More on Baltimore Ravens LB Brendon Ayanbadejo who is emerging as one of the most articulate supporters of gay rights in pro sports. BA tells the Washington Blade that growing up in progressive Santa Cruz, Calif., made it easy for him to become an ally and write the Huffington Post pro-marriage equality op-ed that declared "we will look back in 10, 20, 30 years and be amazed that gays and lesbians did not have the same rights as everyone else."
Ayanbadejo told the Blade that when the piece was published, he forwarded it to several friends and associates, but didn’t get much reaction. Ayanbadejo said that it wasn’t until months after he wrote the April opinion piece that people began to take notice. "Equality Maryland sent a letter to the Ravens media department, and they passed the letter on to me and asked if I wanted to attend their [open house] event," Ayanbadejo said regarding his appearance at last month’s reception. "It was in inner-city Baltimore, so I said, ‘For sure. I’m interested in making a difference.' "
Ayanbadejo says fellow athletes are becoming more tolerant: "There are a lot of words thrown around out there that aren’t politically correct. But it’s a lot less than when I first started playing and everything is changing for the better."
One example: New Orleans Saints LB Scott Fujita supports Ayanbadejo in an interview at The Nation. "I hope he's right in his prediction, and I hope it doesn't take that long. People could look at this issue without blinders... I wish they would realize that it's not a religion issue. It's not a government issue. It's not even a gay/straight issue or a question of your manhood. It's a human issue."