I came across this today at Buzzfeed.
Last week on the 4th, 31-year-old Puerto Rican boxer Orlando Cruz publicly announced that he is gay.
Needless to say (but I’m saying anyway): 1. I have never heard of him before. 2. I don’t even follow boxing, or any other sport for that matter. 3. Initially I was only noting him here because he’s whoa-so-damn-hot.
But that’s ok. I mean look at him. Caliente!
But having read about him naturally I’m also in awe of this guy for his bravery, for risking so much. Being openly gay for anyone can be hard enough. But for a famous person, and not only that but an athlete and in such a macho sport; I can’t begin to imagine how painfully difficult the decision must had been. What’s more, he is still competing. I just read in the really short Wikipedia entry of his (just three short paragraphs and with no photo; hopefully that will change soon) that he is the first boxer to ‘come out the closet as gay while still active professionally‘.
According to an article in myboxingfans.com, reaction was largely positive across social media, but:
Some Twitter messages expressed concern for Cruz’s safety and wondered whether other boxers will be reluctant to fight him. Dommys Delgado, president of the Boxing Commission of Puerto Rico, brushed aside those comments.
“Orlando has proven to be an excellent boxer with very good chances of becoming a world champion,” she said. “We do know that it is a very macho sport. Those who don’t want to fight with him, well, don’t fight.”
Cruz said he is prepared for the fallout from his announcement, saying many boxers had already suspected he was gay but gave him privacy.
‘Very macho sport‘. Yeah, no kidding. I hope this guy will get all the support he needs, that not only gay organizations but all his fans and friends will actively let him know they are there for him. And that as many people as possible in his sport rally round him, and keep tabs on how he’s doing, how he’s treated. Can’t help but think there are many tough months and years ahead for him, this brave guy.
It’s great he has the full support of his family, as well as that of his trainer and manager, as that’s the most important foundation. He said something poignant about his dad which struck me: “Like every father, he wants his son to be a full-blooded man, but he is aware of my preference, my taste.”
On a side note, so cool of Puerto Rico that the president of their Boxing Commission is a woman.