The topic of gay athletes in professional sports has once again picked up steam this week with Colorado tight end Nick Kasa’s revelation that an NFL team asked him if he likes girls at the Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. Teams are known to ask some odd questions while interviewing NFL prospects (See: Bryant, Dez), but many people have argued that questions about a player’s sexual preference are personal and irrelevant.
Former Chicago Bears quarterback Jim Miller feels that the question makes sense, since he believes openly gay players would not be welcome in an NFL locker room.
“There are some religions that are just not going to accept a gay individual in the locker room,” Miller said Tuesday on WSCR-AM 670 in Chicago, via the NY Daily News. “So now, are you as an organization going to bring that element into your locker room and think everything is going to be OK?
“Last time I checked, whether it’s Christianity or Muslims or other religions that are out there, they’re just not going to accept it. They’re just not. It’s just not realistic for…any progressive or liberal to think that everything is going to be OK in the locker room and we should all just wise up and accept it.”
When we hear comments like the ones Chris Culliver made before the Super Bowl. it becomes obvious that not all NFL players would be willing to accept a gay teammate. But blaming religion is a cop-out. Where does that stop? Last time I checked, there are certain religions that do not accept eating pork. Does that mean there are players who would refuse to accept a teammate who eats bacon?
Everyone is entitled to their own religious beliefs, but that doesn’t mean they have an excuse to discriminate against those who don’t share them. Miller is right that many NFL players are not ready to accept a gay teammate. He’s wrong to simply blame it on religion and think everyone should move along.