To “B,” or not to “B?”
William Shakespeare originally penned this quote around 1600. I am pretty sure Shakespeare wasn’t referring to the “B” in LGBT, in his opening line of a soliloquy from his play Hamlet, act three, scene one.
Today, this simple question posed so long ago may be more apropos than ever.
As many individuals find their path of sexuality through life, they come to a crossroads. Sheryl Swoopes may be no exception. Swoopes is an original recruit with the formation of the WNBA. She has amassed over 2,000 career points, 500 career rebounds, 300 career assists and 200 career steals. In the 1996 summer Olympics she won a gold medal with the USA Basketball Women’s National Team (WNT).
She is a Three time WNBA MVP who in 1995, married her male, high school sweetheart. They divorced in 1999 not before having a son together, Jordan Eric Jackson. In October 2005, she announced she was gay. At the time Swoopes became one of the most high profile athletes in a team sport to do so publicly.
With her partner, former basketball player and Houston Coments assistant coach, Alisa Scott, Swoopes said she would one day like to marry and raise their son together. Swoopes said “it doesn’t change who I am. I can’t help who I fall in love with. No one can. … Discovering I’m gay just sort of happened much later in life. Being intimate with (Alisa) or any other woman never entered my mind. At the same time, I’m a firm believer that when you fall in love with somebody, you can’t control that.”
As of recent the question is of her true sexuality. This year she has announced her engagement to a man. This announcement is just six years after the media focus of her coming out. Many in the media are questioning if she is “no longer” a lesbian or if she was “really” a lesbian to begin with.
This is a dangerous approach as it focuses solely on her current relationship status to define her identity. I am pretty sure this is a prime example of the “B” in LGBT. The notion that at any given time a person’s sexual orientation is a snapshot of their entire sexual path erases bisexuality completely. The point is misunderstood and miss identifies an entire segment of people.
This “snapshot” is yet another hurdle that one most overcome in the understanding of personal choice versus natural choice. Swoopes or anyone else’s identity for that matter is not for anyone to pass judgment.
We humans are a diverse animal, hence, we all have our own individual set of finger prints….yet no one seems to pass judgment on this (yet). I for one do not care what orientation Sheryl Swoopes is, she is an accomplished athlete and mother that is merely trying to find her own path.
Spokes is a Richmonder and resident of Virginia for 10 years. He is a small business owner with a passion for outdoor activities - competing in numerous triathlons, sprints, olympics and half ironman distances.
“Somehow I learned that I belonged with my people and that I had a responsibility to contribute to them.”October 20, 2015
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