The St. Louis Rams made history last week when they drafted University of Missouri standout Michael Sam as the 249th pick in the 7th round.
Before the draft, Sam was the first openly gay football player who was set to play on the professional level. His draft selection makes him the first openly gay NFL player.
The selection was a good one for both Sam and the Rams. Sam, the SEC co-defensive player of the year, will compete for a linebacker/defensive end spot on the Rams’ roster. He’ll likely see a lot of time on special teams. For Sam, it’s a great situation. Rams and Missouri football fans already know about his social life and it will likely help him focus more on football and likely slow down the media circus’ coverage. The problem is that the media can’t help themselves. In a story that had enough steam by itself, ESPN added fuel to the fire by showing Sam kiss his boyfriend Vito Cammisano. They carried the kiss live and it was replayed several more times on the network the same day. While I personally didn’t want to watch the two men kiss, I also don’t care to watch any of the draftees kiss their significant others after being drafted.
A lot of the negative comments on the internet sites were rather ugly. I may not agree with Sam’s lifestyle, but he shouldn’t be treated any differently than any body else.
With that same mindset, a group of people who once claimed that nobody tolerated their opinion, is now themselves not showing any tolerance to those who disagree with them.
Miami Dolphins player Don Jones instantly tweeted the words “OMG” and “horrible” in reaction to the kiss. This is his opinion whether you agree with it or not. This resulted in him being fined an undisclosed amount and him needing to make a public apology denouncing his own comments.
In the same week, Jason and David Benham lost their jobs when the Home and Garden Television (HGTV) network canceled their new show due to their Christian beliefs on issues like gay marriage and abortion.
“We love all people. I love homosexuals,” David Benham said in a recent interview. “I love Islam, Muslims, and my brother and I would never discriminate. Never have we — never would we.
Never have I ever spoken against homosexuals, as individuals, and gone against them. I speak about an agenda. And that’s really what the point of this is — is that there is an agenda that is seeking to silence the voices of men and women of faith.” David Benham brings up a good point here and echoes my feelings on the issue.
Just because one might disgree with the homosexual lifestyle, it doesn’t mean a person doesn’t love homosexuals.
Unfortunately, having a different opinion is in essence becoming hate speech anymore.
The Benham’s, Don Jones, Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson, The Bachelor star Juan Pablo Galavais, and the list goes on. More and more of those in the public eye are sharing their opinions, which in many cases is based on their religious beliefs. These same people are facing difficulty with their jobs and are given no freedom to have their own opinion. For years, those who disagreed with the lifestyle were considered intolerant. Times have changed. Now those who want their voice heard are not tolerating those with opposite opinions. No matter what side of the aisle you’re on, we should all respect our freedom of speech. It seems like today’s world is wanting to dictate otherwise.