After being an outspoken proponent of gay marriage, and having a Maryland politician try to squelch his opinion, no one was happier to see voters in his state approve a measure that made it legal this week.
“I’m so stoked,” Ayanbadejo said, via Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun. “It’s like I woke up and it was Christmas.”
“It’s something I’ve been so passionate about for a long time,” Ayanbadejo added. “Even though it doesn’t affect me directly, it affects a lot of my friends. It affects my family. It affects Ravens’ fans. It affects Marylanders. I’ve worked hard on it very diligently.
“I’ve been torn down at times, but lifted up many more than the ones that tore me down. I’m very proud of the Marylanders who went out there and voted and made the difference.”
Ayanbadejo admitted his stance wasn’t necessarily popular in his own locker room (teammate Matt Birk was outspoken for the other side), but hasn’t been swayed by pressure to step aside from a controversial issue.
“For it to be passed in four states, marriage equality, there are some guys that are really upset with marriage equality in the locker room,” Ayanbadejo said. “I think at the end of the day I think the majority of the guys, whether you call it a civil union, or whatever you call it, just to be recognized in the state and have the same rights as heterosexual couples, that’s all you can ask for. I’m happy about it. . . .
“Guys give me flak every day, they make fun of me in meetings, but, at the end of the day, the majority of them know it’s the right thing to treat people equally.”
It’s a novel concept, but whatever your stance, you have to respect Ayanbadejo’s advocacy.