Tuesday, April 16, 2013
NFL, MLB may find ending sexual orientation discrimination in sports challenging, but they say they want to
Frank Bruni has an interesting perspective on gay athletes on p. A25 of the New York Tines today (Tuesday), “The Locker and the Closet”, link here.
As with the arguments used for years against “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” for the military, comparisons of the ending of racial apartheid in pro sports (as in the movie “42” – April 12 on the Movies blog) to acceptance of opening gay players in the NFL, NBA or MLB seem too facile.
Bruni, toward the end of the article, reports that NFL scouts are still “asking” and that some players feel that “coming out” would be a “selfish act”, against the interests of the “team”. (Somehow, that comment reminds me of a particular episode of Donald Trump’s “The Apprentice”). The NFL and MLB, at least, have been reported to be trying to ban the practice of screening for sexual orientation.
MLB could have it a little easier because in baseball, comparatively speaking, the individual matters more. There is sacrifice, to be sure (the bunt), but physical contact is less. Individual skills at just overcoming Newtonian physics (in pitching and batting) seem to matter more. Maybe relativity matters, though. The observer affects the performance of the subject.