He may no longer be a champion inside of the octagon, but Anderson Silva is becoming a champion for gay rights. In an interview earlier this year with Brazilian magazine Trip, Anderson Silva reveals that he used to be bullied when he was younger for taking ballet lessons. This has echoes of GSP, who used gymnastics (And eventually martial arts) as an outlet to deal with the bullying he had to endure during his youth.
Many MMA fans have fallen for the picture that Chael likes to paint of Brazil as being these primitive mud-people, but in reality they’re more progressive than some people realize. The same can be said about MMA as a whole.
The UFC always talks about taking steps to make themselves the 5th major sporting organization in the same tier as MLB, NFL, NHL and NBA. Out of that lineup, only the UFC and the NBA have had openly gay athletes during their careers (Jason Collins in the NBA and Liz Carmouche in the UFC.) Only 8 other athletes have come out after their careers.
It would shock a lot of people to learn that the UFC is a lot more accepting of homosexuality than other more established sports, since they still have the image of barbaric cagefighters rather than professional athletes to those who are naive to the sport.
Anderson on prejudice towards homosexuals in MMA…
“I don’t think there’s prejudice, but there’s a lot of homosexuals in mixed martial arts. There are a lot of them who haven’t yet come out. [If they were to come out,] nowadays it’s so silly to not express your feelings. As long as you respect people’s spaces, and respect their limits. You have to live your life in peace and no one has anything to do with that.”
Anderson on training with homosexuals…
“I would train with a gay man. As long as he respected me, it’s all right. I don’t think much of it. The fact that guy is gay doesn’t mean he’s going to accost you. He can be gay, have a relationship, live among guys who aren’t gay. he can do whatever he wants with his private life.”
Anderson on his own sexuality…
“Sometimes people think I’m gay. A lot of people have asked me if I’m gay. I answer, “Look, not to my knowledge. But I’m still young, it could be that in the future I’ll find out that I’m gay. I take good care of my things, I put everything in a bag, I use soap, I put on a cream after training. People think it’s capricious. To each his own. Doesn’t mean you’re more man or less man, more gay or less gay.”
The two major take aways from this are that if you take care of your stuff, put things in bags, and use soap… you might be gay. Also, if you want your kid to be a future mma legend, sign them up for ballet and gymnastics.
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