When it comes to gay athletes, the door has been slow to open. Gay people are everywhere and in every industry, even the US military, but a gay, active professional athlete? Not exactly a trail that’s been blazed. Until now, that is. Jason Collins, a 12-year NBA veteran, is the first professional basketball player to come out as gay.
“I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black. And I’m gay. I didn’t set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I’m happy to start the conversation. I wish I wasn’t the kid in the classroom raising his hand and saying, “I’m different.” If I had my way, someone else would have already done this. Nobody has, which is why I’m raising my hand.”
There have been other gay athletes, but unlike Robbie Rogers, Collins has no plans on retiring. Indeed, he’s looking for a little work. Collins, all 7 feet tall and 250 pounds of him, is currently seeking a teem for his 13th NBA season. I have no doubt he’ll find it, despite his relatively advanced age for a professional basketball player. His twin brother, Jarron Collins, retired from the NBA in 2011.
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