There have been a lot of stories recently about professional athletes coming out or thinking about coming out of the closet. Did you know there’s a bunch of straight athletes working to make professional sports more accepting for gay players? The organization is called Athlete Ally.
The only “Athlete Ally Ambassador” in Texas is Chris Seitz, the goal keeper for FC Dallas.
“I think for us to come out and really show some support is really crucial for moving forward,” said Seitz. “We can get more and more people to be themselves and feel comfortable in environments and really make this place a friendly game.”
Athlete Ally ambassadors work to rid sports of homophobia.
“Kind of make it so the atmosphere in the locker room is one that they’ve talked about and one that is now open completely for everyone. We’ve never really have an instance where anyone’s ever come out before,” said Seitz.
The first MLS player to come out of the closet is Robbie Rogers.
“He’s a good, good friend of mine, and someone that our families grew really close together and I’m really happy for him.”
“Definitely caught me by surprise, but, definitely I was happy for him and it’s one of those things… anytime you can let somebody come out and really be who they are, they’re going to be happier and they’re gonna be a lot more energetic and, hopefully, it’s going ot make them a better soccer player as well. He’s a really really good player.”
Seitz says he signed up for the future of professional athletics.
“Getting and reaching the kids that are now growing up and maybe dealing with the same things that he dealt with. It’s to get out there and let them know that he can be himself and people are going to love him for it and people are, it’s not going to change any sort of perception of him,” said Seitz.
“These stories are huge because it’s the first couple of people to do within major sports. Hopefully, down the line, we can get it to where they aren’t stories anymore and it’s just people being who they are.”