Sometimes the backlash to a news story interests me more than the story does.
Veteran NBA journeyman Jason Collins coming out as the first active player in the NBA is a big deal. It’s not a new deal. Women have come out for years in tennis and basketball, but this is a man’s world so apparently nothing means anything until a guy does it first.
Collins has bounced around the NBA with six teams and the kindest thing you can say about his game is he’s tall and far from a prime-time player. As a NBA insider, Chris Broussard is a prominent figure in ESPN’s army of experts. During a discussion on Outside the Lines with LZ Granderson, a fellow ESPN contributor and former Journalist of the Year as named by the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association, Broussard showed another side of himself; a devout Christian who condemns homosexuals for “openly living in unrepentant sin.”
“I’m a Christian. I don’t agree with homosexuality. I think it’s a sin, as I think all sex outside of marriage between a man and a woman is. L.Z. knows that. He and I have played on basketball teams together for several years. We’ve gone out, had lunch together, we’ve had good conversations, good laughs together. He knows where I stand and I know where he stands. I don’t criticize him, he doesn’t criticize me, and call me a bigot, call me ignorant, call me intolerant.
“In talking to some people around the league, there’s a lot Christians in the NBA and just because they disagree with that lifestyle, they don’t want to be called bigoted and intolerant and things like that. That’s what LZ was getting at. Just like I may tolerate someone whose lifestyle I disagree with, he can tolerate my beliefs. He disagrees with my beliefs and my lifestyle but true tolerance and acceptance is being able to handle that as mature adults and not criticize each other and call each other names.
“… Personally, I don’t believe that you can live an openly homosexual lifestyle or an opnely premarital sex between heterosexuals, if you’re openly living that type of lifestyle, then the Bible says you know them by their fruits, it says that’s a sin. If you’re openly living in unrepentant sin, whatever it may be, not just homosexuality, adultery, fornication, premarital sex between heterosexuals, whatever it may be, I believe that’s walking in open rebellion to God and to Jesus Christ. I would not characterize that person as a Christian because I do not think the Bible would characterize them as a Christian.”
– Chris Broussard, ESPN, 4/29/2013
Throwing in premarital sex between heterosexuals with an “openly homosexual lifestyle” is a slick bit of false equivalency by Broussard but I don’t see him criticizing an “openly HETEROsexual lifestyle. ” Not everybody believes in the Bible, Jesus Christ or God and their lack of belief deserves the same tolerance as Broussard’s devout Christian beliefs.
The capper is this bit of smug intolerance by Broussard, “So I would not characterize that person as a Christian, because I don’t think the Bible would characterize them as a Christian.”
Religious Theory 101 taught by Professor Broussard will be beginning in 10 minutes class, so please take your seats!
It’s good Broussard can contain his disgust with Granderson’s sexual orientation long enough to play a pick-up game of basketball and swallow a sandwich afterwards without gagging on it, but he’s still playing the “love the sinner, hate the sin” card. How’s that shake out for the millions of other gays who Broussard doesn’t break bread with? To me it sounds like some of that bigotry, ignorance and intolerance Broussard doesn’t want to be associated with, but pointedly perpetuates is kicking in.
Broussard could have–SHOULD have–said he had “no comment” and kept his religious dogma to himself. Instead he chose to cast the first stone.
He can’t complain now when he gets stones flying back in return.
We’re all entitled to our opinions and they can be as strong as vinegar, but when we put those opinions out there on Front Street, we’re RESPONSIBLE for what we say and write. Broussard is an employee of ESPN and if they choose to defend or suspend him that’s their call. There will be consequences either way. But when you go on national TV saying things about homosexuals that Broussard did, you aren’t going to win that fight. Homophobia is indefensible and even when presented as “God’s will” it remains so.
If Broussard is so religious, how does he square the NBA playing games on Sunday, the Lord’s Day? Doesn’t the Bible frown on tattoos? If it does LeBron James is going to hell. I look forward to Broussard’s future expose of NBA Baby Daddy drama caused from all the horny heterosexuals spreading their seed in the wombs of willing women across America
That should be upcoming sometime soon. Like NEVER. Thou shalt not infringe upon the prerogative of straight men to screw around.
The beliefs of Christians should be respected, but their faith does not trump another human being’s rights to live and love how they choose. Aren’t there enough dire emergencies for people of religious faith to worry about than what consenting adults do?
I no more want a “gay agenda” intruding upon my life than I do a “Christian agenda.” This is an excellent opportunity for people to mind their own business. They should take it.
Let Jason Collins live his life. You don’t have to applaud his decision to come out but to stand in judgment of it risks your own moral standing as your own sheets may not be as spotless as you imagine them to be. The end of the world has been prophesied since the first man looked up at the darkening sky in fear until he realized it was only the sun setting and night falling.
One day the world will end. I sincerely doubt its cause will be because two people of the same sex fell in love.
- ESPN’s Chris Broussard: Being Gay is ‘An Open Rebellion to God’ (patheos.com)
- ESPN’s Chris Broussard: If you don’t call me a bigot, I won’t call you a f*ggot, deal? (dickbuttkisssports.com)
- Chris Broussard, On ESPN, Said That Being Gay (And Having Premarital, Heterosexual Sex) Is “An Open Rebellion To God” (sportsgrid.com)