The League

Liz Clarke
Staff Writer

Liz Clarke

Washington Post Sports Reporter

Slight Movement

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The NFL has never mirrored American society. It's a brutal sport, played by men of aberrant size and physique, in which the primacy of the individual is sublimated in favor of group think. It's also a sport in which hyper-machismo isn't just celebrated but deemed an essential ingredient for success. That's a tough setting for tolerance of differences, particularly regarding sexual orientation, to flourish.

That said, the needle has moved slightly, I think, on the issue of homosexuality in the league. The NFL's mandatory rookie orientation program started incorporating a discussion of homophobia in 2006. And, in my eyes, the election of President Obama and the viability of Hillary Clinton's campaign proved that as Americans, we have never been closer to the ideal of judging one another by the content of our character rather than by prejudices about what women and minority groups of all walks of life have to offer.

By Liz Clarke  |  June 17, 2009; 11:13 AM ET  | Category:  NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Hyper-machismo is, and always have been, latently bordering on homo-erotism. That's why they don't want real women and real gays getting in their way, because if that happens, then they'll have to act the man role in order to preserve their macho reputation.

Posted by: asoders22 | June 17, 2009 2:10 PM

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