In a recent chapter of the gay-guy-playing-pro-football saga, an online article actually supplied me with so much material to write about, I barely knew where to start.
First, ex-football coach and Skeletor look-alike Tony Dungy said he would not have drafted Michael Sam, the NFL’s first openly gay player. Dungy said that he would not have wanted to have to deal with the complexities which Sam’s impeccably stylish, matching personal baggage might contain. I haven’t spoken with Mr. Dungy personally, but I think I understand his logic. Also, he didn’t actually talk about Mr. Sam’s luggage, that was just me using a cute metaphor.
The NFL is a tough place to do business, and potential players are put under intense scrutiny. Teams want to avoid drafting anyone whose off-field behavior might sully the league’s reputation or distract fellow players from remembering blocking assignments and locker combinations. Sports psychology experts will tell you that all it takes is one accused murderer, wife beater, dog fighter or date-rapist to disrupt the delicate balance of locker room morale. Drafting a guy who already “plays for the other team” is just asking for trouble.
It appeared during the draft that many of the NFL’s talent scouts may have agreed with Dungy’s assessment of Michael Sam. After all, it’s one thing to have pink accessories to show support for breast cancer awareness (and then donate pennies to the actual cause), but damn it man, the NFL doesn’t need players to start pushing for rainbows too! You let gay men into the league and the next thing you know they’ll be having “Say Yes To The Dress” marathons on the jumbo-tron!
Boobies – 7 Judy Garland worship – 3
Dungy’s quote did not get past sports commentator and arbiter of all-things politically correct Keith Olbermann, who promptly labelled him “The Worst Person in the World“. I’m not a close follower of Mr. Olbermann. I’m hoping that he names a new worst person in the world every week or two and this is not a one-time thing. While Dungy’s comment could certainly be construed as prejudicial, it’s hard to imagine that he beats out Adolf Hitler, Charles Manson or Donald Rumsfeld, just for uttering a few words. In Olbermann’s defense, if he just labelled Dungy a jerk, he wouldn’t have likely gotten much mileage out of it.
Next in line was Tim Wildmon, the CEO of the American Family Association. Wildmon discussed the PC media’s fervor over Dungy’s remark. In addition, Wildmon volunteered that having spent quite a bit of time in locker rooms as a sports reporter himself, he felt that surrounding Michael Sam with all that naked “beefcake” was unfair to the players (Insert cheap “illegal contact”, “holding” or “too many men on the field” penalty joke here). I’m reserving my opinion on anything else Wildmon wrote, and just taking some perverse thrill in his use of the term “beefcake” in discussing naked manly men.
As the keeper of my own blog, I’m entitled to give my two cents on this whole issue. The thought of a gay man being anywhere around the hallowed ground of America’s most prized gladiators is simply too much for many of us to wrap our narrow minds around. Clearly doing elaborate celebratory dances while wearing tight, colorful pants and eye make-up is no place for some kind of Nancy-boy. If openly homosexual men are able to infiltrate the league, it’s only a matter of time before the F in NFL will stand for “Flaming”. Players will start patting one another on the backside, displaying fancy footwork, wearing knee socks and gathering in “huddles” to talk about their plans.
Tony Dungy didn’t really elaborate on the risks of hiring a gay guy to do a straight man’s job. Had he done so, he might have pondered how on earth anyone could expect a homosexual to use a spin move on a tight end while trying to get his hands on the ball. In any case, the deed is done, and Sam is here to stay, at least for now. It’s only a matter of time before homosexual men start showing up in other sports like figure skating and drag racing. At least purists of heterosexuality in professional athletics can take comfort in the lack of any lesbians in women’s sports.