NFL players have responded positively, for the most part, to Michael Sam since he came out on Sunday. The same can’t be said for some of the players in the Canadian Football League.
Two players offered up some anti-gay remarks on social media on Monday and the CFL didn’t take their comments lightly. Montreal Alouettes wide receiver Arland Bruce and Winnipeg Blue Bombers defensive tackle Bryant Turner Jr. were both fined undisclosed amount by the league on Tuesday for their inflammatory comments.
The CFL released a statement chastising Bruce and Turner for their comments on Tuesday and expressing the league’s support for openly gay players.
“The comments made by these players are extremely disappointing and do not represent the CFL’s views or the views of the vast majority of our players,” CFL Commissioner Mark Cohon said. “The CFL is supportive of openly gay athletes in professional sports and we commend the courage shown by Michael Sam. During the off-season, we have been working with an organization that specializes in this subject and look forward to announcing a formal partnership with them in the near future.”
Both players expressed disapproval of Sam’s sexual orientation, including Bruce telling the reigning SEC Defensive Player of the Year to “get on your knees and submit to God,” according to the Montreal Gazette. Both posts have since been deleted.
Bruce amended his comments a bit on Tuesday, saying he would welcome Sam into the Alouettes’ locker room but refusing to back off of his beliefs.
“I want to say I am sorry for the comments I have made,” Bruce told CF Magazine. “I made the comments and have my own opinions. I would be very open to having Michael Sam in our locker room as he is a good football player.
“My personal belief is that God made Adam and Eve and not Adam and Steve and I will stand by my opinion even if it upsets my fans. I do want to say sorry to those I have offended, but I stand by my comments.”
Neither Bruce or Turner will likely have to worry about sharing a locker room with Sam anytime soon, as the Missouri defensive end will likely be picked in the upcoming NFL draft despite his falling draft stock.
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