Join the informed writers of The Times' editorial board in lively discussions at our blog, Opinion Northwest.
You are viewing the most recent posts on this topic.
February 10, 2014 at 12:16 PM
In an ideal world, the news that Michael Sam, an All-American college football player likely headed to the NFL, is gay would be treated with a shrug. Of course, there are gay men and women in professional sports, just as there have been gay astronauts, gay military officers and so on.
We’re not in an ideal world. Ending bigotry is a slow march, but it has accelerated in the past decade. Sam, 24, and his future NFL teammates are part of a generation in which same-sex marriage is increasingly a given (17 states and counting). The millennial generation (born after 1981) supports same-sex marriage by a 2-to-1 margin, according to the 2013 Pew Research Center poll below. The welcoming reaction from Sam’s Missouri football teammates (coach Gary Pinkel told CBS he was “proud” of Sam) is not an anomaly. It reflects changed politics.
Reaction to Sam’s coming out may focus on the one-third, as well as the older, less tolerant members of the generation running NFL franchises.
But the Seahawks linebacker Malcolm Smith, the Super Bowl MVP, reflects the ideal-world shrug, which I suspect that sentiment is more pervasive in the NFL than anyone knows. He tweeted:
There is no room for bigotry in American sports. It takes courage to change the culture.
— Malcolm Smith (@MalcSmitty) February 10, 2014
The NFL itself made a good showing of tolerance. ”We admire Michael Sam’s honesty and courage. Michael is a football player. Any player with ability and determination can succeed in the NFL. We look forward to welcoming and supporting Michael Sam in 2014.”
ESPN writer LZ Granderson writes, Michael Sam is not “a novelty.” He notes the history of out former NFL players, including ex-Husky David Kopay, who had dinner with Sam last night, and Wade Davis, who is advising Sam. That support will help.
And more importantly, Sam has talent. Undeniable, pro-level talent. The kind of talent that would make the prospect of him not being drafted, not being signed, not having his cleats laced up on Sundays perhaps the most blatant form of pop culture homophobia since Ellen DeGeneres was chased off of television in 1998.
Here’s hoping the Seahawks — with a strong unconventional coach and a urbane fan base in a state that just legalized gay marriage, and a city that just elected its first gay mayor — will give Sam a chance to lace them up. Judging by his highlight reel, Sam is a sack monster.
February 5, 2014 at 6:20 AM
The Seattle Seahawks are throwing the 12th Man the biggest super-sized party Seattle has seen since 1979. And they’re picking up the bill.
The Seahawks’ city-issued parade permit includes standard costs for traffic control, said Jeff Reading, Mayor Ed Murray’s spokesman. Costs above that – including a call-out of “every available police officer,” according to a city source – will be paid for by the Seahawks.
How much that will be is a secret, for now. Seattle police don’t disclose costs for big events in advance, for security reasons. (more…)
January 31, 2014 at 6:30 AM
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford offered some crack sports analysis and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie weighed in with a similar opinion. Both predict the Denver Broncos will beat the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday.
Christie thinks Peyton Manning will lead his team to victory in a close game, Denver by three points. Ford expects the Broncos to win by more than two touchdowns.These prognostications won’t bring traffic to a screeching halt, though Christie could probably arrange that. Super Bowl Sunday is taking place at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
Having these two go for Denver is one of the most encouraging things I’ve heard leading up to the game. If nothing else, tea party voters in Washington might want to remember Christie’s pick if he shows up on the GOP presidential ballot in 2016.
January 30, 2014 at 11:42 AM
Leading up to the NFC Championship Game between the Seahawks and the 49ers, San Francisco Chronicle editorial writer Marshall Kilduff sent me a 49ers T-shirt. He and I had both argued over which team was better and which city was superior.
January 22, 2014 at 11:58 AM
See the photo to the right? It’s a little memento that arrived in the mail Tuesday morning from San Francisco editorial writer Marshall Kilduff.
Kilduff and I squared off in our respective blogs leading up to the past two 49ers-Seahawks games. We argued over which was the better city the week before the Dec. 8 game, which the 49ers won. (Me: “Which is the better city?”; Kilduff: “Seattle talks smack, we talk back”).
Last week, we defended our teams leading up to the battle for the NFC title, and the Seahawks won. (Me: “Top 10 reasons Seahawks should win the NFC championship”; Kilduff: “Give hate a chance”).
What should I send to Kilduff? Do I take a cue from Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman? And what should I do with this 49ers t-shirt?
Tell me your ideas in this form. (more…)
January 22, 2014 at 6:59 AM
Seahawks fans sent images of themselves from around the world in 12th Man gear in response to my Monday blog post about a Tacoma native living in Paris.
The most impressive entry came from Gordon Prinster of West Seattle, who shared a video of himself planting a 12th Man flag at 22,837 feet on Mount Aconcagua in Argentina on Jan. 4. Aconcagua is the tallest peak in the Americas.
January 20, 2014 at 6:45 AM
PARIS, France – Allez Seahawks.
“It’s our turn,” Tacoma native Krystal Romano said early Monday morning, Paris time, when the Seahawks won the NFC championship game in Seattle. “We haven’t won a Super Bowl yet. This team, this puzzle full of misfits and last picks – we made it work.” (more…)
January 15, 2014 at 6:09 AM
Seattle and San Francisco’s football teams play Sunday for the NFC championship title. Clearly, the Seahawks should win. Here are my reasons below.
And check out San Francisco Chronicle editorial writer Marshall Kilduff’s reasons in an Opinion Shop blog post on why the 49ers should win.
Thank you to the Hawks fans who helped me come up with this top 10 list. (more…)
December 30, 2013 at 1:49 PM
I was at a ramen house in University Village on Sunday with my sister from Los Angeles, refreshing the Seahawks app on my phone between slurps and conversation. My Twitter feed, too. We headed to a dessert shop afterward. A well-dressed mother and young daughter sitting next to us wondered aloud what the score was. I broke out my phone and gave them an update. Just four ladies at Fran’s Chocolates, talking football. The little girl’s father is a rabid fan and season ticket-holder. They weren’t with him at the game, but they were with him in spirit.
On Sunday, the Seahawks won the NFC West division title by beating the St. Louis Rams and secured home-field advantage until the Super Bowl.
For the first time in my life, this Washington native is genuinely interested in Seahawks football.
I’m cheering on my home team because it unites us. Brings us together during these dark, cold dreary days of winter. (more…)
December 6, 2013 at 10:57 PM
We’ve gotten quite a few responses to our post this morning about which city is better, Seattle or San Francisco. We trumpeted our beautiful summers and our liberal social policies. The San Francisco Chronicle retorted, calling Microsoft a “lumbering” enterprise and poked fun at Amazon.com’s drone idea.
Our readers are having their say as well, with 49 (coincidence) in support of S.F. and 34 in favor of Seattle. That’d better not be the final score of the game. Keep the responses coming. Here’s the best of what has been submitted so far (note, load times may vary):