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Sports And Society
Popular social news site Reddit has a page, IAmA, where various people who’ve done interesting things, have an interesting personal story, or are just well known, let users of the site ask them questions. A sampling of those who’ve opened themselves to a public grilling lately: a professional dominatrix, a pilot of a plane that transports human organs, and Community’s Gillian Jacobs. Jimmy Kimmel’s stopping by next week. It’s a diverse crowd, but we were especially fascinated by one particular subject line that popped up yesterday.
We’ve all got a right to express what we feel without getting in (legal) trouble for it. It’s the First Amendment, it’s a freedom many other parts of the world still don’t have, and for that reason as much as any other, it’s a freedom that should be exercised. Florida Panthers 2011 second-round NHL Draft pick Rocco Grimaldi (we can’t hear this name and not think “Rocco Siffredi,” which, as you will soon see, is especially laced with irony) isn’t afraid to exercise that right. Like, really not afraid.
Last week, the Philadelphia Flyers’ Wayne Simmonds, who is black, had a banana thrown at him during a preseason game. The incident was widely, and rightly condemned, and Simmonds handled it about as well as anyone could. But it didn’t take long for the shoe to find the other foot.
Once upon a time, in a book about the Dallas Cowboys, Skip Bayless mentioned rumors that Troy Aikman might be gay. Years later, Bayless stood by including those rumors in his book. And now a couple years after that, Aikman’s talking about those rumors. And if you can believe it, he’s less than thrilled.
With New York State’s passage of a bill allowing same-sex marriages in the state on Friday night, it was only a matter of time before athletes were asked about their opinions on homosexuality in sports.
David Tyree made a really awesome catch once, and as a consequence, his views on gay marriage will be reported on.
Give the New York Rangers’ Sean Avery credit: it doesn’t appear his same-sex marriage advocacy is just for show.
Over the weekend, MMA fighter Quinton “Rampage” Jackson won a fight, then did an interview with reporter Karyn Bryant. That interview was…well, it was.
The Bulls’ Joakim Noah received a $50,000 fine today for using a homophobic slur. That’s half of what Kobe Bryant was fined for the same word. Fair? PTI debated.
When Phoenix Suns president Rick Welts publicly revealed his homosexuality two days ago, he immediately became one of the biggest stories in the sports world…but he knows others in sports would have a tougher time coming out than he did.