Another athlete comes out!

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Thomas Hitzlsperger

This time it was German FORMER soccer player Thomas Hitzlsperger.  I have no idea how to talk the language of sports so I figured it would be best use Wikipedia…or I may say something completely wrong (like touch down at a baseball game…it happened).

Wikipedia bio: Thomas Hitzlsperger (born 5 April 1982) is a German former footballer who played as a midfielder. He spent the early part of his career playing for Aston Villa in England (accompanied by a short loan spell at Chesterfield), before returning to Germany to play for Stuttgart, where he won the Bundesliga in 2007. In 2010 he signed for Italian side Lazio, before moving back to England to join West Ham United later that year. He then had brief spells with Wolfsburg and Everton.

Hitzlsperger also represented the German national team, earning 52 caps and being selected for the 2006 World Cup and Euro 2008. Following a series of injuries, he retired from football in September 2013.

As it states above, he retired in Sept. of 2013.  Yet another FORMER athlete that comes out.  I’ll take it.  I have written about athletes coming out and how I think we need more active athletes coming out.  In my opinion, athletes are scared to lose lucrative endorsements and fear not being “part of the team” so they stay closeted.  

Hitzlsperger spoke with German newspaper Die Zeit  and said he came out right before the Winter Olympics intentionally in support of the community.  “I think this is a good moment for it,”.  “The Olympic Games in Sochi are coming up and I think we need critical voices against the campaigns of several governments against homosexuals.”.  GOOD FOR YOU!! And yes yes yes!

Hitzlsperger went on to say “Homosexuality is ignored in football,”.  “To this day, I don’t know one player personally who has expressed himself on the topic,”.  “As absurd as it might sound in 2014, in soccer, ‘gay’ is still a swear word. You even say ‘gay pass’ after a weak pass to another player,”.  Sadly, he admitted to using the ‘gay’ slur himself.  Just goes to show you how (blissfully) ignorant athletes can be.  

I say GOOD FOR HIM and I look forward to more athlete taking that brave step out of the closet.  This is truly the civil rights issue of this generation and it is a shame that it is taking so long to move forward! 

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