I’m not much of a football fan so I’m a few days behind on the ESPN Michael Sam controversy. If you are wondering what I’m talking about, I’m referring to ESPN journalist, Josina Anderson, who reported responses on Sports Center, after she inquired how Michael Sam’s teammates are reacting to having a gay player in their locker room and even more disconcerting – the shower!
This so called ‘controversy’ is reminiscent the dumb comments made by those who were opposed to letting female journalists in team locker rooms after games. Everyone quickly figured out this wasn’t a big deal, and I’m hopeful we’ve now come to the same conclusion about gay athletes in the locker room.
Having athletes like Michael Sam come out at the start of their career rather than after they’ve retired is a significant milestone for the LGBT community. Without a doubt there will be future controversies regarding gay athletes but one expects inane comments from athletes, coaches, owners, etc… who may be uncomfortable with the idea of having a gay teammate – not ESPN or the media.
Blogger, Viv Bernstein, writes a bit more about this controversy and the recent history of the media’s obsession with gay men showering in locker rooms in her post, Michael Sam, The Media and That Shower Question.