Michael Sam became the first openly gay player in the NFL when the St. Louis Rams drafted him over the weekend. Sam was a 7th round draft pick, 249th over all. Rams coach Jeff Fisher said, “This is a football decision. We are very, very comfortable with everything about him. We’re mindful of the fact that there’s going to be a peak in media attention. We’re OK with that. We’ll have a press conference, and then once we do that, we’ll put it behind us…He deserves a chance.” Sam understandably shared an emotion-filled moment with his family after the announcement was made. And he turned over and kissed what people are saying is his boyfriend on national TV. That public display of affection made some uncomfortable. Him smashing the cake in his partners face and eating it off his face specifically made others feel it was too much. Former Super Bowl Champ Derrick Ward tweeted, “I’m sorry but that Michael Sam is no bueno for doing that on national tv. Man U got little kids lookin at the draft. I can’t believe ESPN even allowed that to happen.” He received death threats after that.
Miami Dolphins safety Don Jones also expressed his disapproval, tweeting “horrible” and “OMG” after the kiss was aired. He has since deleted those comments. The Dolphins responded ordering Jones to pay an undisclosed fine and banning him from team activities until he finishes “training for his recent comments made on social media.” He then issued a saying, “I want to apologize to Michael Sam for the inappropriate comments that I made last night on social media. I take full responsibility for them and I regret that these tweets took away from his draft moment. I remember last year when I was drafted in the seventh round and all of the emotions and happiness I felt when I received the call that gave me an opportunity to play for an NFL team and I wish him all the best in his NFL career.”
President Barack Obama also weighed in. “The President congratulates Michael Sam, the Rams and the NFL for taking an important step forward today in our Nation’s journey,” the White House said in a statement. “From the playing field to the corporate boardroom, LGBT Americans prove everyday that you should be judged by what you do and not who you are.”
Listen at the end of the day let this guy live. If you don’t like it, change the channel. He deserves to be free and do the things that make him happy whether he’s on TV or not. I do also think we need to be more open by allowing others to voice (in a respect way) their opinion about this. I think its unfair for people express their dislikes and receive death threats. Respect needs to come from all sides.