Tim Tebow: Damned if he does, Damned if he doesn't

LZ Granderson is a talented writer who works for ESPN, which is confusing and terrifying. ESPN pays Rick Reilly to write for them, which says a lot about their taste in writing.

Anyway, Granderson wrote this brief about Tim Tebow, who declined to do a speaking engagement with a particular group that has said some hateful stuff about non-Christians. He did so to avoid controversy and, because he is an adult human being, that is absolutely within his rights. Tebow knows he is a lightning rod for this kind of stuff and he didn’t feel like getting into it right now. ‘Grats Timmy.

The scorned Christian groups complained about Tebow taking their support for granted and essentially called him out for not being their facebook friends. No matter what Tebow says or does, he will be judged harshly for it by someone on either side of whatever issue. Obviously I’m not shy about my pro-LGBT and pro-choice opinions (and Tebow has been unabashedly anti-abortion in the past), but I’m troubled by someone being harassed for opinions they haven’t made public yet. Granderson is right to point out that there are plenty of openly Christian athletes who support gay marriage and, more importantly, that there is an openly Christian athlete (Raven’s center Matt Birk) who has consistently spoken out against gay marriage who just retired and was not bothered about his bigoted stance by the media.

Basically, Tebow is taken to task for opinions he hasn’t publicly announced yet, effectively silencing him. That’s stupid. Disagreeing with someone and thinking that they are biased, privileged, or stupid is just fine and dandy, but speaking for that person while you prevent them from speaking due to the pressure you are exerting is more than a little hypocritical. 

Granderson makes this point far better than I do and his article (it’s short!) is worth your time. Read it before ESPN takes it down and replaces it with a gallery of “the top ten athletes from Santa Monica.”

thepeoplesrecord:

Eagle Scouts send their medals back to Texas in protestJuly 25, 2012 
Last Thursday, Martin Cizmar of Williamette, Oregon penned a letter to the Boy Scout bosses in Irving, Texas to voice his vehement opposition to their policy banning gay scouts and scout leaders. The Scouts early last week had officially reaffirmed their position after “a confidential two year review,” a position that has remained controversial since the U.S. Supreme Court had upheld it in 2000. Cizmar’s letter pinballed around social media, where I read it. It says, in part:

I am not gay. However, I cannot in good conscience hold this badge as long as BSA continues a policy of bigotry. Though I didn’t know it at the time, I was acquainted with a number of gay scouts and scouters. They were all great men, loyal to the scout oath and motto and helpful to the movement. There is no fair reason why they should not be allowed to participate in scouting. I suspect you know this too.
I don’t want to be an eagle scout if a young man who is gay can’t be one too. Gentlemen, please do the right thing. 

Cizmar’s simple act of defiance lit a fire under several other Eagle Scouts and now the medals are beginning to pile up down there in Irving, Texas. There’s Christopher Baker: “It is a stain on the otherwise exceptional reputation of the Boy Scouts of America. You and the current leadership at the national level should ‘be prepared’ for significant fall-out from this decision.” There’s Leo A.P. Giannini: “I don’t want to have my son or daughter one day say to me, ‘Did you know you were a member when the Boy Scouts used to not allow gay people to join?’” There’s Peter Straub and Rob Tornoe and Matthew Hitchens, and the list is growing.  
The Scouts’ marketing logo is “Prepared for Life.” Really? How does fostering a peer group without a diversity of sexual orientations prepare young men for life? The Girl Scouts of America have given up their homophobic ways, but the Boy Scouts of America are swiftly becoming out of step with broad cultural shifts and its own elite may very well lead the charge to end the bigotry. It’s time for you high profile Eagle Scouts to start sending your medals back too. Steven Spielberg, we’re looking at you. When you’re ready, here’s the address.
Source

Being an Eagle Scout means a lot to me, and I am proud to talk about how positive my scout experience was. As an atheist of Middle-Eastern descent, I was supported by my mostly Christian and White troop in San Diego, and was told by the board that reviewed my candidacy that I was “the most qualified scout they had ever encountered.” It was incredibly humbling, and one of the most powerful experiences in my life. 
Now here I am, ashamed of the bigotry that the Scouts have become associated with. I don’t know if I will return my commendation or if I will send it in, but I know I will be writing a letter imploring the National Council to grow up and embrace scouts of different colors and orientations. I’ll probably post it here when I do.

thepeoplesrecord:

Eagle Scouts send their medals back to Texas in protest
July 25, 2012 

Last Thursday, Martin Cizmar of Williamette, Oregon penned a letter to the Boy Scout bosses in Irving, Texas to voice his vehement opposition to their policy banning gay scouts and scout leaders. The Scouts early last week had officially reaffirmed their position after “a confidential two year review,” a position that has remained controversial since the U.S. Supreme Court had upheld it in 2000. Cizmar’s letter pinballed around social media, where I read it. It says, in part:

I am not gay. However, I cannot in good conscience hold this badge as long as BSA continues a policy of bigotry. Though I didn’t know it at the time, I was acquainted with a number of gay scouts and scouters. They were all great men, loyal to the scout oath and motto and helpful to the movement. There is no fair reason why they should not be allowed to participate in scouting. I suspect you know this too.

I don’t want to be an eagle scout if a young man who is gay can’t be one too. Gentlemen, please do the right thing. 

Cizmar’s simple act of defiance lit a fire under several other Eagle Scouts and now the medals are beginning to pile up down there in Irving, Texas. There’s Christopher Baker: “It is a stain on the otherwise exceptional reputation of the Boy Scouts of America. You and the current leadership at the national level should ‘be prepared’ for significant fall-out from this decision.” There’s Leo A.P. Giannini: “I don’t want to have my son or daughter one day say to me, ‘Did you know you were a member when the Boy Scouts used to not allow gay people to join?’” There’s Peter Straub and Rob Tornoe and Matthew Hitchens, and the list is growing.  

The Scouts’ marketing logo is “Prepared for Life.” Really? How does fostering a peer group without a diversity of sexual orientations prepare young men for life? The Girl Scouts of America have given up their homophobic ways, but the Boy Scouts of America are swiftly becoming out of step with broad cultural shifts and its own elite may very well lead the charge to end the bigotry. It’s time for you high profile Eagle Scouts to start sending your medals back too. Steven Spielberg, we’re looking at you. When you’re ready, here’s the address.

Source

Being an Eagle Scout means a lot to me, and I am proud to talk about how positive my scout experience was. As an atheist of Middle-Eastern descent, I was supported by my mostly Christian and White troop in San Diego, and was told by the board that reviewed my candidacy that I was “the most qualified scout they had ever encountered.” It was incredibly humbling, and one of the most powerful experiences in my life. 

Now here I am, ashamed of the bigotry that the Scouts have become associated with. I don’t know if I will return my commendation or if I will send it in, but I know I will be writing a letter imploring the National Council to grow up and embrace scouts of different colors and orientations. I’ll probably post it here when I do.

(Source: thepeoplesrecord, via reagan-was-a-horrible-president)

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