Christine Quinn hails Jason Collins’ ‘bravery and honesty’ in coming out

Jason Collins came out as gay in the latest Sports Illustrated. Credit" Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images.
Jason Collins came out as gay in the latest Sports Illustrated. Credit” Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn praised basketball star Jason Collins for opening up about his sexuality. Collins is the first major male athlete to come out as gay.

In his coming-out statement in an upcoming issue of Sports Illustrated, Collins says, “I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black. And I’m gay.”

Quinn, an openly gay public figure herself, said Collins’ decision will “literally… save lives.”

“It takes a great deal of courage to be who you are, and it is not easy to come out of the closet on any day, in any profession,” Quinn noted. “And we know that professional sports have never been a particularly welcoming place to the LGBT community.”

The first female professional athlete came out 32 years ago.

Tennis players Martina Navratilova and Billie Jean King both came out in 1981. Navratilova was a seven-time Women’s Tennis Association player of the year, and King won 12 Grand Slam titles.

Most recently, basketball player Brittney Griner, the number one WNBA draft pick this year, came out a few weeks ago. She has also signed an endorsement deal with Nike.

In an interview about two weeks ago, Griner recounted how she was bullied as a child.

“It was hard, just being picked on for being different, just being bigger, my sexuality, everything. I overcame it and got over it,” she said, noting that it’s “definitely something [she is] very passionate about.”

“I want to work with kids and bring recognition to the problem, especially with the LGBT community,” she added.

Quinn anticipates that Collins’ coming out will help LGBT youth as well.

“There will be a day soon when a young boy or young girl is sitting watching the NBA finals or the Super Bowl or the World Series,” Quinn said. “ANd there on the screen will be an openly gay athlete. And that little boy, maybe he thinks he’s gay or maybe he knows he’s fay, and maybe he sat all alone in his room with that.”

“But there will be that athlete on TV, proving to the world that stereotypes don’t matter, but showing others who you are and being true to yourself does.”

While many expressed appreciation and support for Collins after his coming-out, Miami Dolphins receiver Mike Wallace reportedly tweeted: “All these beautiful women in the world and guys wanna mess with other guys SMH…”

He followed up that tweet with: “I’m not bashing anybody don’t have anything against anyone I just don’t understand it.”

He later deleted those tweets and apologized: “Never said anything was right or wrong I just said I don’t understand!! Deeply sorry for anyone that I offended.”

 

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Many deaths as boat with African emigrants sinks…

BENGHAZI Libya (Reuters) - A boat packed with up to 250 African emigrants trying to reach European shores sank on Sunday off the Libyan coast…

Local

State health department warns against rare respiratory virus…

The New York State Department of Health is calling upon parents to be aware of the symptoms of enterovirus EV-D68. More than 12 children across the…

National

Liberal Vermont Senator Sanders may seek U.S. presidency…

By Will DunhamWASHINGTON (Reuters) - Bernie Sanders, one of the Senate's leading liberals, said on Sunday he is thinking about running for U.S. president in…

Money

Second Shift: Turning fun into money

In this week's Second Shift series, meet a New Yorker who has established two successful careers around having fun.

Movies

Dan Stevens kisses Cousin Matthew goodbye

Dan Stevens wanted a change and he certainly got one. After quickly developing a devoted fan base as Matthew Crawley on "Downton Abbey," the 32-year-old…

Movies

Nerd alert: Genesis Rodriguez, robot-maker

Geeks of the world, you're about to fall in love with Genesis Rodriguez. There's no point in resisting. The actress, appearing in Kevin Smith's totally…

The Word

The Word: Kanye West wants everyone on their…

Maybe we can blame this one on the migraine, too. Kanye West is drawing ire for halting a performance in Sydney when his demands that…

Movies

That's a wrap on TIFF 2014

This year's Toronto International Film Festival closes without the satisfying sense of certainty that had become a mainstay in recent years. Last year, for example,…

NFL

3 things we learned in Jets loss to…

The wheels came off for the Jets, who gave up 21 unanswered points after a brilliant first 20 minutes in a 31-24 loss at the Packers.

NFL

Victor Cruz catches case of the drops in…

The Giants dropped a tough, 25-14, decision to the undermanned Cardinals Sunday in their home opener. And drop was the operative word of the day,…

NFL

Giants vs. Cardinals: 3 things we learned

The Giants heard all week about how ragged their new offense has looked, but even when they finally answered the bell they still can’t find a way to win.

NFL

About a quarter of football players will get…

About one in four National Football League players are likely to end up suffering cognitive impairments during their lifetime, according to a report.

Home

DIY design: Try this upcycle furniture project

Tiffany Threadgould is living a DIY life. The Chief Design Junkie at TerraCycle, an international waste management company headquartered in Trenton, New Jersey, grew up…

Parenting

The downside of a BFF

For teenage girls a best friend can mean everything, but the way they deal with their problems together can lead to depression

Education

How many colleges should I apply to? Your…

To the average high school senior, creating the perfect college application can seem like a golden ticket into their future. Students and their parents spend…

Career

How Generation Z will change the way Americans…

What to learn how to establish a career in this new economy? Look no further than the current generation of young people - that is,…