Excellence. Friendship. Respect. These are the official values of the Olympic movement. And every two years, when the best athletes and coaches in the world gather to compete in peace, we are reminded of the immeasurable importance these values have in every-day life.
On Monday, however, 34-year-old Jason Collins, did more than just remind us. He changed sports forever.
By announcing he was gay in an environment infamous for looking the other way, the National Basketball League veteran made a change to the sporting community that will forever affect the way people think.
He told Sports Illustrated: “The most you can do is stand up for what you believe in.”
In acting on his words, Mr. Collins has displayed the kind of courage the Olympic movement is firmly based upon.
Sport unites us all.
Sure, there will be debate. But when it’s all said and done, a new world of potential has opened up in the sporting community and otherwise because of the courage Collins has displayed.
Athletes and coaches at every level, in every country, practice and compete together to get better at what they do … to find excellence.
We become better people, better athletes, better parents and better coaches – because of sport.
Thanks to Jason Collins, we now live in a better world – because of sport.
From twin brother and NBA athlete Jarron Collins
You never know what a new day brings. Hope everyone has a good week and is able to handle the challenges and obstacles that they may face.
— jarron collins (@jarronctwin) April 29, 2013
Four-time Olympic medallist Adam van Koeverden
— Adam van Koeverden (@vankayak) April 29, 2013
Olympic speed skater Anastasia Bucsis
— Anastasia Bucsis (@anastasure) April 29, 2013
The White House, Bill Clinton, and David Stern among those praising NBA player Jason Collins, who announced he’s gay: cbc.sh/WDsZInj
— CBCSports (@cbcsports) April 29, 2013
CBC host George Stroumboulopoulos
— G. Stroumboulopoulos (@strombo) April 29, 2013