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True Athletic Courage

When I first heard about John Bucigross’s story of Brendan Burke going public with his homosexuality I was quite stunned that someone involved in college sports would dare go public with that knowledge.  When I think about it, it really is kinda depressing that we are stunned and that this needs to be big news.

Here we have a courageous athlete, son of a famous hockey executive, who doesn’t feel as though he can continue his college hockey career because he doesn’t want anyone to find out he is homosexual.  He makes excuses about not getting enough playing time and being discouraged.

The sports world in general is not exactly the most receptive atmosphere for homosexuality.  There is a lot of testosterone and macho-ness, certainly ones sexuality defines a great portion of ones character in this setting.

Brendan Burke was a team manager for his university hockey team.  He is now a gay team manager for his university hockey team.  It is sad to say that Brendan will now be known for not only being Brian Burke’s kid, but also be known as someone who came out of the closet.

It really is no surprise that gay pro and college athletes– and make no mistake about it; there are gay athletes– choose to keep this a secret.  Its not exactly something that people overlook easily.  It just seems so out of place in today’s culture for an athlete to be gay.

I think, because of brave people like Brendan, this will soon change.  I’m not saying every gay athlete will suddenly run out on to the field with a rainbow flag strapped to their back, but I think one day it will be accepted that there is a possibility that your favourite athlete, or a player on your favourite team might be gay….and it won’t matter.

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