I had ESPN2 on in the background yesterday while I was writing and part of the show SportsNation caught my attention. If you are unfamiliar with the show, I can not say you are missing anything. It is a short attention span mash up of interviews, highlights, bloopers, trivia and fan polls that is the by product of needing to fill multiple channels of airtime with cheap original programming. The show appears to have a target audience of sub 70 IQ sports fans suffering from ADHD and alcoholism.
Anyway, the show seems to have a habit of inviting celebrities with very little connection with sports onto the show, and it was one of these clips that showed why it isn’t really a surprise that professional sports is one of the last places where homophobia is accepted to a certain extent. I can not find a clip from this show, but it is from the May 23rd episode of Sportsnation, while special guest Tyrese (who I guess is a R&B singer and actor) was appearing. Transcript is from Ark TV, and is accurate at least in regards to this clip. Tyrese’s comments are bolded:
The suggestion implied by the comments was very clear watching the clip. Guys screaming for Tyrese, especially if they had what he considered a feminine sounding voice, make him uncomfortable because there is something wrong with men being attracted to him.
Yes, it is a throw away comment on a throw away show. But it is also casual homophobia airing on a sports show. Is it any wonder it took until this year for an active male professional athlete to come out of the closet?