Metro Weekly

Jason Collins praises Hillary Clinton in Democratic convention speech

First openly gay player in the NBA praises Hillary Clinton for accepting him and supporting LGBT rights

Collins (Photo: Washington Post).
Collins (Photo: Washington Post).

“Before I came out to the world on the cover of Sports Illustrated, I came out privately to the Clinton family. I knew that they would accept me for who I was, and that they would help pave the path for others to do the same.”

–Jason Collins, a former player for the Brooklyn Nets for 13 years and the first openly gay man in the National Basketball Association (NBA), addressing the Democratic National Convention on Monday and expressing his support for presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, as reported by The Washington Post

Collins made history when he came out in 2013, making him the first active openly gay male athlete in U.S. professional team sports. He was introduced at the convention by his twin brother, Jarron, who played for the Utah Jazz for 11 years. 

In his speech, Jason Collins said that, after coming out to the Clintons, he was “grateful for their words of wisdom back then and for their unconditional support.”

“They knew that my sexual orientation made no difference in my ability to play basketball,” Collins said, “just as someone’s gender makes no difference in his or her ability to lead our nation.

“My dream was to play in the NBA and live my authentic life as a proud gay man at the same time,” said Collins. “I was able to accomplish both of those goals because of the people who have supported me throughout my life.”

Collins also praised Clinton’s record on LGBT issues, concluding: “As both an African-American and a member of the LGBT community, the choice for continued progress is clear: This November, we must elect Hillary Clinton as our next president.”

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