Senior Guard Prepares to Make History as First Openly Gay Player in March MadnessÂ
Ahead of his history-making appearance in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament on Thursday night, Seton Hall University guard Derrick Gordon said he came out in 2014 because a lot of LGBT youth were killing themselves or quitting sports because they didn’t feel they fit in.Â
“So, hopefully me coming out could help them out in many ways,” Gordon told reporters Wednesday in the locker room at the Pepsi Center in Denver, where the fifth-seeded Pirates will take on 12th-seeded Xavier the first round. “Looking at me playing at a top Division I school and being in the NCAA tournament, they could be like, â€˜OK, if he can do it, I can do it.'”
Gordon, who will be the first out player to appear in what is known as March Madness, has downplayed his sexual orientation this year, declining interviews with reporters who want to focus on it.
“It’s always going to be a story until somebody else does it. I’m the only one right now in college basketball. I really don’t mind,” Gordon said Wednesday, according to The Denver Post. “I just hope one day when somebody else comes out that it’s not as big of a deal as when I came out. It’s 2016, my teammates are the perfect example that it’s all about basketball with us.
“You would think since these guys are freshmen and sophomores that they really wouldn’t understand, but that’s not the case,” he added. “They accepted me for who I was, and it made things a lot easier.”
Westboro Baptist Church, the anti-LGBT hate group from Kansas, said it plans to protest the NCAA tournament in response to Gordon’s appearance.Â
â€” Westboro Baptist (@WBCSaysRepent) March 17, 2016
In an interview with TMZ, NBA hall-of-famer Charles Barkley ripped into WBC, saying Gordon should just ignore them because “there’s always gonna be haters.” Â
â€œI hate them sumbâ€”-es,â€ Barkley said. â€œIt wonâ€™t affect the Tournament â€¦ but theyâ€™re awful people. They act like theyâ€™re religious, but theyâ€™re awful people. If we get lucky, hopefully somebody will beat the hell of them.â€
Seton Hall has a legitimate chance to advance to the Final Four in Houston, where of course voters recently repealed an ordinance banning discrimination against LGBT people. But if the Pirates go deep into the tournament, and Gordon plays a big role, it would be a huge moment in LGBT sports history.Â
Gordon is Seton Hall’s sixth man, meaning he’s typically the first substitute to enter the game. This year, he averaged 23.6 minutes and 7.9 points per game. But perhaps more importantly, as a 24-year-old graduate student and the only senior on the roster, Gordon is Seton Hall’s emotional leader.Â
â€œHeâ€™s so mature,â€ Pirates coach Kevin Willard toldÂ Fox SportsÂ after Seton Hall defeated top-ranked Villanova in Saturday’s Big East Championship. â€œHeâ€™s been through a lot and heâ€™s matured a lot. Heâ€™s really a calming presence for a group that is at times extremely emotional. He has been through it. This is his third NCAA tournament. It just kind of tells you what type of player and more importantly what type of person he is.â€
Gordon is also the first player to appear in the tournament for three different programs, having started his career at Western Kentucky before transferring to UMass, then Seton Hall. But this marks the first time heâ€™ll do it since coming out.Â
Wade Davis, theÂ gay former pro football player who serves as executive director of the You Can Play Foundation, told The Denver Post that Gordon’s story debunks myths about both athletes and African-Americans being more homophobic than the general population.Â
“If you juxtapose Derrick’s story and Michael Sam’s story, you have one that’s a wonderful success of happiness and joy and you have another that you don’t really know what happened,” Davis said. “With Derrick’s story, you can watch him on Instagram and see him recording a video of him and his teammates dancing. They’re really experiencing love and joy in a way that most of us that play sports want to experience it, absent of our sexual orientation.”Â
Images viaÂ Derrick Gordon/Facebook
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Marjorie Taylor Greene Suggests July 4 Mass Shooting Was a False Flag ‘Designed to Persuade’ GOP to Support Gun Control
U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene has promoted several very different responses over the past few hours to the July 4 mass shooting that left seven people dead, scores injured, and a two-year-old boy orphaned.
The Republican from Georgia went from promoting the right wing’s latest talking points, that antidepressants are to blame for the massacre, and demanding to see the alleged shooter’s medical records, to claiming it “sounds like” a false flag operation, “designed to persuade Republicans to go along with” gun control.
“Now, here’s what I have to say,” Greene declared on her podcast. “I mean, two shootings on July 4, one in a rich white neighborhood and the other at a fireworks display.”
(There were 218 shootings on July 4, according to information from the Gun Violence Archive.)
“Almost sounds like it’s designed to persuade Republicans to go along with more gun control,” she announced, strongly suggesting false flag operations. Police have offered no indication anyone except the alleged shooter planned the Independence Day massacre, and have said he spent weeks doing so.
“I mean, after all, remember we didn’t see that happen at all the Pride parades in the month of June,” she lamented angrily, ignoring all the right-wing violence at Pride celebrations this year.
“But as soon as we hit MAGA month, as soon as we hit the month that we’re all celebrating – loving our country,” she said, implying Democrats don’t love America and don’t celebrate Independence Day, “we have shootings on July 4. I mean, that’s a, you know, that would sound like a conspiracy theory, right? Of course. But what’s the definition of a right-wing conspiracy theory? Well, by the way, it’s the news that’s just six-months early.”
Watch below or at this link:
Marjorie Taylor Greene suggests the two July 4th shootings, “one in a rich white neighborhood and the other at a fireworks display” are false flags “designed to persuade Republicans to go along with more gun control.” pic.twitter.com/VEm6ZUdcUq
— PatriotTakes 🇺🇸 (@patriottakes) July 6, 2022
Antidepressants, Pot, and Women to Blame for Horrific July 4 Mass Shooting According to Tucker Carlson
Barely hours after authorities announced charges against the 21-year-old police believe shot and killed seven people and wounded scores of others at a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park, Illinois, Tucker Carlson explained to his Fox News audience why Robert Crimo allegedly committed mass murder: women, marijuana, and antidepressants, along with a life filled with pornography, video games, and social media.
Carlson said Crimo seems “like a nutcase,” but he “he didn’t stand out, maybe because there’s a lot of young men in America who suddenly look and act a lot like this guy.”
“That’s not an attack, it’s just true,” Carlson insisted, as Media Matters reports. “Like Crimo, they inhabit a solitary fantasy world of social media, porn, and video games. They are high on government-endorsed weed. ‘Smoke some more! It’s good for you,'” he mocked.
“They’re numbed by the endless psychotropic drugs that are handed out at every school in the country by crackpots posing as counselors,'” Carlson claimed, apparently referring to antidepressants, also known as SSRIs. School counselors, unless they are also MDs, cannot prescribe SSRIs.
(SSRIs are prescribed for “depression, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), premenstrual dysphoric disorder, migraine (prophylaxis), and other conditions.”)
Then Carlson arrived at the root of what he determined drives these young men, presumably these young men who kill.
Instead, he says, “they are angry.”
Because, Carlson declares, “the authorities in their lives — mostly women — never stop lecturing them about their so-called privilege. ‘You’re male! You’re privileged.’ Imagine that. Try to imagine an unhealthier, unhappier life than that. So, a lot of young men in America are going nuts. Are you surprised?”
Tucker: The authorities in their lives, mostly women, never stop lecturing them about their so-called male privilege. A lot of young men in America are going nuts. Are you surprised? A shockingly large number have been prescribed psychotropic drugs. pic.twitter.com/bB9Nb4CHQ1
— Acyn (@Acyn) July 6, 2022
Meanwhile, very little is known about the shooter. It is not known if he’s taking antidepressants, using pot, has a mother who attacks him for his privilege, or uses porn. But Carlson and others at Fox News are suggesting to viewers they know why he flooded more than 70 rounds into an Independence Day parade.
There have been 320 mass shootings in America this year – and we’re only on day 187.
The nation has suffered 22,583 deaths from guns just this year alone. That’s 120 deaths on average every day.
Despite those numbers, the vast, vast majority of people taking antidepressants, or using pot or porn, are not pulling the trigger in a mass shooting.
Carlson points to no statistics to show women “never stop lecturing them about their so-called privilege.”
In fact, he offers up no statistics, no proof at all of any of his claims.
Same with Fox News’ Laura Ingraham, who blames the mass shooting on pot.
Ingraham: On the mass shooting in Illinois, indications are that he was a regular pot user… What can regular pot use trigger in young men in particular? Psychosis and other violent personality changes.. pic.twitter.com/5QxveHmSXZ
— Acyn (@Acyn) July 6, 2022
U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene quickly dredged up the “psychiatric drugs” allegation less than 24 hours after the shooting started.
“What drugs and/or psychiatric drugs was he on for his mind to be ruined in alternate reality games that caused him to commit a mass shooting? His parents know. The police know. School, arrest, hospital records? The public DESERVES to know.,” she tweeted.
Dr. Sherry Pagoto is a licensed clinical psychologist, social media researcher, professor at the University of Connecticut, and Director of the UConn Center for mHealth and Social Media. She’s also the former president of the Society of Behavioral Medicine.
And she’s pushing back against the SSRI blame game.
“Psychologist here,” writes Dr. Pagoto. “Yep. And far more women take SSRIs than men and yet women never commit mass shootings. The SSRI hypothesis has absolutely no scientific support. Quite the contrary, SSRIs save lives.”
In 2019 Politifact looked at the “dubious claim that psychiatric drugs fuel mass shootings?” The fact-checking group talked with six medical experts, with one explaining “that in her view there is no evidence that psychiatric medicine is linked to mass shootings.”
Watch the videos above or at this link.
Christian Right Facing ‘Credibility’ Issues — Just as They Try to Force Their Will on Everyone Else: Analyst
On Tuesday, writing for MSNBC’s ReidOutBlog, Ja’han Jones outlined how the Christian Right is facing renewed moral scrutiny and a crisis of “credibility” — at exactly the moment they have captured the Supreme Court and have begun striking down rights and protections they have long declared to be counter to moral society.
Specifically, he argued, the latest rash of sex abuse allegations against conservative Christian institutions puts their moral authority on the line.
The Catholic Church has long faced criticism for overlooking and shielding priests accused of molesting children — but now, noted Jones, other denominations are coming under scrutiny for similar alleged misconduct.
“First, there’s the scandal still unfolding at Agapè Boarding School, a Christian facility for young men in Missouri that’s facing a slew of child abuse allegations. Agapè pitches guardians on its ability to ‘biblically teach your child the importance of submission to authority and the joys of being an obedient law-abiding citizen,'” wrote Jones. “The Missouri State Highway Patrol has been investigating Agapè for systemic child abuse for more than a year now. On Monday, The Daily Beast reported new details about several students who have filed lawsuits alleging they were sexually abused and beaten by workers at the school.”
“That alleged culture of abuse sounds similar to the one victims say was fostered by the Southern Baptist Convention, an ultraconservative denomination of Christian nationalists,” wrote Jones. “In May, church leaders released a report showing hundreds of pastors and church workers have been accused of sexual abuse. The SBC, which is in ideological lockstep with the conservative movement, has since released the names of pastors it says were accused between 2000 and 2019. When the news dropped, SBC President Ed Litton said in a statement there ‘are not adequate words to express my sorrow at the things revealed in this report,’ and that Southern Baptists ‘must resolve to change our culture and implement desperately needed reforms.'”
All of this, he noted, comes as many right-wing Christian organizations are claiming that their hate speech and discrimination against LGBTQ people is in the name of “defending children.” And this is “an impossible sell when the worlds they operate appear even more broken than the one they want to ‘fix.'”
You can read more here.
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