A week after a prominent NFL offensive player exercised his right to express disagreement with same-sex marriage, another prominent NFL offensive player has publicly declared that he would welcome a gay teammate.
“I hope if someone’s thinking about [coming out], that if they do come out as gay and it makes them happy and it makes their life easier, then I think they should do it,” Colts quarterback Andrew Luck told CNN, via theindychannel.com. “My first reaction is really good for him. . . .
“It’s the 21st century, and I know I would have absolutely no problem with it. I hope no one would treat him any differently than any straight player, no special treatment — he’s just another guy.”
The problem remains that coming out makes a player who is “just another guy” into something more than that. As we’ve said repeatedly (and as NBA player Jason Collins explained when he came out), players don’t want to create distractions for the team.
The problem is that, to get to the point where being openly gay isn’t a distraction, someone needs to be the one who eases us all into the hot tub of water. It will only cease to be a big deal after someone does it, the media saturates the story (like it did with Jason Collins), and then we all realize that the world is still spinning while rotating around a giant ball of perpetually burning gas.
That’s where nature and choice collide. Players are who they are. Whether they choose to conceal it or to acknowledge it is up to them. Eventually, someone will choose to acknowledge it, even if his motives eventually are scrutinized by those who think that he should keep his sexuality to himself.
Either way, here’s hoping that no one is pressured into remaining closeted, or alternatively into coming out in order to satisfy someone else’s agenda.