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A Timeline of Incremental Progress [x]
Big-time sports lag behind other areas of American society in terms of the number of gay and lesbian participants who feel they can be open about their sexual orientation. Not once, for example, has an active male player in any of the four major professional sports leagues in America publicly acknowledged being gay. But retired football, basketball and baseball players, along with active players in other sports, have come out. And there are plenty of lesbian athletes in women’s professional sports. Here are some milestones from the last four decades :
***2012 Megan Rapinoe, a midfielder on the U.S. women’s soccer team, confirms in July in Out magazine that she is a lesbian. “In female sports, if you’re gay, most likely your team knows it pretty quickly,” she tells Out. “It’s very open and widely supported. For males, it’s not that way at all. It’s sad.” Soon after, during the 2012 London Olympics, Rapinoe and her teammates capture the gold medal.