My previous blog was so much fun, so why don’t we dive right in and discuss homosexuality once more. Former University of Missouri athlete, Michael Sam, recently announced to the world that he is a homosexual. Supposedly, the highly touted football player told his teammates a year prior about his sexual preference, and there also have been reports that he and his ex-boyfriend used to walk around campus hand in hand. Mr. Sam said he decided to make his declaration at this time because he was concerned that the information would be leaked out before this year’s National Football League draft. I guess he didn’t think his Mizzou teammates, or the whole state of Missouri for that matter, could keep his “secret” any longer.
When an announcement like this is made there’s typically an argument about whether a person should be applauded for “coming out of the closet” or if their sexuality should be kept private. Some even say a person like Michael Sam, conceivably the future’s first openly gay NFL player, is a brave pioneer while others contend trailblazing can only damage a person’s career. I think the intriguing question actually is in regards to the locker room arrangement – more specifically the shower situation. Should straight players be forced into full exposure with Mr. Sam when knowing they are his sexual preference? There probably already are gay men earning a paycheck in the NFL, but unless that information is made public one would most-likely presume otherwise, and men showering together in a team environment would be a non-issue. I believe Michael Sam has forever changed that.
The truth as I know it is there’s no difference between gay and straight men sharing a locker room to that of straight men sharing a facility with straight women. Although the previous statement may sound a bit strange at first the fact is there would be unnecessary sexual tension created in both of those situations. In the same manner, should all the girls around the country who choose to play football or wrestle with the guys in high school and college athletics be forced, or simply even allowed, to shower with their male counterparts? Of course not. However, some might contend there is a difference between adults and underage high school students, but I would say age is not the issue. If one decides to make their sexual orientation public then that is the precise moment when many things change, including the locker room situation, not only for the individual but for everyone associated with that person. The segregation of all sexual identities, in the locker room, seems to be the only common sense solution. Maybe sometimes it’s just better to remain silent.