Tag Archives: John Amaechi

Celebrating LGBTQ History Month: June 3, John Amaechi

3 Jun

Today I would like to honor and pay tribute to John Amaechi.  Many of you may remember that TSM published Amaechi’s response to Kobe Bryant’s using the word “faggot.”  Amaechi was the first NBA player to come out publicly and documents his journey and struggle of being gay in a notoriously homophobic industry, a la Joakim Noah, in his memoir Man in the Middle.  Since retiring from basketball, Amaechi has been an activist for equality and lends his voice to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC).  How nice to see a great sports role model for all kids–“we are everywhere.”

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Bryant, Noah, McDowell: Quite the Ménage à Trois

28 May

L'Amour, L'Amour, L'Amour

Thanks to my friend Jen Lockett for inspiring this story.  That past few months have done nothing to encourage LGBT youth to engage in sports.  In April we witnessed Klassy Kobe with his Queer Bashing.  Then in May, Atlanta Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell made national headlines for making anti-gay slurs at a group of fans in San Francisco. “He also made crude gestures at the fans, in full view of children who were in the crowd,” McDowell’s over the top homophobia may be an indication that he is spending time in bathroom stalls tapping his foot waiting for Larry Craig.  And to round out this trio of twisted troglodytes, we had Joakim Noah also using the word “faggot,” perhaps he was addressing a love interest.

While all three bigots made the 3 minute obligatory apologies, none of them rang true.  When will it become completely unacceptable to use homophobic epithets?  John Amaechi, the now retired and openly gay NBA star recalls how painful it was for him upon coming out:

First of all, I wouldn’t want him on my team,” Hardaway told a radio host in 2007. “You know, I hate gay people, so I let it be known. I don’t like gay people and I don’t like to be around gay people. I am homophobic. I don’t like it. It shouldn’t be in the world or in the United States.

My personal experience is that men who truly are heterosexual and comfortable being heterosexual have absolutely no problem with gays.  However, those that are not secure in their sexuality seem to prove to be squeaky wheels, or at least they were being squeaked. Again, I ask when is enough enough?  When do we stop rewarding bigoted behavior?  When will companies like Nike say: “sorry, but we don’t want homophobic bigots representing our company?  Click here to see the full article.

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