-be passenger didn't have her fare, calling her “Satan” and pretending the whole thing was an exorcism.
- Over in Thailand, members of an Islamist insurgent group killed six Buddhists, including one two-year-old boy.
- In Iraq, at least 22 people were killed during a series of bombings and shootings. Later in the week, at least 14 members of the anti-al Qaeda militia “the Sons of Iraq” were killed in two attacks in the city of Fallujah.
- An idiot mother in Michigan wants to get the unedited Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl pulled from her daughter's middle school, because she's scared her seventh grade daughter will learn what a clitoris is.
- The Boy Scouts of America: they're OK with gay people sort of, but not really, and they're OK with kids participating being homosexual, but not any group leaders, or something like that, blah-blah-blah, and who knows! (They should probably clarify what they're thinking.)
- Over at Carnegie Mellon University, a female student passed out condoms during a parade while dressed half naked as the pope—including the amazing detail of shaving her pubic hair in the shape of a cross—and boy, oh boy, are the Catholics not pleased about this.
- Four members of a choir at an Albuquerque church were stabbed by a crazed person yelling “fake preacher!”
- The religious-minded fans of the Jacksonville Jaguars have put together a petition for President Obama to use some kind of executive order to force their team into signing Tim Tebow.
- Hoag Memorial Hospital in Orange County, California, banned “elective abortions” after it entered into a partnership with a Catholic charity. The hospital's CEO says this was “not a religious decision,” which is, frankly, a bunch of bullshit.
And Our Person of the Week: This awesome homeless person trying to find out which religion “cares most” by allowing believers or nonbelievers to “vote” by donating money to him in labeled bowls. While there certainly isn't any way to find out if this test is legit, it certainly isn't not shocking that “agnostic” and “atheist” are leading the pack.
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