Did you know? The State of Gay Professional Athletes

Roy Simmons was on the View today.
Roy Simmons is only one of three former NFL players to publicly disclose his homosexuality. Simmons was a offensive lineman with the New York Giants and Washington Redskins from 1979-84, and came out as gay on the Phil Donahue show in 1992, then promptly disappeared. No more stories would appear about Simmons for the next 12 years.

Simmons, 47, broke his silence in an interview in the New York Times (strangely, the story ran in the Style section, not Sports...hah) and his story is a compelling tale of a star athlete who hit rock bottom and is trying to get back up. And of course, he wrote a book about it.
In the book, "Out of Bounds", Simmons reveals he is HIV-positive, he was raped by a neighbor when he was 11, he was in drug rehabilitation twice for drugs and alcohol. Simmons also shares that he once came close to jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge, and was homeless for a brief time.

This is a topic that I am very interested in. On the View Simmons suggested to modern-day gay athletes that it would be best for them to stay in the closet, despite the pain and internal torment he endured. He said that the league, the managers, staff and teammates still aren't ready for gays in their system.
And I am just interested to see if there will ever be a strong movement among gay professional athletes, or will it forever stay taboo?

content supplemented by www.outsports.com/nfl/2003/1201roysimmons.htm, for more information on gay athletes check out www.outsports.com, and a brief history list (last updated 1998) at http://espn.go.com/otl/world/timeline.html

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