At the time of writing, there are still no out gay professional footballers in the Premier League, although various agents have hinted that there are players who have not, for whatever reasons, chosen to come out yet.
This is unheard of in pretty much any other industry.
Although women could still be called gay if they were prostitutes as that meaning had not yet 100% disappeared.Since then, gay, meaning homosexual male, has steadily driven out all the other definitions that have floated about through time and of course also has gradually begun supplementing the word ‘lesbian’ as referring to women who are homosexual.There is a huge opportunity here for football to step up and become an ally to LGBT people across the world – players, officials, and fans – people who in lots of cases live in countries where homosexuality is at best taboo or in the worst cases illegal.Atkin is helping football take its next step in this area, an area where until now its support has been largely hypothetical.The word’s original meaning meant something to the effect of “joyful”, “carefree”, “full of mirth”, or “bright and showy”.
However, around the early parts of the 17th century, the word began to be associated with immorality.
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Since Ryan Atkin came out as gay last week, the primary response has been to ask why it matters.
It turns out that, beyond what I hesitantly would call the “LGBT community”, there was quite a flaccid reaction to the news in general. ” said one person; “Can’t believe this is a headline” said another. I agree with the Football Association’s head of refereeing Neale Barry when he says it is “an important moment” for football.
To me, the relevance of this story is self-evident but I suppose if I were a cisgendered heterosexual person, it might be less so.
In terms of the sexual meaning of the word, a “gay man” no longer just meant a man who had sex with a lot of women, but now started to refer to men who had sex with other men.