It’s a big shame that a player is judged more on his sexual orientation than on what his job precisely pays him to do: play football. Former St. Louis Rams player Michael Sam lives under this vicious scrutiny; time and time again, more people build assumptions around him, the anchors being his sexual orientation.
To ESPN, Yahoo, and any other sporting websites whose spiteful comments derive from Sam’s sexual preferences: stop. You are harmfully scrutinizing a man and his opportunities. You are belittling him, the NFL, and fans all around the world. It’s completely insulting and appalling to constantly embellish tails about a man, neglecting the important aspects: his play, his attitude, his aura. These embellished tales may boost ratings, but they harm a man and a respected reputation like the NFL’s.
Falsified speculations swarm Sam, including extensive and overdone reports of his “showering habits”, which ESPN apologized for — as they should have. Or the blatantly absurd, repetitive showing of Sam and his boyfriend crying and kissing when he was drafted. They about handed him more publicity and attention than the first-round picks received. Other news sites constantly toss his name into the headlines — because of his sexual orientation.
There are massive amounts of players — late round picks at that — who cease to make the cut. Where are their constant articles? Where are their major publicity? Where is the redundant coverage and hyped discussion about them? Exactly, the point being an indictment on ESPN and all of these other credible sporting sites.
In sports, people are judged and appreciated for their play — granted, sometimes their personalities and personal lives can nudge their ways in, but generally, a player’s play is his reputation and speaking device. Stats record a player’s play — not his sexual orientation, so why should anyone else engage in such awful acts? It’s downright taunting to assume roles of superiority by putting Sam under this wretched microscope of inequality, constantly examining everything that occurs to him, then pinning it on his sexual orientation. We don’t need extensive documentation of every single occurrence in Sam’s career. Yahoo, ESPN, and various sources tediously follow Sam in ways they fail to with other players. No other seventh round pick is a hot controversy or topic for being cut, so why just Sam? Focus on sports, fellow reporters.
Sam is a football player; there are many out there. All are human beings that live normal, daily lives. Let us not treat them as if they’re beneath anyone or emotionless beings. Let us not judge them or grant them attention and dilemmas based on their sexual preferences. Let us evaluate their play on the field above anything else.
Judge Sam on his play, not his showering habits. Judge Sam on his attitude, not his sexual preference. Judge Sam on his statistics, not his significant other.
Judge sam as a football player.