Billy Bean Baseball
One of the first…Glenn Burke was the first…major league baseball players to come out was Billy Bean. He came out after he retired in 1999 because of the stress associated with being in a major league sport as a closeted gay. It was recently announced that Bean will act as the league’s first Ambassador for Inclusion. I’ve been following him for years and I’ve always been a respectful fan. He was a role model for gay men long before gay role models became popular.
Bean, 50, played for the San Diego Padres and the Los Angeles Dodgers and came out as openly gay in 1999 – several years after he had retired from the game prematurely because of the stress of playing in the closet.
‘I wish that our game had someone in place to whom Billy and Glenn could have turned when they played; a friend, listener, a source of support,’ MLB Commissioner Bug Selig said.
Bean will provide guidance and training related to efforts to support those in the LGBT community throughout the organization including both major and minor league clubs.
You can read the rest here. I’m hoping this encourages other gay men in major league sports to feel free to come out. But they are making it clear this is not a means of pressure that will force guys to come out. We all know that could be dangerous in spite of that hideous national holiday called National Coming Out Day. We should all do that on our own terms, not due to pressure…or because we’re told it’s the thing to do.
Anna Paquin Backlash
When Anna Paquin of True Blood came out as a bisexual she claims she wasn’t surprised at the backlash she received from people who hate the LGBTI community. It sounds as if she expected it.
‘There’s people who are probably going to go to their grave thinking whatever they think about the LGBT community – that’s their problem, not mine. ‘I know there are a lot of hateful people in the world who have strong opinions.
You know when you stick your neck out on certain topics that some people are going to go “Yay!” and some people are going to say some of the most vile things that you can imagine.’
I think we all know what she’s talking about in that respect. Maybe not on such a grand scale. But we’ve all experienced that form of hate in our lives. It’s the main reason why I can’t have an open comment thread and I have to moderate everything here on this blog. I tried it for about six months and just didn’t want to expose my blog readers to that kind of hate. I still get the anon hate comments and I read them all alone. I don’t really mind anymore. It is what it is. But I don’t want readers to have to see that.
HIV Poz and Dating
This article talks about the difficulties all gay men face dating these days, and gets into detail about the challenges of dating when you are HIV positive.
But sometimes I don’t know how they come up with some of this stuff. Like this, for example:
It is one thing to admit that you are open to finding love. It is quite another to constantly be wondering why you don’t have a boyfriend. Before you can find the right man to bake cookies with and watch romantic comedies on a rainy Sunday afternoon, it takes realizing that you are better off alone than trapped in a relationship with Mr. Wrong… or Mr. Right Now.
I’ll watch romantic movies, but you won’t get Tony to watch one. Neither one of us bakes cookies. We don’t even eat cookies. If and when we do we buy them at a bakery. My point is that this paragraph creates a hugely unrealistic concept of a gay relationship and I think part of the problems younger gay men have is they don’t always have realistic expectations. If you’re looking for a girlfriend to watch romantic movies with that’s easy to find. Getting a real man to build a life with is a completely different matter.
However, the article does redeem itself here:
Address your internal HIV stigma before your next date, because your inner bad ass deserves better than your outer coward making excuses for something you cannot change. HIV isn’t a character flaw, it is a reality that someone either understands or they do not. Hoping and praying that someone will overlook your reality is a desperate move, especially when you don’t even know theirs.
I like the last sentence the most. You can read more here.
Naked Couples LA
This link talks about dating and revealing things, too. But in a different way. I don’t have to elaborate on this one.
All we do know is that a bunch of couples of all shapes and sizes, same-sex and opposite-sex, apparently got naked and took downtown Los Angeles by storm.
According to a press release sent to The Huffington Post, the video was inspired by VH1’s new series “Dating Naked,” which “explores the question: would finding love be easier if you truly had nothing to hide?”
There’s more here, with a video. I like the diversity.