In an exclusive cover story for OUT, the NFL athlete describes how he became the unlikely face of Marriage Equality.
October 2, 2012 (NEW YORK) — On September 7, the Internet began buzzing with the name Chris Kluwe. That’s when the Minnesota Vikings punter’s letter to Maryland state delegate Emmett C. Burns Jr. was published on line and quickly went viral. A week earlier Burns had told the Baltimore Ravens to “order” linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo to cease advocating for marriage equality in Maryland. With that letter, Kluwe became the latest of 28 current NFL players who have expressed support for gay rights. For OUT’s November cover story, Kluwe talked with OUT contributor Cyd Zeigler about stereotypes, and his video game obsession, and how he came to fight for equality.
“I’ve always relished breaking that stereotype of the dumb jock athlete because while I enjoyed athletics growing up, I also enjoyed reading and video games, and athletic sport is not what defines me as a person,” Kluwe tells OUT. “I think as more and more generations start rising through the NFL, a lot of these kids see that it’s OK to be something other than an athlete.”
For Kluwe, taking a stand on gay rights is as instinctual as planting his foot into the ball. “It’s all about the Golden Rule,” he says. “Treat other people as you want to be treated. It’s that simple. It’s something that needs to be spoken about, and it’s something I can do while fulfilling my job as a football player.”
Read the full OUT November 2012 cover story now at OUT.com.