PHOTO: AP PHOTO/Seimone Augustus
One of the leading players in the WNBA says she will wed her girlfriend next year and will become more vocal about LGBT equality.
Seimone Augustus (right) is a guard for the Minnesota Lynx, a three time WNBA All-Star and won gold medals in women's basketball at the London and Beijing Olympic games. Augustus will wed her fiancee LaTaya Varner (left) in May. The November vote on a proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in Minnesota prompted her to "speak out ... now", the openly lesbian athlete told the AP.
"I felt like it was the perfect time for me, being on a platform where I can make a change with my voice and my situation," Augustus [said]. "Maybe inspire someone else to come out and be comfortable with themselves. Or maybe someone else's parents will see my parents saying that it's OK to be with your child and love your child unconditionally regardless of your sexual preference."
Augustus came out to supportive parents when she was still in high school and has never hidden the fact that she's lesbian. But it wasn't until she proposed to Varner on Miami Beach that she started feeling comfortable with the idea of taking things public.
"I just never understood why someone else's love life and who they love and who they choose to be with affects so many other people's lives," Augustus said. "Is it a scare of, 'Gay people are going to be running around and everyone's going to turn gay?' I never understood the whole point of opposing or hating someone else's happiness."
Augustus and Varner met in June 2007 There's a beautiful feature in today's Star-Tribune that describes how they met, their first date ("Chicken and waffles") and how they fell in love. "I couldn't see myself with anybody else than her," said Varner.
The couple talks more about their relationship and the marriage amendment in a video interview. Note: Augustus erroneously says that "if it passes" in November, their marriage would be legal. Not true. Same-sex marriages are prohibited by statute in Minnesota. With that aside, it's still a great interview. Watch it AFTER THE JUMP ...