United Nations Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay announced Monday that she believes gay soccer players at this year’s World Cup in Brazil should be open about their sexuality.
“That’s the only way they will find the right to sexual orientation accepted. They are role models, and it’s important for them to send this message to their fans as well” Pillay said, who later added she doesn’t believe anyone, in any respect, should have to hide who they really are.
This revelation came on the heels of an earlier meeting on equality in sports where Pillay mentioned that true equality could only be the result of deeper, lasting commitment on the part of public figures.
“… combating discrimination requires more than superficial measures that do not change attitudes …” Pillay eloquently stated during the meeting before calling out Brazil (this year’s World Cup host) and 2022 host Qatar on the extravagant spending for the event, and the consistent ignoring of human rights.
Sporting events are about the companionship of other human beings, and engendering friendly competition among the countries of the world is one of the best ways we have of understanding and accepting those from different cultures and walks of life we don’t understand.
Pillay summed up the meeting by saying “Sporting events should celebrate the joy of human potential, not generate pain and abuse.”