2013 SEC Defensive Player of the Year Michael Sam - University of Missouri - has come out as gay becoming the first Division I college football (American football) player to openly come out. He is also expected to be a top pick for the NFL draft this year. Please join me in congratulating this brave young man and wishing him all the best in his future.

“Trailblazers like Michael are tearing down barriers to equality almost daily, and I sincerely believe that the young person who will go on to become the first openly LGBT President of the United States watches today’s news somewhere in this country and is inspired,” said HRC President Chad Griffin.


Activism works. 

Something really incredible happened at the University of Missouri today. After months of protests, including a hunger strike by a black graduate student named Jonathan Butler and a refusal to play by black players on the Mizzou football team, university President Tim Wolfe stepped down. This comes after students called for his resignation due to his inaction on various incidents of racism on the campus since he became president in 2012. 

This is an extraordinary moment for Missouri students and students across all campuses who are underrepresented and marginalized. 

Keep fighting. 

#ConcernedStudent1950 #MizzouHungerStrike

MO state rep wants to revoke Mizzou football scholarships over strike.

About a month ago, all of the Black football players at the University of Missouri stood together in protest of the school’s president, Tim Wolfe.  They went on strike, using their position as vital moneymakers for the university as leverage against campus-wide racism being mishandled from the top down.  With the football coach standing behind them, the strike was successful and Tim Wolfe stepped down a few days later.  Now State Representative Rick Brattin wants to introduce a bill stripping football players of their scholarships if they refuse to play for any reason unrelated to a health concern.

Basically, even though you make the school millions of dollars of which you never see a penny, even though your financial contributions to the economic health of the university more than outweighs the cost of your tuition, and even though you are classified as a student athlete, the “athlete” portion is all that matters, and your safety and well-being as a student takes a backseat to pumping more money into the university weekend after weekend.  This white man has basically said “these Negroes need to be happy with what we give them, make us a bunch of money, and shut up about it.”

Keep reading

Somebody give this man a high five!

Athletes and leaders like him are showing what real courage looks like. Let’s give him a high five and thank him for his bravery.We congratulate Michael Sam and the St. Louis Rams on their terrific decision to draft him in the NFL. Today, LGBT young people can look to Sam as proof that being open and proud of who you are doesn’t keep you from achieving your dreams. Michael Sam, the St. Louis Rams and the NFL community are providing hope to millions of LGBT young people across the country and around the world.

Add your name, and we’ll send him your virtual high-five.

click: here.

Black Missouri Football Players On Strike Until University President Resigns
Black players for the Mizzou Tigers on Saturday joined a weeks-long student protest against university officials' handling of alleged racism on campus.
By Stephanie McNeal

A group of black football players at the University of Missouri said Saturday they refuse to keep playing unless the school’s president resigns, angered by his administration’s perceived failure to combat racism on campus.

“The athletes of color on the University of Missouri football team truly believe ‘Injustice Anywhere is a threat to Justice Everywhere,’” read a message tweeted with the photo.

“We will no longer participate in any football related activities until President Tim Wolfe resigns or is removed due to his negligence toward marginalized students’ experiences. WE ARE UNITED!!!!!”

The message was shared online by a school group called the Legion of Black Collegians (LBC).

The players include Kentrell Brothers, the leading tackler in college football, according to the Columbia Tribune. Other notable players include defensive end Charles Harris, running backs Russell Hansbrough and Ish Witter, and several other starters, the newspaper reported.

The LBC said that they didn’t coerce the players to take a stand.

“While we strive to be the leading voice for all black students, the players did not make their decision on behalf of anyone but themselves,” the group said.

The university in Columbia has seen students protesting in recent weeks against what they call a systematic failure of the administration to combat racism on campus.

The protesters have united under a group named “Concerned Students 1950,” which the Columbia Tribune reports is a reference to the first year black students were admitted to campus.

The group is seeking the ouster of President Tim Wolfe, accusing him of personally failing to address numerous accusations of racism on campus.

These incidents, according to the protesters, include the school’s black student body president, Payton Head, being called a racial slur on campus, as well as a swastika being drawn in a residence hall with feces.

The protesters say there have also been incidents of protesters being threatened with pepper spray, and students being denied health insurance.

The tensions came to head during the school’s homecoming demonstration, when Wolfe was accused of laughing and ignoring a group of protesters who blocked his vehicle.

“He laughed. In our faces,” Butler wrote on Facebook.

On Monday, Butler said he would go on a hunger strike until Wolfe was ousted from his role, and says he hasn’t eaten since.

Butler wrote on Saturday that after 121 hours without food he was feeling weak but standing tall.

“My body feels about the same as yesterday but more importantly my heart and mind are strong,” he said.

In response to the protests, Wolfe said Friday that he is sorry about how he reacted at the homecoming parade. In a statement, he said he was caught off guard and regretted not handling the situation better, adding that he thinks if he had done so he could have helped the situation.

“Racism does exist at our university and it is unacceptable,” Wolfe said. “It is a long-standing, systemic problem which daily affects our family of students, faculty, and staff. I am sorry this is the case.”

Wolfe added that he has met with Butler, and is worried about his health.

“His voice for social justice is important and powerful,” Wolfe said, speaking about Butler. “He is being heard and I am listening. I am thankful for the leadership provided by him and the other student leaders in raising awareness of racism, injustice, and intolerance.”

The school’s athletic department responded to the player’s decision on Twitter, saying the department supports its players.

The team’s coach, Gary Pinkel, also announced on Twitter that the team was united behind the cause.

As the news of the players’ protest spread, the state’s governor, Jay Nixon, said that the school needed to address the concerns of the protestors.

“Racism and intolerance have no place at the University of Missouri or anywhere in our state,” he said in a statement. “Our colleges and universities must be havens of trust and understanding. These concerns must be addressed to ensure the University of Missouri is a place where all students can pursue their dreams in an environment of respect, tolerance and inclusion.”

Butler wrote on social media after the players’ announcement that other students need to decide “what side of history you are going to be on.”

“So either engage fully in this pursuit towards justice at Mizzou or don’t comment,” he wrote.

Mizzou players go on strike, want president out
Black players on the Missouri football team say they will go on strike until embattled university system president Tim Wolfe resigns.

Black University of Missouri football players are striking until university president Tim Wolfe resigns after his poor handling of racist incidents on campus, including verbal assaults of several black students including the student body president.

42 of the 64 players on Missouri’s current depth chart are African-American. Several took to social media on Saturday night to address the protest, with one, cornerback John Gibson, saying: “[The decision] has nothing to do with our coaches. Our coaches are 100% behind us. Including the white ones.”

Missouri House files bill that would revoke scholarships of athletes who refuse to play except for medical reasons

When the Mizzou protestors launched their short-lived strike and threatened to force a cancellation of a Saturday football game (which would have cost the University upwards of $2 million), there were two big things that didn’t seem to filter through their heads:  firstly, that the protests they were joining were based on lies, bad guesswork, and overt racism from the protest organizers; and secondly, that playing football at a university for a scholarship is a privilege that they have to earn…chiefly by playing football.  In an effort to remind players of point #2, the Missouri House of Representatives has filed a bill that, if passed, would automatically revoke the scholarships of student athletes who refused to play for reasons other than health.

read the rest

College football’s plantation problem: The violent game — and billion-dollar industry — where black kids take all the risk for none of the profit
By Steve Almond

By now, we’ve all heard the story of Tim Wolfe, the president of the University of Missouri who resigned Monday, amid accusations that he had tolerated an atmosphere of racial hostility on campus.

Any college president who views “systematic oppression” as a belief system, or a perception, rather than an objective reality, deserves his or her pink slip.

But the cold fact of it is that Wolfe resigned not because of his towering ignorance, or because of campus activists, or a graduate student’s hunger strike against him, or even the threat of a faculty walkout.

No, Wolfe resigned because the members of the Mizzou football team threatened not to play ball until he did.

As media narratives go, this chain of events has been heralded as a triumph, some kind of civil rights coup in shoulder pads. And Wolfe is, without a doubt, the kind of benighted fool who makes for a perfect scapegoat.

But there’s a sadder and more disruptive lesson in all this, one about the power of this country’s Football Industrial Complex.

Yes, Missouri football helped get the president canned. The sport remains a mostly unacknowledged fount of racism


A Trailblazer…“I Am Michael Sam, I’m a College Graduate, I’m An African-American, and I’m Gay.”

In A New York Times’ Article, Michael Sam, A Defensive End For The University of Missouri, Who will Likely Be Drafted Into The NFL, Has Come Out Of The Closet!

This Is Big News!!

You Owned Your Story, Michael! You Are Very Courageous! You Possess The Maturity To Accept Yourself! You Have The Respect Of Teammates, Family, And Friends! You Have The Talent And Ability To Succeed In The NFL! And You Will Inspire Many Others!

“Openly Proud Gay Man.”

I’m Not Afraid Of Who I Am.“

"I Am Michael Sam, I’m a College Graduate, I’m An African-American, and I’m Gay.”

You Are A True Sports Stud, Sir!

Thank You!