Thursday, February 15, 2007

Why Does It Matter?

Tim Hardaway hates gay people and would not have embraced John Amaechi as a teammate. Why does Tim Hardway's opinion about gay people matter AT ALL? Who the hell is Tim Hardaway? The guy was a pretty good, not even great, player who retired 5 years ago. He's not a Rhodes Scholar. He's wholly irrelevant in society! Who cares what he thinks? Is it really that shocking that there happens to be an unenlightened former player in our midst? The fact that there is a homophobic former NBA player is about as shocking as the fact that there is a gay former NBA player- not very.

Why have we not heard from any of Amaechi's former teammates? Not one of his teammates has stepped forward and gotten his back. As ignorant as Tim Hardaway has shown himself to be, he has become a very convenient scapegoat for the NBA. It's a bigger indictment of NBA players' attitudes toward homosexuality that no one has (or will) come to his defense. ESPN is giving us round-the-clock coverage of this non-story, but they cannot track down anyone that played with Amaechi for a comment? The guy retired less than four years ago! He still has former teammates all over the NBA. That not one of them has has uttered a public word in support of Amaechi sends a pretty damning message about locker room culture- either Amaechi did not play with a single player that accepts and supports his lifestyle, or those that do are afraid to say so.

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