LGBT Equality in Sports.
LGBT Equality in Sports: Efforts to make sports a safe, inclusive, and respectful experience for athletes and coaches of all sexual orientations and gender identities/expressions span 35 years of individual acts of courage, as well as organizational projects focused on diversity and inclusion.
The silence and terror typical of the sport experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) athletes and coaches in the 1970s and earlier stands in sharp contrast to the burgeoning LGBT sports equality movement of today.
The dedication of LGBT sports advocates and allies to changing the climate in one of the last bastions of homophobia and transphobia lays the foundation for a more inclusive future in sport. I believe it is important to understand and appreciate the history of any social justice movement of which we are a part.
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LGBT athletes. However, we still have much work to do. Let us get to that work mindful of the complexities. And challenges of making sure that all voices are heard and all experiences are included.
Martina Navratilova once said, “If it’s the last two minutes of the championship game and the score is tied. You don’t care if your teammate is black or white, gay or straight, Jew or Christian. You just want her (or him) to make the shot.”
Now that’s a sports ideal to strive for: A day when you are judged by your contribution to the team. And valued for the diversity of experience and identity you bring to enrich the sporting experience for all.
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