SAN FRANCISCO - September 19, 2012
The Last Closet, a web-based campaign and video project to combat homophobia in sports, launched today.
The Last Closet insists on hearing from all levels of the sports hierarchy about homophobia in men’s pro sports. Why has there never been an athlete in any of the top five American major professional sports leagues who has come out publicly while actively playing?
The Last Closet leads a series of campaigns to pave the way for this historic event to unfold.
Each month a new campaign commences. Web-viewers contact sports leaders, urging them to agree to an on-camera interview by The Last Closet Team.
Now premiering on TLC are 100′s of video clips catalogued from in-depth interviews with leaders in the growing movement to end homophobia in sports.
The current campaign’s “Featured Video” is a poignant interview with NFL Hall-of-Famer Michael Irvin who speaks about the profound impact his gay brother had on his life and career.
The first TLC campaign (the only two-month campaign) targets the commissioners of the five major pro sports leagues: baseball, basketball, football, hockey, and soccer. To date, all five commissioners have refused or have been unresponsive to repeated interview requests by The Last Closet Team. Through an aggressive social media campaign that utilizes the TLC website, Facebook, Twitter, email blasts, and phone outreach, The Last Closet sends a clear message to the commissioners: silence about homophobia is not acceptable.
Fawn Yacker, Project Director of The Last Closet asserts that: “It is imperative that our sports leaders speak out. We need the rallying cries of all who know the power of sports to demand that silence is not an option. For the 30-40% of gay youth who attempt suicide*, for any young person struggling with their sexual orientation, having a gay sports hero will make a world of difference.”
The Last Closet is a production of WomanVision, an award-winning documentary film company that promotes the values of understanding and diversity, providing positive role models and supportive images of societally marginalized people. Woman Vision’s most recent film, Training Rules, has won numerous awards and has been broadcast nationally. Woman Vision is a 501(c)3 Public Charity.
Fawn Yacker, Project Director
Jennifer Kelley, Project Co-Director
*Source for percentage of LGBT youth suicide attempts is the Suicide Prevention Network