As pro football kicks off its 2012 NFL season, the San Francisco 49ers become the first pro football team to kick off an ‘It Gets Better’ Video.

The last few years have taught us a lot about teen bullying in America. We all have to work to put an end to it at every level.

Fortunately, pro sports teams are partnering with us, from pro hockey to pro baseball. This fall, late in November, you will see SFGN partner with the Florida Panthers in a special night we have planned during a game at the Bank Atlantic Center. The Panthers are an exciting, dynamic, young hockey team, and we are pleased to cultivate this relationship with them.

This past season we have also worked with the Florida Marlins, whose owners and PR teams reached out to your LGBT newspaper with advertisements and ticket giveaways. Maybe the Marlins did not grab the brass ring in this, their first season at a new stadium, but they sure tried, investing ever so much in talented athletes and a spectacular ball yard for baseball.

The bottom line is that gay life embraces athletics and sports, from swimming to soccer to softball leagues. LGBT life embraces our community. We are a part of it, not apart from it. In fact, just as I played baseball for years, the other publisher in town, Bobby Blair of the Agenda, played tennis.  There are gay Olympians, and gay men and women who make their mark athletically in all sports.

Let’s thank the San Francisco 49ers for doing this video, and let’s encourage all sports and businesses to remember all those who are wrongly brutalized, unjustly bullied, and unfairly labeled as outcasts. It never should have happened in the first place, and we can’t as a community let it happen anymore.

Thank you,
Norm Kent