Mixed Martial Arts champ Suga backs gay rights, same-sex marriage

UFC champion light-heavyweight fighter Rashad ‘Suga’ Evans has become the latest high profile sports star to sign onto a brief urging the US Supreme Court to back the rights of same-sex couples to marry

Mixed Martial Arts champ Suga backs gay rights, same-sex marriage
10 March 2013

Ultimate Fighting Championship light-heavyweight fighter Rashad ‘Suga’ Evans has gone public with his support for LGBT equality and the right of same-sex couples to marry.

Evans, who was narrowly defeated by Antonia Rogerio Noguera at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vagas in UFC 156 on February 2, made his support known by signing onto a legal brief to the US Supreme Court in support of marriage equality that had been put forward by NFL players Chris Kluwe and Brendon Ayanbadejo.

Evans, who will next fight Dan Evans at UFC 161 on June 15 at Winnipeg’s MTS Center told Outsports.com that he had never understood why some people were so opposed to LGBT people having the same rights as everyone else.

‘I’ve never been a homophobe, never understood what that is all about,’ Evans told Outsports.

‘I knew some people who were gay and never cared about their sexuality. But at the same time, I didn’t fully understand the issues around gay people until my friend [Brendon Ayanbadejo] started telling me about his full public support for gay marriage. We talked about the issue and I decided its not enough to not be against a minority – if you want things to go better for them you have to speak up with them’

Evans said that he hoped that his support, coming from such a macho sports background, would open minds.

‘I’m a UFC fighter, a macho-type sport. I am a heterosexual guy in a tough macho sport, which is exactly the reason I feel a duty to say I support gay marriage and gay rights,’ Evans said.

‘I have nothing to gain personally from supporting this issue, and that’s the point. Society as a whole is better when there is equality, and I want to live in a country where everyone has the same rights because we all benefit from that.

‘What people overlook is that is isn’t a sex issue, its a love issue. There’s no justifiable reason for trying to get in the way of two people who love each other. I have kids. I don’t want them growing up in a society where they, or their friends, could be second class citizens based on which person they fall in love with or who they want to be happy with.’

Earlier this year UFC 157 saw its first fight between two women’s fighters in which the sport’s first openly lesbian fighter, Liz Carmouche, lost to Ronda Rousey.

In 2009 UFC president Dana White moved quickly to apologize for using a homophobic slur against a critic and has encouraged gay and lesbian fighters to get involved in the sport.

Earlier this month, Fallon Fox, an MMA fighter from a different league, came out publicly as a transgender woman.



No thumbnail available

Japan’s world boxing champ struggles with gender identity

Go Shindo conquers bullying, alcoholism and suicidal thoughts to come out
No thumbnail available

Turkey cancels Eurovision Song Contest over lesbian kiss

Gay activists are claiming Turkey's official television channel will not show the annual competition over Finland's entry standing up for marriage equality
No thumbnail available

Miami Beach hosts 8th annual party for LGBTI people of color

‘In 2014, I wouldn’t want this to be perceived as an event just more for minorities. I’d like to make this as an opportunity for everyone’
No thumbnail available

Kylie's coming to Sydney's Mardi Gras

Star celebrates 25 years in pop at the LGBTQI festival
New Jersey governor taken to task on gay marriage by opponent with lesbian daughter

New Jersey governor taken to task on gay marriage by opponent with lesbian daughter

'My daughter, who is openly gay, is not a political agenda'
No thumbnail available

LA Gay & Lesbian Center cancels Deathtrap due to censorship

Estate of playwright Ira Levin prohibited male leads from having physical relationship onstage - despite their being engaged in an affair
No thumbnail available

Ellen DeGeneres achieves ratings gold with 43.7 million Oscar viewers

Awards telecast scores its highest ratings in 14 years while her live post-Oscar  show nabs highest ratings ever for daytime gabfest
No thumbnail available

Ricky Martin laments Puerto Rico Supreme Court's upholding of gay adoption ban

Justices vote 5-4 in case of lesbian who sought to adopt partner's baby
No thumbnail available

California activist counters 'shoot the gays' initiative with Shellfish Suppression Act

The Bible condemns both gay sex and shellfish as 'abominations'
No thumbnail available

London Gay Men's Chorus are Proud2Be gay

Gay choir join latest online campaign to support LGBT youth