One week after Carl Nassib of the Las Vegas Raiders became the first active NFL player to come out as gay, the league is beating the Pride Month drum in a new campaign.
“Football is gay,” a video proclaims, followed by the words, “Football is lesbian.”
The video then lists multiple characteristics from transgender to bisexual, tossing in a few words like “tough” and “power” along with way.
“Football is beautiful. Football is queer. Football is life. Football is exciting. Football is culture. Football is transgender. Football is heart. Football is power. Football is tough. Football is bisexual. Football is strong. Football is freedom. Football is American. Football is accepting. Football is everything. Football is for everyone,” the video says.
If you love this game, you are welcome here. Football is for all. Football is for everyone.
The NFL stands by the LGBTQ+ community today and every day.
— NFL (@NFL) June 28, 2021
“If you love this game, you are welcome here. Football is for all. Football is for everyone. The NFL stands by the LGBTQ+ community today and every day,” the NFL said in a tweet.
The ad promotes the Trevor Project, a national organization that says it provides crisis intervention services to LGBT youth.
Nassib announced a $100,000 donation to the group last week, which was later matched by the league, according to The Hill.
The video caused a buzz on Twitter.
— Jim Hanson (@JimHansonDC) June 28, 2021
“football is gay”…”football is lesbian”…”football is queer”…”football is transgender”
are we being punked lol https://t.co/37Bwncy84S
— joshua gutterman tranen (@jdgtranen) June 28, 2021
thinking about the room of marketing execs and months of focus groups and hours of pitches that all culminated in like one 50 year old suit guy saying “yeah alright, ok. football is gay” https://t.co/TDX9dOdJRe
— Liz Franczak (@liz_franczak) June 28, 2021
“I am proud of the clear message this spot sends to the NFL’s LGBTQ+ fans: This game is unquestionably for you,” Sam Rapoport, the NFL’s senior director of diversity, equity and inclusion, told Outsports.
“I will be playing its first line over and over in my head all season.”
“It’s OK to not fully understand the LGBTQ+ experience for you to be an ally. You don’t need to be an expert in all the terms. You just need to try,” he told USA Today last week.
NFL chief marketing officer Tim Ellis said the video carries a message of major importance.
“This spot is about celebrating Pride, and the importance of inclusion. It’s imperative that we use our voice and leverage the NFL platform to drive positive change, which includes supporting what our players care about and what they stand for,” he said.
“I’ve been meaning to do this for a while now, but I finally feel comfortable enough to get it off my chest. I really have the best life, I’ve got the best family, friends and job a guy could ask for,’ he said.
Nassib said he thought it was important to make a private decision public.
“I’m a pretty private person so I hope you guys know that I’m really not doing this for attention. I just think that representation and visibility are so important,” he said.
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