Tim Joyce writes about ending sports' Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy for Real Clear Sports. While people talk about sports leading to cultural change in racial equality in the '40s and '50s, Joyce points out that it was the military, not sports, that lead the way; And hopefully sports will follow the military's (hopefully) impending end of DADT:
So if the military indeed follows through and abolishes DADT, will team sports follow suit and allow their athletes to feel free and liberated if they do decide to live openly? After all, the armed forces has played a leading role in advancing the abolishment of discrimination before. After blacks and whites fought alongside each other in the battlefield, the specter of segregated baseball seemed ridiculous and inane following World War II. This helped pave the way for Jackie Robinson's heroic and historic entrance with the Brooklyn Dodgers.
Afterall, if the macho guys in the military can sleep in the same bunk as a gay guy, surely macho athletes can shower with one.
You might quibble that sports doesn't have a codified policy on gays that can be overturned; But when not a single commissioner of the Big Four sports leagues will talk openly about welcoming gay athletes and coaches, I would disagree.