Earlier this month, a TMZ employee parroted a broad -- and incredibly annoying -- statement, originating from a 2006 article in The Seattle Times, that 40 percent of people involved with the WNBA (aka staff, players, coaches) are "believed to be lesbians." Now, WNBA legend Lisa Leslie is fighting back. In a good-humored, brief interview with TMZ, she rebuked the "lesbian math miscalculation," stating, "Oh my God! No, they're not! The percentage is not 99 percent. You guys got it wrong over there ... so stop spreading this stereotype!"
Leslie, who TMZ then went on to condescendingly refer to as a "lady basketballer," gave credence to the whole ridiculous debate, stating, "The ratio could be ... 70/30!" Aggghh, Lisa, NO!
Here's the video of the interview with Leslie ...
This whole "debate" or whatever you want to call it makes me gag and want to shake everyone involved, because the backbone of all of it is pure sexism with a cringe-worthy, strong undercurrent of homophobia.
Shame on Lisa Leslie for even addressing the speculation about how many women are lesbians in the WNBA! Doing that only validates the question in the first place, and the bottom line is that it doesn't and SHOULDN'T matter! To say it is a non-issue is an understatement. Debating WNBA players' sexuality is nothing more than a pathetic attempt to undermine their ability as athletes.
It's like this ... can you imagine TMZ or anyone for that matter making a big to-do about what percent of men on the NBA are gay or straight? Of course not, NEVER in a million years!! The above TMZ video of the Leslie interview encapsulates the mindset perfectly, in that it features the clip from The Office where Dwight calls the WNBA "a joke." Yup ... sums it up perfectly! Anyone who would derisively dwell on and "debate" the players' sexuality is clearly a.) threatened by strong female athletes and b.) intent on subverting women who are in a role society seems hell-bent on categorizing as traditionally and perpetually "male." It's all so very sad. When will we finally be able to collectively put our big kid pants on and treat female athletes with the respect they deserve?
Could you see anyone treating male athletes this way?
Image via teamusa.org