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Planetman 04-29-2013 10:26 AM

NFT: Jason Collins is teh ghey


Why NBA center Jason Collins is coming out now

By Jason Collins with Franz Lidz

This story appears in the May 6, 2013, issue of Sports Illustrated.

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.

My journey of self-discovery and self-acknowledgement began in my hometown of Los Angeles and has taken me through two state high school championships, the NCAA Final Four and the Elite Eight, and nine playoffs in 12 NBA seasons.

I've played for six pro teams and have appeared in two NBA Finals. Ever heard of a parlor game called Three Degrees of Jason Collins? If you're in the league, and I haven't been your teammate, I surely have been one of your teammates' teammates. Or one of your teammates' teammates' teammates.

Now I'm a free agent, literally and figuratively. I've reached that enviable state in life in which I can do pretty much what I want. And what I want is to continue to play basketball. I still love the game, and I still have something to offer. My coaches and teammates recognize that. At the same time, I want to be genuine and authentic and truthful.

Why am I coming out now? Well, I started thinking about this in 2011 during the NBA player lockout. I'm a creature of routine. When the regular season ends I immediately dedicate myself to getting game ready for the opener of the next campaign in the fall. But the lockout wreaked havoc on my habits and forced me to confront who I really am and what I really want. With the season delayed, I trained and worked out. But I lacked the distraction that basketball had always provided.

The first relative I came out to was my aunt Teri, a superior court judge in San Francisco. Her reaction surprised me. "I've known you were gay for years," she said. From that moment on I was comfortable in my own skin. In her presence I ignored my censor button for the first time. She gave me support. The relief I felt was a sweet release. Imagine you're in the oven, baking. Some of us know and accept our sexuality right away and some need more time to cook. I should know -- I baked for 33 years.

When I was younger I dated women. I even got engaged. I thought I had to live a certain way. I thought I needed to marry a woman and raise kids with her. I kept telling myself the sky was red, but I always knew it was blue.

I realized I needed to go public when Joe Kennedy, my old roommate at Stanford and now a Massachusetts congressman, told me he had just marched in Boston's 2012 Gay Pride Parade. I'm seldom jealous of others, but hearing what Joe had done filled me with envy. I was proud of him for participating but angry that as a closeted gay man I couldn't even cheer my straight friend on as a spectator. If I'd been questioned, I would have concocted half truths. What a shame to have to lie at a celebration of pride. I want to do the right thing and not hide anymore. I want to march for tolerance, acceptance and understanding. I want to take a stand and say, "Me, too."

Phobia 04-29-2013 10:30 AM

He probably got hacked.

Prison Bitch 04-29-2013 10:34 AM

Not a very brave person. Waits until his 34 and a free agent currently out of the league, probably not ever to play again. Not sure why this is news, he's not really an "NBA player". He's a formber player. And that's the point of this coming-out stuff. Has to be someone with something to lose, else it's not bravery.

loochy 04-29-2013 10:45 AM


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Chief_For_Life58 04-29-2013 10:50 AM

thats ghey

loochy 04-29-2013 10:56 AM

Hey guys -

I'm a 31-year-old systems engineer. I'm white. And I'm straight.

Chief_For_Life58 04-29-2013 11:05 AM


Originally Posted by loochy (Post 9643650)
Hey guys -

I'm a 31-year-old systems engineer. I'm white. And I'm straight.

Yayyy im so happy for you!!!! Lets tell everybody!!!!!

loochy 04-29-2013 11:08 AM


Originally Posted by Chief_For_Life58 (Post 9643662)
Yayyy im so happy for you!!!! Lets tell everybody!!!!!

Do you want to march in my parade? If I throw a parade it will send the message that I want to be a normal part of society.

Alex Smith 4Ever 04-29-2013 11:08 AM

Luke Walton and Richard Jefferson already came out as gay

loochy 04-29-2013 11:09 AM


Originally Posted by Alex Smith 4Ever (Post 9643670)
Luke Walton and Richard Jefferson already came out as gay

as did alex smith

OmahaChief 04-29-2013 11:09 AM

Oddly enough both Kwame Harris and this guy played at Stanford.

AndChiefs 04-29-2013 11:10 AM


tooge 04-29-2013 11:11 AM

Is it just me, or are there an unproportionatly high number of NBA players named Jason?

Alex Smith 4Ever 04-29-2013 11:19 AM


Originally Posted by loochy (Post 9643672)
as did alex smith

Alex Smith has the best looking wife in the NFL and he runs the best charity in all of sports

blaise 04-29-2013 11:21 AM

I keep hearing media acting like this is earth shattering, while the public seems to be pretty apathetic.

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