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Thread: LGBT Athletes and Sport

  1. #1

    Cool LGBT Athletes and Sport

    Hey everyone,
    Just wondering what everyone's take is on LGBT athletes.

    1. I find across most of Canada and the United States the issues with discrimination, hate crimes towards lgbt athletes are still prevelant.

    2. Some say people should just focus on the sport and thats that. I think your personal life and sports are one in the same.

    3. alot of athletes on scholarships keep their sexuality hidden to stay on teams and coaches aswell. More so in the United States.

    4. There is the issue of group/ team dynamics aswell. some say the dynamic either grows because of trust or weakens due to homophobia. ( depends on where you live)

    5. Also its hard for lgbt athletes to identify with regular lgbt groups due to stereotypes, interests and activities not the same or revolving around sports( which many athletes lives do)

    6. Also do you think there are stereotypes that prevent lgbt athletes from coming out, or even continuing participating in sports??

    7. I've seen this as a major issue throughout the U.S and in Canadian clubs its taboo subject where its always shoved under the rug. Just wondering other peoples take on it. There isnt alot of research done on it, I've read all the scholarly texts in my university library. I also find it interesting because there arent really any lectures done on this topic in the physical education department either. When I know there are alot of lgbt people in the department.

    8. I see it in many ways as the last wall in lgbt discrimination and hate crimes. Mainly due to gender stereotypes, sports traditions and the seperated world of sports.

    I'd love to hear your opinions on sports/ gym/ lgbt etc etc..

  2. #2


    Side note: in addition to number 7, the subject is taboo, but homophobic comments are said in my opinion to reinforce gender roles and sport stereotypes.

  3. #3
    .~ *aĉa virino* ~. Array Totenkindly's Avatar
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    I haven't thought much about this particular angle in detail, but what I would wish for is a world where we don't have to talk continuously about LGBT issues because they would have become accepted and treated no differently than being hetero or gender-typical. Where people could talk about their het spouse/SO or their gay spouse/SO and have no one bat an eye or treat them any differently. So Johnny Weir's gay. Big deal. (You know?) Or guys on the football team won't get all weirded out just because so-and-so is gay. Sexual preference is completely unrelated to the sport, so aside from being able to say, "yes, gay people are active within <a certain sport at expert levels>," what's the point of dragging any sort of preference into things?

    I think trans issues in sports are slightly different in terms of natural performance levels, especially if someone is not hormonally adjusted for a lengthy period of time to their self-identified gender, and events that are impacted by the participant's size also would give transpeople an advantage or disadvantage from the normal mean within their self-identified gender. The reality is that events are split up right now by gender because men DO outperform women in some athletic activities (and vice versa) simply due to biological constraints, so it seems fair to say it might be an unequal advantage for transpeople to participate in a particular event. It depends on the event and the person in question.

    I do think it's far easier to come out today, in Western culture, than it has ever been in the past, regardless of one's L, G, B, or T status. Hopefully that will continue to improve until it's about as equitable as being a particular religion or of a particular race and/or cultural heritage.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  4. #4


    In reply to Jennifer:

    - Me too, I wish it was a non issue and non sub category, but this is still a huge issue. People are still getting fired from coaching jobs in the United States for being suspected of being gay and athletes aswell. Yes I think with the similar issues with trans people, it still comes from lack of exposure and presence of lgbt athletes. Trans people I think it does come down to hormone levels pretty much. I find there isnt alot of information of trans athletes ( in the little to none lgbt information).

    - Yeah there were studies more popular i think from the last olympics or world championships due to the sprinter?? South Africa's Caster Semenya. I think she is a hermaphrodite???I could be totally wrong. But I think they did multiple test in hormones etc to see if she qualified in the womens category based on general estrogen and testosterone levels of other female sprinters in her division.

    But yeah totally agree with ya on that.

  5. #5

  6. #6
    Senior Member Array swordpath's Avatar
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    Oct 2007


    Pretty lame that people make a big deal about this stuff. I wouldn't even mention it to your team, just because it's a non-issue, IMO.

  7. #7


    In reply to Ignite:

    really? I find that hard to agree with. I know there are tons of other athletes who would get kicked off their teams for being gay... so i dont see that as a non issue. Its discrimination. There is also alot of teams where they continually say homophobic comments and "jokes" ( which doesnt help the environment) Plus being on a team and spending most of your day with team mates = sharing life details and being able to trust them in any situation. Keeping that part of your life from them is hard to constantly do on a day to day..

    I see what your saying as ... there shouldnt be a need to mention it. I would agree with this if it wasnt an issue.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array swordpath's Avatar
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    Oh, well in the case that you're building close friendships with some of these people sure... but that can be left to personal time, right? If you want to share it with friends whom you trust, by all means, but why declare it to the team entity?

  9. #9


    well in my personal situation- im close with all 28 of my teammates, male and female. We've rowed together for 4 years up to 7 years. also i think them knowing will create less homophobic discussions ( you can say to my face, but i think visibility is educating) and its almost impossible to have personal time completely seperate from rowing time. In rowing too you row with everyone and I personally dont have much to hide.

    - Im wondering do you see this as sharing too much information? Like along the same lines as when people discuss private matters and relationship details?

    - I dont know if thats the view? I could be reading your comment wrong?

    But if so I dont see sexuality as something that needs or should be discussed in private ( in all cases). I can see if you beleive its a non issue, then leave it as a non issue and dont bring it up. But seeing how lgbt is not in the heteronormative day to day , why would I leave it undisclosed when I'm not ashamed and I dont see it as too much information.. its just who I like to date. you know?

    - I think I can see where your coming from, but I think sports teams are like most athletes second families and who doesnt want to build friendships with their team mates and discuss their lives. Otherwise their isnt the most crucial social aspect of sports. Yes sport very game/ rules and physical oriented and is what the specific sport entails. But the social aspect is undeniably a major part of the sport.

    I hope that made sense... and if i misunderstood your comment let me know and sorry if i did.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Array Beargryllz's Avatar
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    Jun 2010


    Haters gonna hate. If not one part of a person's private life, then another, for haters will always hate.

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