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Adrian Peterson on gay marriage: ‘I’m not with that’

Adrian-Peterson-Wants-to-Play-for-Fantasy-OwnersWhen superstar athletes express their opinions about gay players in sports, the ripple effect occurs almost instantly. Adrian Peterson gave us a perfect example of that last week when he provided his thoughts on gay marriage.

During an interview with Bruce Murray and Amani Toomer on SiriusXM NFL Radio, Peterson discussed his former teammate Chris Kluwe and the way he was such an outspoken advocate of gay rights. While AP said he does not discriminate against anyone because of their sexual preference, he made it clear he does not support gay marriage.

“To each his own,” Peterson said, via NESN.com. “I’m not with it. But I have relatives that are gay. I’m not biased towards them. I still treat them the same. I love ‘em. But again, I’m not with that. That’s not something I believe in. But to each his own.”

While Peterson will certainly deal with a good amount of backlash for not supporting gay marriage, he was simply being honest. Everyone is entitled to their own personal beliefs, whether they stem from religion or elsewhere. It’s how they handle those beliefs in everyday situations that really makes a difference.

Peterson doesn’t have to support gay marriage. Supporting something and tolerating it or being respectful of it are entirely different concepts. It seems to me that Peterson is saying he does not condone gay marriage, but that he would not judge those who do. There’s a fine line there that is easy to cross, but I don’t think he crossed it with the aforementioned comments.

On a separate note, this NHL star still has the best view on gay teammates.

Brittney Griner: Baylor discouraged me from being openly gay

Brittney GrinerBrittney Griner says she was discouraged by her coaches and the Baylor athletic department from being openly gay while in college the past five years.

Griner just completed her senior season in Waco and was selected No. 1 overall by the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury. The former two-time first-team All-American center came out publicly last month, though she says she has been openly gay since high school.

Griner told ESPN The Magazine/espnW that she was discouraged from being open while at Baylor. She says she was told to keep it private because it could damage recruiting.

“It was a recruiting thing,” Griner told ESPN The Magazine and espnW. “The coaches thought that if it seemed like they condoned it, people wouldn’t let their kids come play for Baylor.”

Griner says she told Baylor coach Kim Mulkey up front when she was being recruited that she was gay. She says Mulkey told her that was not an issue. However, she was discouraged from being open about her sexuality.

“It was more of an unwritten law, but come to find out it was a written law. It was kind of one of those things like, ‘just don’t do it.’ They kind of try to make it like, ‘Why put your business out on the street like that?’” Griner told espnW’s Kate Fagan.

Griner says the issue first came up when she tweeted something.

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Adidas pulls Kevin Ware T-shirts

Kevin-Ware-Louisville-shirts

Adidas has stopped selling controversial T-shirts that they began manufacturing following Kevin Ware’s gruesome leg broken leg injury suffered last weekend, USA Today reports.

The shirts were being sold on the Louisville athletic website for $24.99. The shirts said “Rise to the occasion” on the front, and had the number five on the back. Ware’s No. 5 was not only on the back, but it was also in the place of the “S” in rise.

Adidas received plenty of backlash for attempting to profit off a player’s injury while that athlete is unable to receive any of the proceeds due to NCAA rules.

Dan Wetzel at Yahoo! Sports puts that into context of the corrupt NCAA. He also points out that Adidas likely pulled the shirt not because of the moral dilemma, but because it is illegal; schools are not allowed to profit directly off a player, according to NCAA rules.

How do they get away with selling jerseys and shirts with a player’s number? Schools argue that numerous players have worn the number throughout the years.

Ware, meanwhile, has received plenty of support and notoriety since the injury. He received phone calls from Dwight Howard and Charles Barkley among others, and he did the Top 10 on Letterman Thursday.

Kings F Dustin Penner takes shot at athletes who skip White House visit

Dustin-Penner-KingsThe Los Angeles Kings visited the White House on Tuesday to be recognized for their 2011-2012 Stanley Cup title, and by all accounts it appears all members of the team were able to attend. As you know, there is a growing list of athletes — most notably former Boston Bruins goalie Tim Thomas — who, because of personal/political reasons, have refused to travel to the White House with their team to meet the president.

For the most part, there are two sides to the debate. On one side, you have people who feel that athletes are given a forum most of us do not have and that they should use it to stand up for their political beliefs. On the other side, you have people who feel that it is disrespectful to your team and your country to refuse such a rare honor. After Tuesday, we know where Kings forward Dustin Penner stands.

If you ask me, he’s right. Everyone is entitled to their own political opinion, but going to the White House to be recognized for winning a championship does not mean you support the president. It’s a tradition and something that players should experience with their teammates. You can still take a handshake from Barack Obama and vote Republican. In my opinion, athletes should understand that and cast their personal beliefs aside.

Transgender MMA fighter Fallon Fox’s license being reviewed

Fallon FoxFallon Fox is a 37-year-old MMA fighter, and she is facing licensing issues after it was revealed that she is a transsexual woman.

Fox won a featherweight fight last Saturday in Coral Gables, Fla., by first-round knockout (knee). A reporter learned of her transgender secret and called her and one of her trainers about it.

On Monday, SI.com’s Loretta Hunt revealed that Fox is a transsexual woman. She also reported that Fox’s fighting license in Florida is under review.

Fox underwent gender reassignment surgery in 2006. She told OutSports.com that she has been receiving hormonal therapy for 10 years. In a documentary teaser from Out Sports, Fox says she got into MMA after her surgery and began training in the sport. She credits it as a motivation for living.

Fox is 2-0 in her professional career and 3-0 as an amateur, with all of her wins coming in the first round. She is scheduled to fight in April after advancing to the semifinals of the Championship Fighting Alliance tournament, but that plan is currently on hold.

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Ottawa TomaHawks changing team name less than 24 hours after announcing it

Ottawa-Tomahawks-logoThe Ottawa TomaHawks were introduced as the newest member of the National Basketball League on Tuesday, with a new name and logo being unveiled for the city. Before the day was over, the team had already decided a name change was in order.

According to CBC News, the name TomaHawks was met with public outcry from Ottawa’s aboriginal community for being a racist term. Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said he warned the team about its name and advised them to consult with the First Nations community before making the announcement.

“Obviously they did not do the kind of consultation that they should have done, and they certainly spoke with me and spoke with my office before the launch, and I strongly suggested that they have proper consultations with First Nations, and particularly the Algonquins of Ontario,” Watson explained.

Team president Gus Takkale said he is committed to making sure fans know he wants the team to respect the community it represents.

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Torii Hunter says he was misquoted on comments about a gay teammate

Let the damage control begin. Over the weekend, Kevin Baxter of the LA Times published a piece that quoted Detroit Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter as saying he would be uncomfortable with a gay teammate. He said his stance was based on his Christian faith, and as expected Hunter has been getting blasted for his lack of acceptance and beliefs that many feel are outdated.

On Monday, Hunter took to Twitter to try to clarify his stance. He went the old “I was misquoted” route.

“I’m very disappointed in Kevin Baxter’s article in which my quotes and feelings have been misrepresented,” Hunter wrote. “He took two completely separate quotes and made them into one quote that does not express how I feel as a Christian or a human being. I have love and respect for all human beings regardless of race, color or sexual orientation. I am not perfect and try hard to live the best life I can and treat all people with respect. If you know me you know that I am not anti anything and to be portrayed as anti-gay in this article is hurtful and just not true.”

Most athletes like these NFL players have said they would fully accept a gay teammate. Others like Roddy White have made insensitive comments about the gay community, and we see where that leads. Hunter’s comments fall somewhere in the middle. As he has likely learned, the middle is not a place you want to be.

Photo credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE