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“It Gets Better” Sounds Weird Coming From Major League Teams With No Out Players

The Boston Red Sox just made an It Gets Better video. Awesome. No really, that’s awesome. Our community and queer youth need all the support they can get. There’s even a player in this video who says he got therapy to come to terms with who he is. But he doesn’t say that he’s gay. Then it hit me—no one in the pro-sports world has publicly come out as gay. So isn’t a weird when all these pro athletes tell queer kids it’s OK to be who they are when none of them are willing to do it themselves?

By:           Daniel Villarreal
On:           Jul 1, 2011
Tagged: , ,

  • 49 Comments
    • Cam
      Cam

      Hey, baby steps, good for the Red Socks. Be nice though when some sports reporter will have to report on a wedding between a Red Socks and a Yankee player. ;)

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:11 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealMannequinAdam
      TheRealMannequinAdam

      It really is so ridiculous that straight people even make these videos, let alone major league sports teams. What do they know about it getting better? Being gay doesn’t affect them.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:20 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Atlas
      Atlas

      Stop being bitter bitches to allies.

      Go Red Sox!

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:37 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ashlee Edwards
      Ashlee Edwards

      Why is it weird? Maybe the team doesn’t have any gay players? Maybe they’re just straight people who are sensitive to the cause? What is weird about that? Don’t call it weird if straight, but not narrow, people join the conversation letting people know that it gets better. Should this message come from gay people ONLY? WTF people. AND, there are professional athletes that are out. What, Steve Nash doesn’t count as a gay professional athlete?

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:37 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam
      Cam

      @TheRealMannequinAdam:

      No, but often times they are the ones who can create the atmosphere that torments gay kids…or makes it easier for them. If sports teams like this are letting younger kids know that they don’t hate “The Gays” it’s one less thing pushing little kids to pick on others.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:38 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Truthful
      Truthful

      man, daniel… you are probably a bossy bottom. so many standards, who would even wanna fuck you?

      kudos to the red sox that appear in this video – glad to have you guys as allies

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:40 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ashlee Edwards
      Ashlee Edwards

      @TheRealMannequinAdam: I really hope you’re being sarcastic. As a lesbian, I hate narrow minded queers who think that straight people can’t possibly be sensitive to our cause. Homosexual men and women, as well as, young boys and girls watch and look up to these players. Is it so wrong for them to say that they understand and to share the message that it gets better?

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:41 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Daniel Villarreal
      Daniel Villarreal

      @Ashlee Edwards: Post a link of any story confirming that Steve Nash has come out of the closet and I’ll eat my words. But until then, I stand by them.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:42 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Always be bitching (but lose all credibility)
      Always be bitching (but lose all credibility)

      You just cannot stop bitching, can you? About anything. Nothing is ever, ever good enough.

      Here’s the thing about that strategy: it rightly destroys your credibility. If others know nothing’s ever going to be good enough for you, they’ll stop trying to do anything for you. And you will have gotten exactly what you deserve.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 11:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jeffree
      Jeffree

      There’s no harm done with a sports team making a IGB video, but let’s not pretend they’re in the same league as some of the straight celebs (Cyndi Lauper, for one) who’ve been vocal allies for a long time, or the out sports figures (US, overseas) who’ve added their voices & stories too.

      We live in a country where people are obsessed with sports, so a Queer teen may get some encouragement from seeing some of their heroes saying something positive.

      I just hope that kid also watches some of the other vids from people who are actually out, & who’ve done more IRL than just a video.

      And anything that takes counter-balances Tyree’s recent stream of nonsense, well that’s good.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 12:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ashlee Edwards
      Ashlee Edwards [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @Daniel Villarreal: Nevermind. I misread a story and am now eating my words about him. Still don’t understand why people being sensitive to our cause is weird.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 12:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • christopher di spirito
      christopher di spirito

      High Five Red Socks!

      Jul 1, 2011 at 12:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • lizcivious
      lizcivious

      I believe the Red Sox player in the video is Kevin Youkilis (I’ve never really seen him up close and speaking, and there are a zillion ballplayers that look just like him). As far as I know, he’s not in the closet, but he has had to undergo anger-management therapy for pummeling his wife. So,he must have learned some tolerance lessons during his stint in anger-management. Let’s hope he’s sincere.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 12:13 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Steve
      Steve

      Sure it might be weird, but its the natural progression of things. If major league teams start making statements like these in support of their LGBT fans, then they also start to change the climate of professional sports (and by extension, other areas that exercise homophobia) which would make LGBT players feel more comfortable about coming out.

      Although, I would like to say that there are several retired sportsmen who have come out, but none active.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 12:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      I can see Yankees fans chanting “It Gets Better” to Bosox fans.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 12:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JJ
      JJ

      Ugh. Daniel is as awful as ever. I bet if one did come out of the closet you would be talking about how they need to do more. You are so bitter. I think it is his favorite past time to attack allies and be counterproductive. Loser.

      As for the video, it is well done and a wonderful thing for these men to do. It helps create a more welcoming attitude in the league for fans and players alike. That attitude shift will hopefully encourage players to come out in the future.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 12:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealMannequinAdam
      TheRealMannequinAdam

      @Cam: If they are creating this atmosphere then they need to be the ones to take responsibility for their hostile environment, not pat gay kids on the head and telling them to stick it out when gay kids are suffering from the culture that they themselves create and refuse to challenge.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 1:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Daniel Villarreal
      Daniel Villarreal

      @JJ: You love reading me. Otherwise you wouldn’t get to vent about how awesome I am and no one would know just how awesome you are.

      Glad you’re a reader!

      Jul 1, 2011 at 1:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealMannequinAdam
      TheRealMannequinAdam

      @Ashlee Edwards: I wasn’t being sarcastic.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 1:04 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealMannequinAdam
      TheRealMannequinAdam

      @Always be bitching (but lose all credibility): They aren’t really doing anything if the homophobia of the sports worlds doesn’t change and they aren’t acknowledging it to begin with, and gay players continue to live in secrecy and fear.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 1:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jim Hlavac
      Jim Hlavac

      They’ll be coming out soon enough — let our allies be our allies — and for all we know there are no gay baseball players. After all, gay leagues are all softball, not hardball. But there are certainly pro-sports players who have gay siblings and possibly gay kids, and they want it better for them. Take what help where we can get it, and let things get better. And I wouldn’t begrudge a sports star in his prime from staying closeted — he might well lose his job, and his millions – would anyone of us take that risk? And how many other millions of gay men not in sports are still closeted. Take the help, let the individuals deal with in their own sweet time.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 1:20 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Riker
      Riker

      I’m sure there *are* gay Red Sox players. I know for a fact that there are lots of gays who work for the Red Sox organization, from ticket-takers to management.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 1:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jeffree
      Jeffree

      @TRMAdam (#20): @Jim Hlavac (#22): Points well made. That homophobia in the majors will not change until some whizz in the minors comes out first & gets judged on how well he plays, not who he sexes around with.

      Then he or the next one or the next survivor of that experience will make it into the big leagues.

      That may take awhile. All we have now are Olympians & sportscasters.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 1:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael
      Michael

      OMG Daniel, can you please STFU??? You are giving the LGBT community a very, very crap name. EVERY SINGLE TIME anyone who is straight comes out publicly for gay rights you have to find some bullshite aspect to bitch about it.

      You are perhaps the most annoying gay man I have ever come into contact with. It must be a real bitch having to be around you in real time.

      I think I speak for the majority of the gay community when I say, “Thank you Red Socks!”

      Jul 1, 2011 at 3:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealMannequinAdam
      TheRealMannequinAdam

      @Michael: You haven’t “come in contact” with Daniel; you don’t even know him outside of his posts. So, stop attacking him. He isn’t giving the LGBT community a crap name any more than people like you make us look like desperate cunts for straight approval.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 3:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • christopher di spirito
      christopher di spirito

      @lizcivious: Kevin Youkilis? He’s fine. Thanks.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 3:46 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealMannequinAdam
      TheRealMannequinAdam

      @lizcivious: It’s just like a breeder to try to pummel someone and get violent. And here we are to believe that they are sincere in telling us “IGB.” Nonsense.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 3:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      Short answer: Yes, it is strange.

      Longer answer: Gays are desperate for anyone who will look in our direction with a smile. So we take whatever we can get even if it is strange.

      Its like the unpopular high school girl when the drunk jock looks our way. “Oh, my gawd is he looking at me.”

      Little do we know he’s teamed up with the popular kids to pour pig’s blood on us.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 4:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Danielle
      Danielle

      There are so many things wrong and condescending about Dan Savage’s “campaign”. I could really care less if a bunch of homophobic baseball players make a video for it.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 4:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Daniel Villarreal
      Daniel Villarreal

      @Michael: Dear Mr. Allen,

      You dare accuse me of “giving the LGBT community a very, very crap name” with a Facebook photo collection like yours? Tsk, tsk… for shame.

      Please keep coming back to read us,
      Daniel

      PS. I like the raccoon make-up. It’s very Empire of the Sun.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 4:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mike
      Mike

      I like Daniel Villarreal. He’s catty (in the fun-it’s-not-happening-to-me way). I won’t be giving him a dirty look, lol! :)

      Jul 1, 2011 at 5:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Danielle: A-yup.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 6:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • christopher di spirito
      christopher di spirito

      @Danielle: And you happen to know for a fact that the Boston Red Sox are homophobic how exactly? Do you know the team personally? Or, is it because they’re men who play professional sports so you’re making mindless assumptions?

      Jul 1, 2011 at 6:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jason
      jason

      I’m personally sick of all these supposedly pro-gay people on TV and in sports who periodically talk about the importance of tolerance and acceptance and, yet, refuse to accept themselves and come out. Like the typical liberal, they’re all talk, no action. As far as I’m concerned, if they don’t have the courage to come out, they are pointless as spokespeople.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 7:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sebizzar
      Sebizzar

      @jason: I’m tired of fake people doing it too, but it’s not pointless because it does give more support for us & against homophobiba, regardless if they mean it or not.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 7:46 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael
      Michael

      @TheRealMannequinAdam: Piss off. I know Daniel well enough to know he’s a whiny, little bitch.

      As for our desperate need for acceptance… WTF is that all about? We have many in the straight community trying to help solve the suicide rate of LGBT youth and you’re calling that some desperate need for acceptance. That’s f’n pathetic.

      Take yours and Daniel’s heads out of your ass before you even attempt to engage me.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 7:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael
      Michael

      @Daniel Villarreal: You don’t even have a clue to what you’re talking about. Look, I know you’ve never been thought of anything besides one very bitter and one very jaded homosexual but get a clue.

      It is beyond pathetic how you take ANYTHING positive people are trying to do for our community and turn it into the most asinine bitchfest.

      As for my pictures, that’s a laugh and a half. Anytime you want to compare the positive influence we’ve had over the people around us I’m more than happy to show you a thing or two.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 8:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael
      Michael

      Danielle, by the way, you’re not the quickest whiner, are you?

      So… Before the last few postings 90% of the postings were “Daniel needs to stop bitching so much” but for the last few postings it’s been 100% pro-Daniel.

      I have a feeling you don’t have a clue to numbers and how they work but that is statistically impossible for the postings to go from 90% “get over it” to 100% “way to go” without you exerting absolute control over what’s happening.

      Look, I like Queerty. I like being able to get my mix of entertainment and news however I am over you finding the most asinine things to bitch about. God could come out with a huge green neon sign that says “GAYS ARE OK” and the ONLY thing you’d find to write about is how green is obviously not a gay enough color.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 8:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealMannequinAdam
      TheRealMannequinAdam

      @Michael: Bitch, I’m not “engaging” with you, since I only engage with people who are on my level. What I AM doing is TELLING you to STFU and quit talking to Daniel like that because you DO NOT know him and are no place to tell him how to post. He’s just as entitled to his opinion as you are, and if you don’t like the way he perceives these topics then take your straight-groveling ass somewhere else, or just avoid his posts.

      Jul 1, 2011 at 10:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael
      Michael [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @Daniel Villarreal:

      What does Michaels facebook pictures have to do with anything?

      He seems to me to be an intelligent man who makes a lot of very valid points to me.

      If we start bashing and attacking our allies then they will eventually become the exact opposite to our community: an enemy.

      I think its absolutely beautiful what these people are doing they are giving so much hope to those people who feel unloved unwanted and unappreciated and letting them know that they ARE loved they are wanted they are appreciated and they DO belong in this world.

      These people genuinely love and care about us and do not want any harm to come to any of us.They are giving hope to so many including me and I know in my heart that these videos continue to save young lives and give them hope for a better tommorrow to give them the confidence encouragement and support to be proud of what they are who they and to love themselves because they are loved by others.

      I do not think of these people as just allies I think of them as something more then that.They are not just allies to me they are also…. friends .

      Jul 1, 2011 at 10:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • bluechip244
      bluechip244

      These kind of articles really piss me off. It’s great that professional athletes make these messages, but there is always a dodo who questions whether what is done is enough. Personally, if I read this story, I would say … well, you wouldn’t want to hear what I would say!

      Jul 2, 2011 at 10:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Simon
      Simon

      To this statement: “no one in the pro-sports world has publicly come out as gay”, i would like to make a correction of sorts, because someone is out and is in the pro-sports world.
      Gareth Thomas, is a big time rugby player in the UK and is indeed out. Although i do agree that one in thousands might not mean much, it is a start. And everything has to start somewhere.

      Jul 3, 2011 at 10:50 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Simon: @Simon: the general American public does not watch UK rugby. The conversation is bout US sports and specifically those still playing the game in the prime of their careers. There just are no examples of an active American athlete who is big in his career. As bad as Hollywood is, even it has more representation of out actors than any sports event has of an out athlete. Its a shame really. Apparently, there are some out there if you read up on sports, but they won’t come out because of their fear of homophobia in their sport.

      Jul 3, 2011 at 2:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      By homophobia in the sports, I am not even sure its team members as much as it is definitely fans who see sports as their way to prove how “manly” they are. So gays being involved brings up a whole range of issues. That some how being gay isn’t manly is just one. If gays come out, prove they are just as good at the sport as straight men are, then one of the last bastions of “manhood” will have in the minds of the fan been lost. I have talked to guys like that. “How could you have played high school foot ball, you are gay?” Type of questions.

      Jul 3, 2011 at 2:56 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • John
      John

      I messed around with a very handsome, former big name baseball star and he had lots of trouble allowing himself to enjoy the m2m sex he craved. In the end a disappointing experience even though he was gorgeous and hung. He preferred trannies since they looked less like men but still had a dick. He said the teams were very homophobic.

      Jul 3, 2011 at 5:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ganondorf
      Ganondorf

      @John:

      Yeah, John Rocker gives a professional grade blowie. No gag reflex, boundless enthusiasm. Though I disagree with your assessment that he’s at all handsome.

      Jul 3, 2011 at 6:14 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Simon
      Simon

      @Interesting:
      Indeed, i do understand that most of the American public of whom are sports fans, do not watch UK rugby, as it might be that most of the UK public probably does not watch traditionally American sports.
      However, my comment was just a retort to the generalised term of ‘pro-sports world’ that did not specify to American sports. That being said, i agree with you very much,that the sports arena world wide, needs to be more pro-active on the issue.

      Jul 4, 2011 at 11:32 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Daniel Villarreal
      Daniel Villarreal

      @Michael: Hey Michael,

      I apologize for the Facenook knock. It was a dick move, but only slightly moreso than you calling me the “most annoying gay man I have ever come into contact with” People disagree with what I write, I get that. But there’s no need for either one of us to resort to personal attacks. I withstand them every day— it gets old and does nothing to change my point of view.

      If you look over my work write about 10 to 15 articles a day for Queerty, you’ll see that some of them mock our enemies and others praise our allies. Queerty also prides itself on its counter-intuitive observations and fostering discussion by challenging our readers presumptions. So every now and then, I’ll try to make readers empathize with our enemies and question our allies—because writing “Yay! Allies!” and “Boo! Enemies!” all the time quickly gets boring.

      Yeah, I’ve unfairly knocked Miley Cyrus and not given our other allies enough props in the past, I’ll own up to that. But I disagree when you and others say that my raising observations and questions around our allies’ actions constitutes “bashing our allies” or me being “a whiny, little bitch.” I didn’t say that the Red Sox video was worthless. In fact, in every IGB video article I’ve written, I’ve started by saying how important it is to have each and every one. Then I ask other questions to bring up issues of trans-phobia, social privelege, and in this case, the pro sports closet.

      If you disagree with my work, Michael, I’d rather you tell me what you think I should be doing to examine the issue beyond “Yay! Allies!” and “Boo! Enemies!” rather than resort to insulting personal attacks. If you wish to see changes in my writing, engage me at an intellectual level where I might incorporate your stance into my own writing rather than make an enemy out of someone who might actually agree with you.

      I invite your discussion.

      Sincerely,
      Daniel Villarreal

      Day Editor of Queerty.com

      Jul 4, 2011 at 3:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael
      Michael [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @Daniel Villarreal:

      It takes a big man to even apologize about anything in this world.I really respect what you wrote intelligent kind and rational.You seem like a nice person to me we all make mistakes also people who possess humility compassion and heart will understand that. Im not the Michael you were responding to either but I deeply respected what you wrote either way.

      Jul 4, 2011 at 6:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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