NBA basketball player Jason Collins has made a gigantic leap for the gay community by revealing his interest in same-sex relations in an exclusive interview with Sports Illustrated.
According to reports, Collins’ annoucement makes him the first active NBA player to reveal his sexual preference for men.
Washington Wizards center Jason Collins — who’s been playing in the NBA since 2001 — has revealed he’s gay … making him the first major active American male pro athlete to come out of the closet . Collins revealed the news in an article for Sports Illustrated … saying, “I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black. And I’m gay.” He continued, “I didn’t set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I’m happy to start the conversation.” (TMZ)
Collins said he initially broke the news to his twin brother last year.
Collins — and his twin brother Jarron — have been high profile athletes since high school … when they were two of the highest rated prep players in the country. They both went on to become standouts at Stanford … and were each drafted into the NBA in 2001. Jason says he didn’t come out to his twin until last summer. “I’m glad I can stop hiding and refocus on my 13th NBA season.” (TMZ)
In the Sports Illustrated feature, Collins also reveals he is a free agent after spending last season with the Washington Wizards.
Now I’m a free agent, literally and figuratively. I’ve reached that enviable state in life in which I can do pretty much what I want. And what I want is to continue to play basketball. I still love the game, and I still have something to offer. My coaches and teammates recognize that. At the same time, I want to be genuine and authentic and truthful.” (Sports Illustrated)
A few days ago, West Coast rapper Snoop Dogg weighed in on the rap community not being open to gay hip-hop artists and even referenced the same situation happening in sports.
“I don’t have a problem with it. It’s the mentality of the rap generation. The mentality of the rap generation is masculine. Macho,” Snoop explained in an interview. “That’s like having a football player playing in games, and all of a sudden at the end of the season he tells you, ‘Hey, you know I’m gay, guys. I like you, too.’ It’s a different feeling as opposed to saying it up front and early and you dealing with it.” (“Big Morning Buzz Live”)
A couple weeks ago, Grammy-winning singer T-Pain also spoke out in defense of same-sex relations.
After his assistant was bullied online, rapper T-Pain dissed the haters with a tweet reminding everyone that gay men don’t lust after every single guy in the world. “Attention homophobic idiots: if you’re not attractive to straight women, you’re probably not attractive to gay men. You can unclench now,” T-Pain posted on Twitter. “Just see a lot of ppl lookin at my assistant like ‘oh no better not go that way. That guy wants my butt.’ Don’t be an idiot. Ur still fugly.” (New Now Next)