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Old 04-29-2013, 10:26 AM  
Planetman Planetman is offline
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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."
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:21 AM   #166
Dave Lane Dave Lane is offline
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
Yep, some people are just born with bad wiring.
Well at least you have come to that point of the curve. Grats.
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High Tech is Sorcery and the people who are really powerful are literally telling people to commit crimes using the psychic interspace created by the WWW and Wireless. They are controlling peoples actions like drones . The two things are deeply intertwined. The more man's brain interfaces with machines the creepier it gets. They use brains separate from a human body in a supercomputer and you have The Image of the Beast. The military has been doing this since the 50s
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:22 AM   #167
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Originally Posted by HMc View Post
I am not "attacking" anyone. Quit feeling the oppression. It doesn't exist.
I suppose the irony of this statement is lost on you.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:23 AM   #168
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Originally Posted by Piers Morgan View Post
I love it when dudes play the "persecuted white male angle". It always works out so well for them.
So have you ordered your new Jason Collins jersey yet?
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:23 AM   #169
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
You can't just give a straight answer?

OK, let's forget the word "hate". Does it make it OK to level the same kinds of ridicule and criticism that gays experience toward Obama and Liberals?
FYP now answer your own question.
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High Tech is Sorcery and the people who are really powerful are literally telling people to commit crimes using the psychic interspace created by the WWW and Wireless. They are controlling peoples actions like drones . The two things are deeply intertwined. The more man's brain interfaces with machines the creepier it gets. They use brains separate from a human body in a supercomputer and you have The Image of the Beast. The military has been doing this since the 50s
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:24 AM   #170
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So you don't understand that there are people who believe that God exists but aren't fundamentalist Christians? You aren't aware that this is a thing?
Nah, just find it interesting you believe in a supernatural being that took the form of a man and rose from the dead and performed miracles. It seems like something a person such as yourself wouldn't believe. After all, you just don't strike me as a "fundamentalist".
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:24 AM   #171
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Originally Posted by Piers Morgan View Post
I love it when dudes play the "persecuted white male angle". It always works out so well for them.
Who is doing that?
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:24 AM   #172
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donger View Post
I'm not being contrarian. I'm of the opinion that homosexuals are born that way. Hence, my post above about bad wiring. However, I would argue that they do make a choice when they act upon their desires, just like heterosexuals do.

You disagree?
You've glossed over the leap from "born that way" to "bad wiring", haven't you?

I'd agree to "different wiring". Bad wiring was, and we are both well aware of this, merely low grade trolling on your part. In no way unexpected.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:24 AM   #173
Al Bundy Al Bundy is offline
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Originally Posted by Piers Morgan View Post
I love it when dudes play the "persecuted white male angle". It always works out so well for them.
I actually agree with this.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:25 AM   #174
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Originally Posted by HMc View Post
I am not "attacking" anyone. Quit feeling the oppression. It doesn't exist.
Short memory?

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Originally Posted by HMc View Post
Holy shit there are members of congress who can't get with it and actively campaign for discrimination against gays. They inevitably rush to the bible as the authority for their claims.

Don't act like it's one or two bad seeds that make the christian brotherhood look bad when it comes to not accepting lifestyles that the bible (it seems) condemns.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:26 AM   #175
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[Not in relation to Saul] What's odd to me is that you can believe that a dude rose from the dead (and the rest of that narrative)....but not that people could be born with a primary attraction to the same sex. Because that's just implausible.
Holy shit, that's epically dumb. Why don't you just say that some people are attracted to murdering others, so it should be tolerated. Accepted. Stricken from the 10 Commandments immediately.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:29 AM   #176
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Holy shit, that's epically dumb. Why don't you just say that some people are attracted to murdering others, so it should be tolerated. Accepted. Stricken from the 10 Commandments immediately.
Because murdering infringes on the rights of others....and consensual adult relationships, uh, don't?
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:29 AM   #177
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Originally Posted by Dave Lane View Post
FYP now answer your own question.
Your "fixed" question doesn't make sense in this context. If you'd like to use your own words, I'll try to give you a straight answer.

Obama and liberals are ripe for criticism for reasons that have nothing to do with the difference between nature and nurture.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:30 AM   #178
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
Short memory?
That's an observation and an accurate one. See: Michelle Bachmann.

Only someone desperate to line themselves up as a victim would consider that an "attack".
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:32 AM   #179
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Nah, just find it interesting you believe in a supernatural being that took the form of a man and rose from the dead and performed miracles. It seems like something a person such as yourself wouldn't believe. After all, you just don't strike me as a "fundamentalist".
When did I say I believed that? I said that I believe God exists.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:34 AM   #180
patteeu patteeu is offline
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That's an observation and an accurate one. See: Michelle Bachmann.

Only someone desperate to line themselves up as a victim would consider that an "attack".
It's one thing to single a person out for criticism like you do here with Michelle Bachmann, but it's completely different when you go out of your way to level an attack on a broad group by saying that it's not just one or two bad seeds in a larger group that deserve scorn.

I think it's clearly an "attack" even though I'm not a part of the intended target so it can't be because I'm setting myself up as a victim.
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