Is D2 gay enough?

A gay softball team overseen by The North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance , D2, finished 2nd in the Gay World Series  in 2008, but had its placing nullified because of allegations that the team exceeded the limit  of non-gay players.

The San Francisco-based team the men played on, D2, was disqualified after others at the tournament questioned their sexuality and filed a protest. Under questioning, the men, Stephen Apilado, Laron Charles and John Russ, were evasive or declined to discuss their sexuality, according to the organization.

For example, minutes of the hearing say that Charles claimed to be gay but acknowledged being married to a woman, and Apilado initially said he was both gay and straight but then acknowledged being more attracted to women.

[…] In addition to the three plaintiffs, the team had two designated straight players. The organization says it has always considered bisexuals to meet the definition of “gay” for roster purposes, but the minutes also note that one official involved in the decision to disqualify D2 commented that “this is not a bisexual world series. This is a gay world series.”

I support the NAGAAA’s right to limit the number of non-homosexual players per team.  I believe every private organization has a right to determine the characteristics of its membership.  They do have that right, legally and in principle.

However, if the rules state “bi-sexual” qualifies as ‘gay enough’ then objectors to the sexual status of Apilado, Charles, and Russ have no legitimate complaint.  Unfortunately, it seems as though there has been persistent suspicion that the team had been stacking its team with straight ringers for some time.

The official is [politically in]correct when he says, “this is not a bisexual world series. This is a gay world series.”  But until the rules reflect that, there is no recourse to suspicion of straight ringers.  The kind of organization this is does not lend itself to certainty of legitimate membership.  There is no obvious attribute that lends itself to examination, like skin color, or gender.  “[Q]uestions remain about the way the softball association applied its rule, including whether the questions asked about the men’s sexuality at a protest hearing were unnecessarily intrusive”.  If the rules state no more than 2 non-gay players per team, then given the type of organization this is, I believe no question is too intrusive.  I would object, as would most people, if the NAGAAA required “physical” proof of the member’s homosexuality.  Therefore, it must be determined by questioning.

The solution is obvious, exclude all non-homosexuals from the league.

Comments

  1. What about the all straight league? Oh wait, that would be discriminating…

  2. Terrance H. says:

    I have no earthly clue what this post is all about, or why you wrote about gay sporting events. LOL.

    • David got it on this one. This is really about my unwaivering support of freedom of association. There are groups out there who have been forced to accept members outside the purpose of their stated organization, and I think that’s wrong.

      There is a double standard afoot on issues like this. When black groups desire strict black membership, they are applauded. When white groups desire strict white membership, they are put on a watch list and branded supremicists. When homosexuals desire a strict homosexual membership, they have the courage to stand proud. When heterosexuals desire a strict heterosexual membership, they are branded homophobic bigotted haters.

      I support any section of society to form any group they want without fear of being looked down upon no matter that their reason for desiring the closed membership. Thats all.

  3. . When black groups desire strict black membership, they are applauded. When white groups desire strict white membership, they are put on a watch list and branded supremicists.

    I suspect you don’t have much appreciation for what it means to be part of an historically oppressed group and how comparing a minority group coming together for reasons of solidarity and support to a majority group doing so is comparing apples to oranges. It’s a different thing.

    I’d encourage you to consider spending some time amongst a group of historically oppressed people, befriending them, listening to what they have to say, their stories and histories… walk a little ways in their shoes with them, THEN reconsider your position from a place of being informed and aware. Just an idea…

    • Dan, are you trying to say that whites and straights can’t have exclusive organizations because they have not been historically oppressed?

      • More directly than my answer below: Yes, I’m saying that majority groups from non-oppressed backgrounds having exclusive is a bad idea. It’s not the same thing as minority/oppressed groups having support groups.

        Beyond that, it’s rare that minority groups have the exclusivity measure you mention. This league is open to gay and straights, right? The NAACP, black colleges, and other historically “black” organizations are open to those from other races. That’s not exclusive.

        • I would make the argument that it’s the group’s choice as to the people in their organization. If the gay baseball team decided to be all gay, and the NAACP decided to be all black that’s 100% fine with me.

          This is a freedom of assembly issue. You are saying that groups are different like apples and oranges. That’s true, but just because there may be more apples than oranges or that the oranges faced hardships, that doesn’t mean the apples can’t have an all apple baseball team, bowling league, book club, or whatever.

    • I find it awfully presumptuous of you to speculate to the extent of my exposure to minorities.

      • I don’t know what your history is with minorities. I said “I SUSPECT” (ie, it is my hunch, my guess, based upon your words) “that you don’t have much appreciation for what it means to be part of a black or gay community.” Am I mistaken? Do you frequently eat with, worship with, go to the homes of black folk and gay folk?

        Dan, are you trying to say that whites and straights can’t have exclusive organizations because they have not been historically oppressed?

        I’m saying that it is NOT the same thing and I think this is one thing that many white/straight people miss. They don’t live with suspicion, bitterness, hatred, misunderstanding of the larger community on a daily basis and thus, just don’t really have much appreciation for that which they’ve never experienced.

        Is it your opinion that it’s possible to have a good appreciation of what it’s like to walk in the shoes of someone from a vastly different background? Would you say to the rape victim, “Well, I’m sure it’s not as bad as all that. You’re still alive, after all and no permanent harm has been done, so buck up, things are really pretty good for you! I can know this NOT because I’ve lived through anything like that, but just because, you know, I’m pretty smart about these sorts of things…”? I’m quite sure that you wouldn’t endorse such treatment of someone who’s gone through something so far outside your experience.

        My point is that we don’t know the experiences of those with whom we don’t closely live. So, tell me, am I wrong? Do you closely associate (not sit beside at work, or have a cousin) with the black and/or gay community (ie, not an isolated individual here and there)?

        Nonetheless, I apologize if it sounded like I was presuming something. I was taking a guess based upon your words, so maybe it was presumptuous. My apologies.

  4. Dan Trabue says:

    You have the right to free association, I’m not saying you can’t associate with whomever you wish. I’m saying that forming a deliberately “Whites Only” club is not the same thing as forming a black support group like NAACP, which is also inclusive to white folk. I’m saying there is a significant difference between being part of a majority with no oppression in their background.

    Apples. Oranges.

    • Why do you keep trying to compare “private social clubs/organizations” and “support groups”, of which the NAACP is not? You are the one trying to make the false comparison. It is rather telling that you don’t make the distinction, not that the distinction matters.

      Additionally I find it sad for you that you think white straight people already have their own thing: church.

  5. Dan Trabue says:

    In fact, in most places in the US, straight whites frequently practice the liberty to meet only with other straight whites. It’s called “Churches on Sunday Morning.”

  6. Dan Trabue says:

    ? I’m just pointing out what Dr Martin Luther King pointed out: “it is appalling that the most segregated hour of Christian America is eleven o’clock on Sunday morning.” I further find it sad that there are rarely gay folk openly welcomed in our congregations and how they are too often treated if they DO go.

    I find those to be sad facts. Do you disagree?

    I’m not sure of your point about the NAACP. It’s a civil rights organization – one that was founded to support civil rights for all people, black folk specifically included. What do you think the NAACP is?

  7. Dan Trabue says:

    ? Again, I’m not sure what you’re speaking of. Did I SAY that sexual desires are the same thing as race? No, I didn’t.

    All I said was…

    1. I find it sad that our Sunday mornings are generally pretty segregated affairs. Do you find that to be a sad reality?

    2. That suggesting those groups that are in the majority and have not experienced oppression can morally justify meeting as a support group is not the same as minority/oppressed groups meeting.

    Do you disagree with that? Do you see NO reason at all why there is appropriately an NAACP but an NAAWP is morally inappropriate?

    3. That gay/minority types of organizations tend to be open to all, thus that they’re not exclusive.

    • I’m about ready to wash my hands of you all together. If you are not equating race and sexual desires THEN STOP MAKING THE COMPARISON!

      Lastly, the NAACP is not a support group, it is an activist organization. I’m not arguing whether that is good or bad, the point is PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS should have the ability to have the ABSOLUTE SAY IN SHO THEY ALLOW FOR MEMBERSHIP, regardless of the DEMOGRAPHIC of the proposed membership.

  8. Dan Trabue says:

    You seem to be getting unduly overheated about this, for reasons that aren’t clear to me. Where have I equated race and sexual desires? I HAVE listed them as two groups that have been ostracized and oppressed. Is THAT what you mean by “equating race and sexual desires?” That, to me, isn’t equating the two, it is pointing to two minority groups that have been historically oppressed.

    Do you disagree that both have faced oppression/been ostracized/demonized?

    About the NAACP, fair enough, it is a civil rights activist group, I was using “support” in the loose sense of they are acting in ways that support minorities, but if you don’t like me referring to them as a “support group,” I shall refrain, with apologies.

    They are a Civil Rights promotion group who are inclusive in their membership as they have strived over the years to promote civil rights, especially for minorities. Fair enough?

    And I have not said that any private group doesn’t have the right to meet with whomever they wish to meet with. I’m saying that morally, it is wrong to compare a group of whites who wish to meet for reasons of race to groups of minorities who organize to support (through membership, through activism, through community, etc) minorities. It’s an apples and oranges comparison.

    Do you disagree with that?

    And again, I apologize for whatever it is I’m saying that is upsetting you so, it’s not my intent.

  9. Dan, you begrudgingly allow for any group to organize and exclude, but with the caveat that if the group is exclusively white or exclusively heterosexual then there is reason to be suspicious.

    If you go far enough back in history, every group was oppressed at some point in time. So I suppose we are all allowed to exclude on your view, right?

  10. Dan Trabue says:

    John…

    you begrudgingly allow for any group to organize and exclude, but with the caveat that if the group is exclusively white or exclusively heterosexual then there is reason to be suspicious.

    Suspicious is your word, not mine. I said it was generally a bad idea.

    How about some specifics? What group is it you are supporting meeting?

    I mean, I imagine both you and I agree that the KKK has the right in the US to meet – white straight folk all meeting, it’s legal – but you and I also probably agree that it is a poor idea – and by that, I mean, immoral, wrong, wrong-headed, sinful, unjust – to meet for the purpose of PROMOTING one race over another, of denigrating a whole race of people – or other religions or gay folk, etc – as the KKK does. Right? We both agree that this is a bad idea.

    Beyond that, what white, straight group is meeting (ie, meeting specifically AS a white straight group), and what is their purpose?

    The NAACP meets to end oppression/injustice for minorities and I’d hope that we could agree that this is a good ideal (even if you disagree with their techniques). The IDEAL of the NAACP is a morally good one. The IDEAL of the KKK is a morally bad one.

    I’m just saying I can see no legitimate moral reason why white straight people could/would want to meet SPECIFICALLY AS a white straight group of people.

    What exactly are you defending with this post? The legal right for groups (even groups like the KKK) to meet? We agree on that point. The moral righteousness of groups like the KKK meeting? We probably both agree that they are not worth defending from a moral point of view. So, I guess I’m not clear what it is exactly you’re defending.

  11. “So, I guess I’m not clear what it is exactly you’re defending”

    http://truthinreligionandpolitics.com/2011/06/02/is-d2-gay-enough/#comment-2169

    Try to keep up.

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