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View Article  Buh Buh Joey Porter: Gay Bashing Steeler Cut Loose to Free Agency

Sometimes greed can be a dyke's best friend.  In this case, it means Joey Porter will take his trash-talking bigotry and hit the road for greener pastures.  I don't care if he made 879 tackles last year and was Most Valuable Stud three years running or even if he did single-handedly hold back the entire Steeler team so Jerome Bettis could have his moment in the sun ... I don't even care that his team mug shot is plastered all over the city on the anti-homicide billboards urging people to report murders.

I think we're better off without him and his arrogant disrespect for any creature other than himself.  We are not fans of Joey Porter.

This lesbian couldn't be happier. 

h/t Pitt Girl

View Article  The Trib Weighs in on Gay Sheep and Tim Hardaway

Local opinion seems to be that our own con-alternative paper, the Tribune Review, is pretty anti-gay.  The fact, however, is that most of their gay coverage has been consistent with mainstream thought on gays -- we aren't so bad after all, its not such a big deal, don't we have better things to worry about (usually the libertarian columnists), and an abhorence of violence against gays.  Its a benign quasi-tolerance that keeps us fimly in our second-class seats, but protects us (mostly) from being bashed by pipe wielding maniacs.  They may not want their sons to be gay, but it would be okay if their daughters have a quirky gay confidante. Who could ask for anything more than that?  (I'm being ironic here b/c a 72 year old harmless man was killed by a pipe wielding maniac in spite of the fuzzy Will and Gracism pervading pop culture).

Two Trib columnists have tackled gay stories of late.  In an interesting display of better late than never, Matt Sober weighs in on the Tim Hardaway furor.  Sober went to Penn State with John Amaechi, the former NBA player who recently came out.  Sober recalls Amaechi as a very bright guy who probably appreciates the tough conversations his coming out have inspired throughout the sports world.  Then Sober takes an interesting twist:

And the lesson here is that declaring you hate gay people is just as silly as, well, declaring you love gay people.

Either way, the implication is that it's possible to know an individual based on some larger group identification.

Gay. Black. Immigrant.

Pitt grad.

Saying you hate gay people is silly -- that's the teachable moment Sober draws from all this?  Huh.  Declaring you love gay people is silly?  Its unfortunate that Sober opted for a jab at Pitt fans in lieu of actually saying something meaningful about the pervasion of homophobia in the sports world.  Its great that he's a fan of John Amaechi, but he trips right over his blase attitude into the treacherous world of "let's pretend there are no difference and see everyone as the same." 

Columnist Tom Purcell uses gay sheep experimentation to underscore the collapse of civilization.  Not because of gay sheep, but because of America's obsession with gay sheep and Anna Nicole Smith.  Some researchers were exploring the sexuality of sheep.  Hue and cry ensued about the ethics of such research, bringing the attention of such entities as PETA and Martina Navritalova.  Purcell takes the obligatory "nutty advocacy group" shot at PETA, dismisses any possibility that genetic research on sexual orientation could possibly be used against gays and then wraps up his analysis with this overreaching comparison:

Evil dictators are stifling freedom and torturing millions. Ethnic hatred and genocide are killing millions. Pestilence and disease are killing millions more. But we're more attuned to things that don't matter, such as "American Idol."

And we're at war. Western civilization is in a battle of wills with fanatics who hope to restore 6th century values. They intend to get their hands on some frighteningly powerful bombs to make us bend to that will.

I'm sorry, Tom, but in a nation that has collectively handed over our welfare to a despotic idiot, I'm feeling pretty good when groups like PETA bring our attention to potential landmines.  Especially when I look at your previous columns which don't seem to focus on evil dictators, torture or genocide.  But they do feature a lot of italicized words and exclamation points.  Its practically the same thing.

So more gay-benign pablum from the Tribune-Review.

View Article  How Long Until Hardaway Ends Up In Rehab?

"I don't hate gay people," [Tim] Hardaway said. "I'm a goodhearted person. I interact with people all the time. ... I respect people. For me to say 'hate' was a bad word, and I didn't mean to use it."

That's apology-take two.  He didn't mean to hate on us.  And he's surprised at the reaction --- as if he had killed somebody.  He even lost an endorsement. 

How much you willing to wager that he ends up in "rehab" like Isaiah Washington, Mel Gibson and Michael Richards?

View Article  PG Editors: Hardaway 'Profoundly Ignorant Millionaire Athlete'

The PG editors chime in on Tim Hardaway's banishment from the NBA All-Star weekend in response to his "I hate gay people" comments.

Former Orlando Heat basketball star Tim Hardaway showed just how profoundly ignorant a millionaire athlete can be and still tie his own shoes in the morning.

That's a great line.

View Article  "I hate gay people" comment giving homophobes a black eye

This is just too delicious.  The Concerned Women for America are taking former NBA player Tim Harding to task for his recent homophobic rant.  The CWA fears that Harding's blatant bigotry will taint the anti-gay movement.  Or something like that.  Just check this out:

"Hardaway?s comments are both unfortunate and inappropriate,? said Matt Barber, CWA?s Policy Director for Cultural Issues. ?They provide political fodder for those who wish to paint all opposition to the homosexual lifestyle as being rooted in ?hate.? It?s important to note that Hardaway?s words represent the feelings of Hardaway. His words do not represent the feelings of the vast majority of people opposed to the homosexual agenda.

?It?s perfectly natural for people to be repelled by disordered sexual behaviors that are both unnatural, and immoral,? said Barber. ?All too often those behaviors are accompanied by serious physical, emotional, and spiritual pitfalls. However, the appropriate reaction is to respond with words and acts of love, not words of hate. Jesus Christ offers forgiveness and freedom for all sinners, and that is the heart of the Gospel message.

?Thousands of former homosexuals have been freed from the homosexual lifestyle through acts of love. Hardaway?s comments only serve to foment misperceptions of widespread homosexual ?victimhood? which the homosexual lobby has craftily manufactured.?

I can't make this shit up.

This is the kind of Christian-flavored bigotry that makes me puke.  As I was trying to explain to H's Mom in an earlier post, hate is a slippery slope.  H's Mom and her fear of lesbian-association for her daughter might seem a far cry from "I hate gay people," but if you interject the intermediary step described above ... its not so crazy a leap is it?

View Article  PG Letter to the Editor on Rene Portland

From today's Sports Mailbag, Harriet L. Schwartz of Squirrel Hill:

Penn State coach Rene Portland is an adult working on a college campus who has created a hostile and intimidating environment for students. As a university educator, she has harassed students, and continues to get away with it. As a longtime educator, I cannot comprehend that a university administration would allow this to continue.

Well put, Harriet.

View Article  PG Sports Guy Jerry Micco Represents Well on Gay Issues

There is nothing earthshattering in the Valentine's Day PG chat transcript featuring Jerry Micco.  He simply makes a few comments about Penn State retaining Rene Portland as their women's basketball coach and former NBA player John Amaechi's coming out.  What's interesting is the opportunity for the rest of us to note that while there is a long way to go, the sports world is not entirely filled with homophobic bigots. 

Sometimes we need to stop and pay attention to these moments, particularly when most of the attention is focused on the stupidity of bigots like former NBA star Tim Hardaway who has recently claimed that he hates gay people. Duly noted Tim.  Thanks for laying your ignorance right out there on the line and getting yourself banished from the NBA All-Star Weekend.  Now if the NBA were to put a little more attention on the bigots who aren't so brazen ...

Back to Micco.  Here's his perspective on Amaechi:

dt: What are your thoughts on Jon Amechi coming out of the closet?

Jerry Micco: Combination of courage and the fact that he wants to sell some books. He wasn't a superstar by any stretch, so the book on its merits doesn't garner much interest until Amaechi says publicly he's gay. Then it's covered heavily by all media. That said, I hope the day comes soon when people don't have to hide this type of thing. I know it's probably not going to happen, but you'd like to think people are tolerant enough to accept folks as they are and judge them on how they treat others and how they do their job on the court, field, etc.

The snark about selling books is most likely not unwarranted.  But consider the two standards he lays out ... how they treat others and how they do their job on the court.  How they treat others comes first.  Consider the implications for Pittsburgh's homegrown football thug Joey Porter who recently used gay slurs.  How is that for treatin' people?  In fact, here's an entire list of anti-gay slurs made by professional athletes.  I'm sure quite a few have good Christian mamas who make them chunky soup every weekend, but they don't treat people so good do they?

Micco also express incredulity over Penn State's retention of Rene Portland:

Ralph: Why does Rene Portland still have a job at Penn State?

Jerry Micco: I'm not sure, Ralph. I really can't answer that question because it mystifies me, too. And it's not like there aren't likely candidates out there that would be great for that job (read: Suzie McConnell Serio), so PSU would not have a tough time filling the post. I'm stunned with all that's surrounded Portland that the University just doesn't cut its ties. Again, rather mystifying to me.

There may be great replacements, but Portland is still a winner.  So why toss her out just for being a homophobe and violating University policy when you can't guarantee a winning replacement?  Its not like Portland offended the base or anything. 

FYI, Suzie McConnell Serio is not exactly rah-rah lesbian material herself.  She's on the record as defining sexual orientation as a "choice" but acknowledging that her player's personal lives are personal.

I suppose that's progress.  It will be nice when more heterosexuals can lay off the uneasy little jabs when discussing homosexuality -- we get that you aren't gay and we certainly get that you aren't comfortable discussing it.  Let's play ball.

View Article  First Openly Gay NBA Player On Tour for Human Rights Campaign, Not Coming to Pittsburgh


John Amaechi, once a star player for the Orlando Magic, is the first NBA player to ever publicly come out as a gay man. Now retired from basketball, Amaechi's unique story is detailed in his autobiography,  Man in the Middle just released by ESPN Books.

Now, Amaechi is an official spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign's Coming Out Project, a program designed to help gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people come out and live openly.

Amaechi is launching a nationwide tour to share his story and encourage conversation about gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender equality.


Kudos to John who, sadly, will not be bringing his tour to Pittsburgh.  He will be in Philly on March 10.  Other stops include DC, Atlanta, Dallas and New York. 


I think a few appearances in Ohio, Nebraska, Missouri and North Dakota might reach people who are alienated a bit more than say in DC which has a thriving gay community.  But that's just me.  We have no basketball team here so I guess we're off the radar.  However, that also means we are off the hook for providing yet another new sports venue so perhaps its a wash. 

View Article  Gene Collier on gays in sports

In today's Post-Gazette, the inimitable Gene Collier takes a shot at figuring at the implication of Penn State's homoconnection to basketball.  Actually, he contrasts the settlement of Jennifer Harris' lawsuit citing PSU coach Rene Portland's homobigotry with the coming out of former PSU bball player John Amaechi.

Let me summarize  - the fact that Amaechi is a gay basketball player should not be a bigger story than the fact the Rene Portland won't let lesbian basketball players on her team. 

"There's this huge assumption that all women athletes are lesbian, while the exact opposite is true of men -- that, if you're an athlete, you couldn't possibly be gay," Heather Barber was saying on the phone yesterday from the University of New Hampshire. "The assumptions are dramatically different, but the way they play out may not be."

Heather studies these things.  That's good to know because I cannot begin to fathom the impact of homophobia in the athletic realm. 

So Jennifer Harris settled and got her little lump settlement.  Rene got a slap on the hand. 

What have the rest of us gained from this sordid little situation? 

View Article  PG Reader: Tony Norman Right About Minority Homophobia

Ray McGogney of Shaler on homophobia in minority communities:

One can spout anti-gay epithets with impunity and cloak the bigotry in religious and moral overtones.


Unfortunately, too few leaders are willing to risk offending their ethnic or religious base by taking a stand against homophobia.

Ray writes in response to Tony Norman's recent column on the furor around an African-American actor's usage of the term "faggot" to describe a fellow (gay) actor.  You may have heard something about it. 

A perfect example is Superbowl bound coach of the Indianapolis Colts, Tony Dungy, who is accepting honors from anti-gay Indiana Family Institute.  This is the local affiliate of big Daddy Jimmy Dobson and his merry band of Focus on the Family bigots.  This group makes no bones about their opposition to homosexuality, period.  We are diseased beings who need to be cured and kept away from the children. 

There's no discernible homophobic reason for Dungy to ally himself with this organization, according to OutSports.  Dugy isn't on the record as being openly anti-gay, but he is very clear about being a Biblically based Christian. 

"Whenever I'm asked to talk about it I make sure people understand my affiliation as a Christian, that I follow Christ and Christ's teachings according to the Bible," Dungy said in 2002.

Uh oh.  Those are ominous words for us homos. 

We can infer all we want, but my real point is that Dungy is using his good name to raise money for a group that wants to strip homosexuals of our civil rights in the name of religion. 

Here's the take from an Indiana LGBT blogger, Bilerico:

But Tony's prominent appearance before this group, as a representative of a major sports institution in Indianapolis, sends a chilling message. All of us shared the grief that Tony and his family experienced a year ago when his son took his own life. I understand that stories about a connection to sexual orientation were unfounded, and I would defend Tony's right to consider that a private matter. Still, there is an irony many of us in the LGBT community know well: The number of LGBT youth who have taken their lives because of self-hatred and homophobia is much above the national average. Organizations of the IFI variety cannot escape the fruits of their helping to foster the myths and resulting bigotry which contribute to those grim statistics. Surely Tony doesn't in any way support that; so why is he lending his celebrity and role model status to such a group?

Point well made.  It doesn't look good so I'll be cheering for Chicago. 

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