Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet? - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:23 PM Thread Starter
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Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

Why is it taboo on this board to discuss sexuality? Being gay is not a bad thing and being gay more than just having sex just like being straight is more than having sex. When the media focus on heterosexual tennis players getting married to a pro NHL player such as Elena Dementieva nobody says anything.

When straight tennis players like Kim Clijsters gets married has a baby the press can't stop gushing about her amazing comeback to win 3 grand slam singles titles.

However, nobody also says anything when the WTA tour creates this campaign where the female tennis players have to dress up and try to look as feminine as possible. Seems like to me the WTA is actually trying to push a heterosexual image to the general public which isn't a bad thing. However, it does seem like the WTA is trying to sell female sexuality to attain more media attention and public support. But the WTA only places emphasis on maintaining a heterosexual image I think lesbians are discouraged to come out in women's tennis now.

In the past, some of the greatest female tennis players to every play the game are lesbian. Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King, Amelie Mauresmo broke down barriers by being out and proud. All three of these women are Wimbledon champions.

For millions of gay people, we look at Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King and Amelie Mauresmo with pride because they lived their lives on their own terms. Mauresmo didn't lose any endorsements when she came out either.

I can't help but wish the ATP Tour had the same kind of thing. Nobody has come out in men's tennis since Von Cramm and Bill Tilden in the 1920s and 1930s.

Since pro tennis is an individual sport one would think a gay male tennis player would not have any barriers to come out. He doesn't answer to team mates because he's not on a team he's his own man.

Tennis fans know who most of the lesbian tennis stars are yet nobody can name a current top male tennis player who is gay. Why is that?
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post #2 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:31 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

There's typically more homophobia towards gay men than lesbians.

And even though they don't have to deal with teammates they do have to deal with endorsements and sponsorships.


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post #3 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:35 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

Discussion is one thing. Threads that turn into unsubstantiated rumor mills based on insight like footwear choice are another and will be closed.

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post #4 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:38 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

Gambill is gay and everyone knows that

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post #5 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:41 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

I know from a very good source of a certain ATP player who is gay It's just not profitable to be out of the closet these days.
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post #6 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:42 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

Wouldn't this make more sense as a thread at MTF?

And the WTA sells female sexuality for sure, but I doubt any player who has serious resistance to being presented that way would be forced into dress and makeup by the WTA.

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post #7 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:44 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

I think it should be OK for the top stars to come out because they pretty much have it made. Must be real awkward for a gay pro to come out on the ATp if he is not ranked very high, what with common locker rooms and males generally being more aggressive in their attitudes to sexuality. Also tennis players are quite conservative overall, being narrow-minded in their focus from a small age and growing up with a small group of people around them, so I can imagine it must be hard to find solidarity among your peers.
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post #8 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 06:58 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

It's because straight women generally are more accepting than straight men are of gay people. The men's locker room would be much more hostile to a gay man than the women's locker room would be/is to a lesbian. Plus, I do think there probably are more lesbians on the tennis tour in general than there are gay men.

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post #9 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 07:09 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

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post #10 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 07:14 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

More interesting than the whole ATP thing is the other issue you`ve mentioned, how the WTA has actually become less accepting of lesbian players over time.

It's absurd, the western world has gotten a lot more accepting and yet the world's most important women's sport association seems to be backtracking even though some of their biggest champions have been gay.

For some reason, lesbian tennis players don't come out anymore, Mauresmo was pretty much the last notable one. Of course, it is technically possible that since then none of the players have been gay but given the normal percentage among women that's very, very unlikely. There have to be at least 3-4 lesbian players in the Top 50 but they obviously don't feel like their surroundings are accepting enough to be open about it.
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post #11 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 07:19 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

They are afraid of Tipsarevic punching them?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripp View Post
I know from a very good source of a certain ATP player who is gay It's just not profitable to be out of the closet these days.
You must spill that tea or it didn't happen.
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post #12 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 07:21 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmie48 View Post
given the normal percentage among women that's very, very unlikely. There have to be at least 3-4 lesbian players in the Top 50 but they obviously don't feel like their surroundings are accepting enough to be open about it.
We do know of some (at least doubles stars). I don't know of a single ATP player, any format, when the percentages dictate there should be a few.
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post #13 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 07:26 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

I think it all boils down to corporate pressure. If you look at who earns the most in terms of endorsements, it's those players who are most "streamlined" to what corporations want... and being gay is obviously the opposite of that.
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post #14 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 07:27 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

But do ALL tennis fans really accept lesbian players? 'Cause me thinks they do not.
You just have to look at how defensive some people get about the subject to see that such assertion is simply not true.
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post #15 of 163 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2012, 07:31 PM
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Re: Why do tennis fans accept lesbian tennis stars yet no one in ATP out of closet?

It makes plenty of sense.

WTA = "strong is beautiful", right?

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