Coming on the heels of San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver suggesting that no gay people play on the 49ers, and if the do, they should leave, comes a new revelation that isn’t going to win the team any friends in the gay community.
The 49ers much-acclaimed “It Gets Better” video just got worse. Two of the four players who made the anti-bullying video are now denying their involvement after finding out that the video’s purpose was to stop the bullying of lgbt teens. Both seemed particularly uncomfortable in an interview today with USA Today Sports when they found out they were helping lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender kids.
Dan Savage, who founded the “It Gets Better” project, announced tonight that he has removed the San Francisco 49ers video from the project archive.
From Kevin Manahan at USA Today Sports, who got the scoop on this story:
At first, [Ahmad] Brooks and [Isaac] Sopoaga, approached by USA TODAY Sports, denied being part of the project.
“I didn’t make any video,” Brooks said. “This is America and if someone wants to be gay, they can be gay. It’s their right. But I didn’t make any video.”
When told USA TODAY Sports had seen the video and he was in it, Brooks replied, “I don’t remember that. I think if I made a video, I’d remember it.”
He was shown the video on an iPhone.
“Oh, that. It was an anti-bullying video, not a gay (rights) video,” he said.
When told that studies show that the majority of teens who are bullied are harassed over sexual identity issues, Brooks thought for a second.
“I know that. I know that,” he said. “Okay, you’re right and I’m wrong. Are you from one of those New York newspapers?”
Manahan goes on to detail his interview with Sopoaga, which goes about just as well.
The Huffington Post’s top story on their home page summed up how a lot of us are feeling about the 49ers right about now:
I’m sure we’ll be reading another apology written by another PR flak any moment now. The 49ers are in the Super Bowl on Sunday and the team’s recent gay-baiting-palooza has got to be an unwelcome distraction.
What is the matter with these people? I’ll tell you. Homophobia still rules in a lot of places, top among them, professional sports. There’s a reason there are no openly-gay NFL players. Who would want to be associated with any of these bigoted jerks?