Note: This article was written and submitted by Matthew Falkenbury and was originally printed on The Daily Stache.
There is nothing wrong, weird, or any other negative adjective you can think of, with being a homosexual.
It is a lifestyle that over the past 20 years has become more accepted in society, and yet still has roadblocks to it being fully accepted.
After the Super Bowl week, where 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver talked about how a gay teammate would not be welcomed in the locker room, I wondered how I or other Mets fans would react if a Mets player was openly gay.
How would you respond if that player was struggling or succeeding on the field? Would you be more cautious to heckle him if he was doing poorly? Would you not cheer him loudly for fear that rooting for a gay man would be looked on by others as a negative?
I guess, my question, beyond the scope of just the Mets and us fans, is would we be willing to accept and support a player on any of our favorite teams if he was openly gay.
At one point in his Hall of Fame career, Mike Piazza was rumored to have been a homosexual. In what is considered one of the strangest press conferences in Mets history, Piazza told the media he was not gay.
Mike Piazza is my all-time favorite player. He is the reason I became a Mets fan. If those rumors had been true, and he was gay, I would not care. What he does off the field is not my concern. I only cared about what he did every night for nine innings or more, trying to help the Mets win a ball game.
Of course, other fans did care and the New York Post most certainly cared as they tried to further the story as much as possible. The headline on the back page that was one of the most famous of them all is the picture you see in this article.
In 2013, the gay community has made so many strides to earn equality in our society. The legalization of gay marriage in many states, including New York, being just one part of the many issues the gay community has seen success on over the years.
Sports is something that has deep roots in being considered a “Mainly Man’s” activity. It is for the strongest of the strong, the most gifted of athletes competing for glory and the next opportunity to cash in when the time is right.
Whether it’s football, basketball, hockey or baseball, we have seen men and women perform to the best of their abilities each and every day to be the best they can be and be remembered for what they did on the playing field.
The sexual orientation that they choose or that they are born with, depending on which side of that argument you fall on, should not be any of our concern. It won’t affect how they perform, train, work at getting better at what they do and it shouldn’t affect their performance on the field, court, ice or diamond.
If the New York Mets had an openly gay player, he should be treated as any of the other players that have put on the uniform before him or after him.
I would accept him because the Mets organization has accepted him. I would cheer for him if he was doing well and boo him if he was doing poorly.
What he does off the field would not enter my mind for a second when it came to determining what he has done well or not well for the Mets.
But, I’m just one fan. The sense I get, and the reason I think that a player in any major U.S. sport has not come out as gay until after his career was over is because his fear of acceptance in our society.
Jackie Robinson took that step into the spotlight for African Americans, Billie Jean King took that step into the spotlight for Women. Will we ever see a current athlete in any of the four major sports do the same for gay men? I think one day we will.
At the end of the day, it should not matter if one of the 2013 or beyond players for the New York Mets was gay. But, sadly, it will matter. It will matter to many people and it will change the perception he has among fans in general.
It will matter but will you accept it if a current Mets player was openly gay? Tell us in the comments section below.