Jason Collins Reveals He is Gay
The NBA has never had an active player come out and reveal he is openly gay. Jason Collins is currently a free agent after finishing this season with Boston and Washington. However, that doesn't make this any less powerful. Collins follows the trail John Amaechi paved when he revealed his true colors after retiring from the game.
Amaechi was treated by most with respect and dignity, however, it was not meant to be a smooth-sailing type of announcement, there will always be backlash and those who do not understand. Tim Hardaway, a former Al--star point guard and father of Tim Hardaway Jr. who just declared for the NBA Draft after a trip to the Final Four with Michigan, was strongly against Amaechi's sexual orientation. He took heat for the comments he made below following Amaechi's announcement:
"You know, I hate gay people, so I let it be known," Hardaway said. "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."
Collins is a brave soul because he still wants to continue playing basketball after his announcement. He will be looking to entice a team to scoop him up and inherit this PR dream scenario. At 34, Collins has already played for 6 NBA teams, made two trips to the NBA Finals and has defended every great big man of our generation.
He has always been known as a great locker room guy. And if sexual orientation can lead to discord in the locker room, then the world we live in has some adjustments to make. The times have changed. Radical thinking is transitioning into the backseat. Collins has paved the way for future generations of gay athletes trying to find a place in the same locker room as their straight teammates.
His decision to reveal his sexual identity comes at a strange time in sports. Recently, it was said that a few NFL players were set to reveal they were gay as well. Collins made an effort to put this into writing so those who judge originally will have the opportunity to read and understand his story.
The Sports Illustrated issue will be available May 6th, 2013.