It's been a gay month of May for the sports world. New York Rangers enforcer Sean Avery came out in support of same sex marriage in a Human Rights Campaign ad. Phoenix Suns' President Rick Welts came out. Period. But for gay kids in America, it doesn't get much better than an entire team of baseball players coming together to shoot an It Gets Better video. The San Francisco Giants are making America's game "gay-friendly."
I'm an American League girl all the way, but the Giants just snuck into my heart. The players plans to join a long list of celebs (Lady Gaga, President Obama) who have stood in front of a video camera to tell LGBT kids that life does "get better" in the wake of a host of suicides by frustrated, lonely gay kids. They're not just telling kids that gays exist in the sports world (like Welts). They're telling kids that they can shoot for their dreams -- including a life in the macho mancave that is a baseball clubhouse -- because they'll be accepted.
Give me a minute, and pass the tissues. I'm a bit verklempt!
Story has it the Giants were encouraged to do SOMETHING for the LGBT community after Atlanta Braves Pitching Coach Roger McDowell created a disruption at AT&T park in April, calling two fans "homos" and making obscene gestures in front of families. With an It Gets Better video already in the pipeline -- they are, after all, the team from San Francisco -- SF Weekly reports the organization has simply accelerated its plans.
It would have been nicer if they didn't HAVE TO respond to McDowell's disgusting rant, but whatever the impetus, it's encouraging to see an entire team take the fate of our kids seriously. But I confess I'm loving this even more because it's a baseball team. Touted as America's game, maybe it's just a mark of where I live, but I tend to see more kids being encouraged to "look up to" baseball players than any other sport. There's something so "apple pie, American flag" about the game.
It's time baseball, in particular, acknowledges that the America it plays for includes gays too, and gay kids can grow up to be their favorite Major Leaguers. That said, go Giants!
Are you jazzed to see this video coming up? What team should be next to make an It Gets Better video?
Image via randychiu/Flickr