Friday, December 2, 2011

Good News From Major League Baseball (And The National Football League)

This is very good news.

Article XV, Section A of MLB’s expiring Basic Agreement, in effect from 2006-2011, states: “The provisions of this Agreement shall be applied to all Players covered by this Agreement without regard to race, color, religion or national origin.”

In the new agreement, the words “sexual orientation” were added to Article XV. Michael Weiner, the union’s executive director, said that the decision was not motivated by requests from his membership, but by “the lawyers on both sides just recognizing that it should be there.”

On the we-still-have-a-long-way-to-go side, there's the rookie relief pitcher hazing-by-wearing-pink going on in Major League Baseball, and some players on the Mets saying privately in the aftermath of the legalization of gay marriage in New York that they would be uncomfortable with an out gay player on their team.

“Most of us are still Neanderthals,” one Met explained.

And on the other, we're-making-progress side, other Mets players said they would be comfortable with an out gay player on their team.  A number of the teams have created "It Gets Better" videos and are recognizing their GLBTQ fans. Add to that the whole league has now added sexual orientation to their non-discrimination clause and it really is a huge step forward. The article also says that

The National Football League also included “sexual orientation” in its CBA [Collective Bargaining Agreement] this year.

So while Billy Bean, featured in the article's photo, came out as gay after he retired from baseball, and we still don't have an out gay player - this is one more important step towards queer equality and making our world a better place.

And that gives me hope that one day - hopefully soon - we'll get there. These sports will include gender identity protection as well, and we'll have our queer Jackie Robinson moment.

And I'll be there, cheering them on.



Avi de Turenne said...

One of the last bastions of homophobia. Yet I heard from time to time that every clubhouse in every sport has at least one or two gay athletes that everyone knows about and no one talks about.

Ironically there's a ton of male bonding behavior that borders on homo-erotic in the locker-room and on the field that's considered pure as long as it's not interpreted as "gay".

Billy Bean's (not the "MONEYBALL" Billy Bean) book GOING THE OTHER WAY was an eye-opening look behind the dugout.

Sarah Stevenson said...

I had to look it up to be sure it wasn't the other Billy Beane! :)