Jason Collins becomes first active professional athlete to announce he is gay

Jonathan Daniel

A landmark moment in sports and American culture took place today as Jason Collins became the first active professional athlete in a major American team sport to reveal that he is gay. This is a testament to Collins' courage and the more accepting, tolerant and open-minded nature of today's society.

Jason Collins made the announcement in a Sports Illustrated story, which can be found online here, where he details his experience as it has led to this watershed day.

"I'm a 34-year-old NBA center. I'm black. And I'm gay," said Collins.

"I didn't set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I'm happy to start the conversation. I wish I wasn't the kid in the classroom raising his hand and saying, "I'm different." If I had my way, someone else would have already done this. Nobody has, which is why I'm raising my hand."

I, for one, think it's about time. Jason Collins, brother of former Sun and future ring of honor inductee Jarron Collins, should be applauded for his decision. I have both friends and family members that are in same sex relationships. Their sexuality in no way affects my relationship with any of them. It never even enters the discussion.

People are sure to have different opinions and leanings on a topic like this, but I am a proponent of people being able to live their lives how they would like to as long as they aren't impinging on the rights of others. Hopefully this helps pave the way for other athletes, and people in general, to live their lives without the fear of being eschewed or shunned.

Change often doesn't happen without resistance or controversy, but today... change happened.

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