Ex-Brewers Pitcher Mark Knudson: Gay Baseball Players Should Stay In The Closet

nfl nba mlbMark Knudson, a former relief pitcher for the Milwaukee Brewers, decided to weigh in on the issue of openly gay professional athletes, with a piece in Mile High Sports.

We have to admit, we haven’t read such a calm and cool explanation of an incredibly stupid opinion in a long time. Seriously, it’s incredible how reasonable Knudson sounds.

Of course he’s going to have feelings of attraction toward a teammate or two. It’s human nature. These are some of the most physically fit and desirable human beings on the planet

Initially, Knudson recalls Esera Tuaolo, the NFL player who came out after leaving the game. Apparently Knudson, who played a completely different sport, is intimately familiar with Tuaolo’s experiences with the NFL—enough so that he can affirm he was never discriminated against:

Maybe I missed something, but I’ve yet to hear about any athlete being denied any opportunity based on his or her sexual orientation. Discrimination is wrong, and most of us believe gay people should have every right afforded every straight person.

No one has said that gays should not be allowed to play in the NFL. What has been said is that having a gay teammate would make some players uncomfortable. That’s about their feelings. Feelings aren’t right or wrong; they’re just feelings. It’s telling someone their feelings are wrong that’s the real wrong.

But Knudson really gets going when he explains why it’s so hard for pro athletes to accept a gay player, and why we probably shouldn’t ask them to:

In a normal work environment, people are individuals with jobs. In pro sports, it’s all about as George Karl puts it, “teamness.” Individualism and personal agendas might be okay in a normal workplace, but it’s not okay in team sports. Teamness is what fans demand from the teams they pay to watch. Any individual with an agenda that’s even slightly different from that of the team hurts that cause.

Just as absurd as comparing workplace environments is the ridiculous claim by some in the gay community that there wouldn’t be any sort of physical attraction for a gay athlete toward any of his straight teammates – which would cause those very uncomfortable situations. He’s gay; he’s not dead. He can’t just flip a switch and turn off his feelings when he walks into the locker room.

Of course he’s going to have feelings of attraction toward a teammate or two. It’s human nature. These are some of the most physically fit and desirable human beings on the planet. The gay athlete isn’t going to notice that? And obviously, the straight teammates are going to feel the same sort of vibe that the attractive girl on the co-ed softball team gets from a few of the men on her team. Attractive people know when they’re being “checked out” and it leads to those very awkward moments. It’s human nature for people to be attracted to other people and it’s not going to stop happening because the workplace environment is a locker room rather than a typical office setting.

We should salute Esera Tuaolo and other gay athletes who are able to keep their sexual orientation private during their playing days. It’s got to be very difficult to do, and yet it’s what’s best for the team.mark knudson

So apparently, Major League Baseball is a more intense atmosphere than the U.S. military, which has fairly seamlessly integrated gay and lesbian members?

And if you’re curious, this is what Mark Knudson looked when he was one of the most desirable human beings on the planet.

h/t: USA Today

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  • 2eo

    He looks like someone who interferes sexually with his nieces.

  • 2nd Class Citizen

    Apparently Knutson never heard of the theory that one person’s rights end where another’s begins. So to be fair to all, the “straight” players could not talk about their wives, girlfriends or both, while in the company of any other team mate.
    “Best for the team” or just best for the homophobes like Knutson?

  • Empyrean

    Um, as for the line about “These are some of the most physically fit and desirable human beings on the planet.” Sure, if the planet were inhabited solely by Bowlers!

    I’ll take gymnasts over Baseball players any day of the week!

  • greybat

    “Hey everybody! Don’t look at my butt!”

  • Surg

    Although I disagree with everything this man has to say, I have to acknowledge that he is not as rude as other people, he’s not personally putting people down. In fact he even says ” it’s telling someone their feelings are wrong what’s really wrong” I’m actually ll for opinions different then mine as long as they’re expressed in a no hateful way. As for me, well the player is gay before and after he comes out, if he has feeling for someone, he’s going to have them before and after, how will that change the team? It won’t. He can get over it because he’s crushing on a straight guy either way its the hardest gays like us have to go thru. Basically if he didn’t try to fuck a teammate before why would he after? And when he says that it’s the same as working in an office environment, that’s wrong. Sports teams, just like at my school, develop very close emotional bonds, it hard to crush on someone that you see as your brother. Take that piece of information from the gay guy who’s been surrounded by fit guys in speedos for the past two years in swim. Not once has liking one of them crossed my mind, and they know that so it’s not a problem.

  • spanprof

    He looks dumb. That would end it for me.

  • 2eo

    @Surg: Bigotry through gritted teeth is still bigotry. Those god lunatics who offer to pray for you, still as fucked up as those c*nts from Westboro.

  • hf2hvit

    Because straight men are NEVER sexually attracted to other men…well, maybe those married ones who love dick…

  • 1EqualityUSA

    He has put a lot of thought into this dynamic…a lot of thought….so many thoughts.

  • niles

    Attention Heterosexual Men: You do not own the locker room. You share it with all kinds of men and always have. Yes, we should all respect each other. P.S.: we have already seen your junk. Frankly, it’s nothing to write home about.

  • 1EqualityUSA

    I wouldn’t want to know him.

  • Bumper

    To me, there seems to be more physically fit gay men than in any other group of people in the world. Including athletes (which bare an unusually high number of gay men). This dude looks as if he starred in the episode of “My name is Earl”. Bloated ego.

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