Professional sports isn't exactly bursting with athletes willing to rally around LGBT issues. No major American professional athlete has ever come out of the closet while still playing and locker rooms are much better places for hyper-masculinity than outspoken acceptance.
So it took an impressive amount of courage for the Denver Nuggets' Kenneth Faried to make a video declaring his support for civil unions and same-sex marriage, while seated between his two mothers. A bill to create civil unions is currently being debated in Colorado's Legislature.
"It gives people -- gays and lesbians -- the right to make decisions on their own, if they want to get married," he says of civil unions. "And let them choose who they want to be with."
Faried, a bruising 6-foot-8 power forward known as "The Manimal" and a Denver fan favorite, personalizes his advocacy by describing his own process of acceptance while growing up in New Jersey, in a household with two moms. "It was at first shaky, especially tough because I didn't know what to expect. But a lot of people were supportive of their relationship. A lot of people would help me to understand that it's OK."
Faried says his father actually played a large role in his acceptance of his mom's lifestyle. "I didn't understand how could two [people] of the same sex could be together and he helped me understand it."
Faried's moms were married in New Jersey and 2007 and have been together for 11 years. Waudda Faried suffers from lupus and the family described in the video how civil union protections have helped them with her care.
The Nuggets' star, though, does admit to still being uncomfortable with one aspect of all this: "A lot of people [are] saying civil union... I don’t like it being called that," he told Denver's KDVR.
"I can get married to a female and it can be called a marriage. Why can't a female be married to a female and male be married to a male and it be called a marriage? You still have the same thing, same love and happiness."
Follow Jonathan Anker on Twitter @JonFromHLN