The 2012 Greggys – Straight Ally of the Year is Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe!
It’s wonderful to see so many straight people stepping up to the plate and speaking out for LGBT equality these days.
From President Barack Obama personally endorsing same-sex marriage this year to Brad Pitt writing big checks and doing a Human Rights Campaign ad in support of marriage equality. It’s also been great to have the continued high-profile support of such stalwarts as US Senator Dianne Feinstein, actress Pauley Perrette, the legendary Barbra Streisand, actor Daniel Radcliffe, singer Cyndi Lauper and many others.
But there is one guy who really stands out this year for his way with words, his passion and his honesty: Chris Kluwe of the Minnesota Vikings.
In June, Kluwe began doing radio ads for Minnesotans for Equality, the organization which led the fight to defeat an initiative that would have changed the Minnesota constitution to define marriage only between a man and a woman.
But his visibility as an LGBT activist really grew in September when he publicly tangled with Maryland Assembly Delegate Emmett C. Burns Jr.
Kluwe had blasted Burns in a withering, profanity-laced letter after the legislator complained to the owner of the Baltimore Ravens when linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo made public statements in support of same sex marriage.
The letter went viral and moved Kluwe, who is straight and the father of two daughters, to the forefront of the gay marriage debate.
‘I find it inconceivable that you are an elected official of Maryland’s state government,’ Kluwe wrote. ‘Your vitriolic hatred and bigotry make me ashamed and disgusted to think that you are in any way responsible for shaping policy at any level.’
‘I can assure you that gay people getting married will have zero effect on your life. They won’t come into your house and steal your children,’ he added.
Kluwe also assured the politician that he wouldn’t turn into a ‘lustful cockmonster’ if gay marriage were to become legal.
After the Minnesota ballot measure was defeated, Kluwe said: ‘There is work yet to be done, but we passed an important milestone. Ten, 15, 20 years from now, when our children ask us, ‘What did you do when it came time to fight for someone else?,’ we can tell them about Minnesota and Maryland and Maine, states where people finally said: Enough. Enough with the hate. Enough with the bigotry. Enough with the discrimination.’
‘We are all Americans, and we are all in this together. Without each other, we have nothing.’