A recent article in the LA Times quoted former Angel Torii Hunter as having made some anti-gay comments. He said, “For me, as a Christian … I will be uncomfortable because in all my teachings and all my learning, biblically, it’s not right. It will be difficult and uncomfortable.”
Being a gay player in the current sports culture is still considered a taboo thing, and Hunter isn't the athlete who has expressed concerns like this, but it is still a surprising thing to say. It's especially odd since there is already an issue with religious intolerance of gay people.
However, Torii said that his comments were taken out of context and that the writer of the article mashed two of his quotes together. The baseball player took to his Twitter and said:
“I'm very disappointed in Kevin Baxter's article in which my quotes and feelings have been misrepresented. He took two completely separate quotes and made them into one quote that does not express how I feel as a Christian or a human being . I have love and respect for all human beings regardless of race, color or sexual orientation. I am not perfect and try hard to live the best life I can and treat all people with respect. If you know me you know that I am not anti anything and to be portrayed as anti-gay in this article is hurtful and just not true.”
This definitely puts him back in a better light, but the question is, why did he say it? What could the question have been to have gotten this response from him, which apparently means something much different than it means at face value?
Torii then engaged in some back and forth with Twitter followers. It went:
@ryanmcd22 I was wrong to talk to him about this topic for sure. U can't win.— Torii Hunter (@toriihunter48) December 31, 2012
@cbeavgo I will never talk about that again.— Torii Hunter (@toriihunter48) December 31, 2012
If he really thinks he was taken out of context, and doesn't actually hold the belief originally voiced, wouldn't he want to clear the air with possibly a live interview that can't be edited? Or to come out with a more direct statement?
There are lots of ways to get your point across instead of a vague tweet.
Hopefully one day, a person's sexuality won't be an issue in sports with people who are professionals, and hopefully Torii learned his lesson about what to say, if, in fact, he really didn't mean it.