"I don't do the gay guys man, I don't do that. No, we don't got no gay people on the team, they gotta get up out of here if they do. Can’t be with that sweet stuff. Nah…can't be…in the locker room man. Nah."
To most people, the comments made by San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver were shocking and offensive. But to a certain segment of the population, the anti-gay narrative isn’t shocking at all.
Since the comments came to light, I have heard several pundits from the sports world say that Culliver didn’t know what he was asked. C'mon now. He knew. Making excuses will not help this young man realize the gravity of what he said.
Let’s be real here. The general consensus among African-Americans is that they want nothing to do with the gay community. There is a strong dislike there. A dislike that no one really wants to discuss.
Someone might say how does a person who comes from a community that has a history a being persecuted would say such things? You can find the answer to that on Sundays. The things that Culliver said are the same things that are said at churches in the African-American community every Sunday. Church-going African-Americans are taught from day one that homosexuality is a sin. There are two bible passages that most African-Americans who are religious point to as proof that homosexuality is a sin:
“Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is an abomination.”-Leviticus 18:22
“If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.”-Leviticus 20:13
Those two passages are all they need to know to interpret that being gay is wrong somehow.
Have you ever noticed that there are virtually no non-profit organizations that cater to homosexuals on the South and Westside’s of the city?? That’s by design. I grew up in South Shore, nearby one of the oldest gay bars in the city. Word on the street was to “stay away because fags hangout there.”
Case in point, when I was in college, I went to a Southern Baptist Church service. During the service, the pastor asked the congregation to pray for a family that found their son was gay. The pastor said:
“We have to pray for them because XXXX is gay. We have to lead him to the back to the right way.”
I hope the pastor knows that the person he was praying for probably doesn’t want to go back to the “right way.”
When I get into debates with friends who quote the aforementioned bible passages, I like to remind them about a passage from the book of Timothy:
“For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving.” -Timothy 4:4
Remember how President Obama personally supported gay marriage but politically he stayed above the fray for as long as he could? This was why he waited so long.
Chris Culliver was right about one thing: A gay teammate would not be welcome in an NFL locker room. A lot of people in the sports world have not turned that corner yet. Athletes who have come out after their playing days have said as much.
I believe that Chris Culliver needs to look at the world around him. Things have definitely changed. Like him, I was young and felt the same way he did. I grew up. I realized that I wanted to be treated with respect just like everyone else. Hopefully, he will see that.