A disappointing comment by an AFL player, telling gay AFL players to "stay in the closet"

Page:   1 2

Joined in 2009
May 20, 2010, 22:34

This article is from the Herald Sun:

Stay in the closet, Jason Akermanis tells gay players

A LEADING footballer has told gay players who are thinking of coming out to stay in the closet – because the world of AFL isn’t ready to accept them.

Writing in today’s Herald Sun, Jason Akermanis said the football world simply couldn’t deal with a gay player publicly outing himself.

He also said it would prove to be too much of a burden for a player to become the first person to come out in AFL.

“I believe the world of AFL footy is not ready for it. To come out is unnecessary for a lot of reasons,” he writes.

“Football clubs are very different environments. Locker room nudity is an everyday part of our lives and unlike any other work place.

“I believe it would cause discomfort in that environment should someone declare himself gay.”

Akermanis said he was all for initiatives that helped to lessen public bias against homosexuality but that football was not one of them.

“I know there are many who think a public AFL outing would break down homophobia, but they don’t live in football clubs,” Akermanis said.

“We have made massive steps in other areas of society and in time I hope the environment changes to a degree where coming out isn’t a big deal.”

The Western Bulldogs player said that while coming out was more acceptable in women’s sports, it remained less so in men’s.

In 1995, rugby league star Ian Roberts announced he was gay, becoming the first person in the history of the sport to do so, attracting both admiration and support.

Joined in 2008
May 20, 2010, 22:48

Very disappointing indeed.

And on the same day a study on homophobia in sport was released. You can download the report from the following website;

Joined in 2010
May 21, 2010, 01:03

I was watching this on the Morning Show this morning…

I just couldn’t get over it… Pathetic attitude.

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
May 21, 2010, 10:01

Hi there

I agree with Ian Roberts, the NRL guy who came out some time ago. He couldn’t fathom what use Jason’s comments were for anyone. He said that Akermanis spoke as if he thought he was an expert on LGBT issues but clearly is not. I agree with Roberts that coming out, no matter in what profession, is a very personal decision and not something for an AFL player or any other representative to direct/influence for others.

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
May 21, 2010, 10:01

possibly Jason Akermanis is just wanting some media attention.

the comment is ill-informed…..only displaying his ignorance.

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
May 21, 2010, 10:03

Yeah that’s the only thing that Roberts could conclude: that he was achieving media attention and nothing else. Surely there’s many other things that could have won him that though.

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
May 21, 2010, 10:09

we are often used for others agendas……

Chapter Leader
Joined in 2008
May 21, 2010, 12:01

As a Sydney-sider and AFL fan, I was pleased with the response from Sydney Swans Coach – Paul Roos – suggesting that the Akermanis comments were from the 1940’s rather than from 2010.

Being in Melbourne today, the Herald-Sun (Australia’s top-selling daily) has lots of letters on the subject running about 80% against Akermanis . . . which either accurately reflects the what’s been received, or an editorial selection bias (unlikely).

I actually think he may have unwittingly done good in respect to opening up the subject for open comment. Might even provoke an AFL player (past or present) to open up.

Joined in 2009
May 23, 2010, 02:36

Well I hope that no AFL players that are gay or bisexual will take notice of what Akermanis was saying – he just came across as silly to me and my hope is that there isnt any AFL player that will be deterred by what he said. I was very glad that others like Paul Roos spoke out, making it clear Akrmanis words shouldnt be taken seriously.

I felt indignant – like who is he to say when and where gay or bi AFL players can come out – he isnt even gay or bi (so far as we know) so what right does he have to say what he did. If someone ought to stay in the closet maybe he should!

Joined in 2009
May 23, 2010, 22:19

Here is a fab response to Jason Ackemanis from Nandos

Nandos responds to Aker

Its clever and Nandos didnt have to do it…

Page:   1 2
WP Forum Server by ForumPress | LucidCrew
Version: 99.9; Page loaded in: 0.063 seconds.