Peter was the first tip off. If you were straight you'd go by PeteG. I know because I read "How to Spot a Lesser Gay". It's rule #49 on page 87.. Did I sound gay saying that??
I suspect that PeterG was sarcastic.
Being heterosexual and therefore, not able to completely understand the reason why it is important for role models such as athletes or actors or other public figures to be out/recognized for who they are sexually, I wish that the whole hetero/homo sexual issue be a non-issue. That people could be seen with their romantic interests without judgement, that PDAs if acceptable for heterosexual would be acceptable for homosexuals. That endorsements were equal for hetero vs. homosexual, for male vs. female, all sports vs. selected sports, but then marketing people didn't ask me.
Frankly, I wish that we would use the terms Heterosexual and Homosexual rather than straight and gay. I understand that is my personal preference and probably can not understand why others feel the terms straight or gay as the appropriate designation.
I think the reason it is so difficult for athletes to come out, is the personal closeness of locker rooms, rooming arrangements, etc. If we have separate locker rooms/rooming arrangement for male vs. female for the reason that sexual attraction "could" occur, it makes the powers that be uncomfortable with how they set up shared facilities.
I think we should be able to be who we are without judgement.
As for why it's important for people to be out: it's all about visibility. I believe that 1) it's important to be out, and 2) it's reprehensible to out someone without their permission. Being out can endanger your life and your livelihood. In the US, you can be fired for being gay, you can be denied housing, etc. There is a lot of legal discrimination, and we're never going to end that discrimination if being gay is seen as a sickness or illness that can and should be cured -- another reason for the push-back against the term homosexual, which mostly gets used as a derogatory way of speaking about us and how we should be fixed.
I think the only time it's might be okay to out somebody is as a form of self-defense: if someone is actively hurting gay people by their policies or speeches, then outting them is a way of rebuting their statements. But it's nothing to be done lightly.
Because, yeah, it should be no big deal to be out... but it's not. It can really mess up your life, destroy your career, and put you in danger, and that needs to be taken seriously. Outing somebody is never innocent and it's never harmless. If general-you believe somebody "should" be out, then it's general-your responsibility to make the world a good enough place so that they feel comfortable being out.
The Junior Grand Prix: Where skaters who "come out of nowhere" come from.
I don't actually use any of those terms very often, but would be curious to hear other people's thoughts.
I think she's awesome; on and off the court. She always brings extra energy to the US team.