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(July 25, 2005)

You are viewing the archives for February 2010

Blood(less) brothers

Feb 06, 2010 by libjpn | 5 Comments

I've followed the story of Scott Fujita from when he was drafted by the Chiefs, twigging onto the Japanese name. Japanese-American athletes in team sports like hen's teeth (the examples of Paul Kariya and his brother is balanced out by the story of Taro Tsujimoto. However, finding out that Fujita wasn't "really" Japanese (and then having him play for the most evil team in the world aka The Dallas Cowboys) had me relegate his story to the interesting trivia category, an area of my brain that threatens to take over everything else. Definitely my bad.

 When the request arrived in an e-mail last fall, Scott Fujita replied immediately and without reservation. A friend had asked him his opinion. He answered. That was how Fujita looked at it.

The swiftness and certitude of Fujita’s reply stunned Dave Zirin, the friend who sent the e-mail. Zirin had not made a typical request, not for an NFL linebacker. He was looking for a professional athlete to lend his name to the National Equality March, a rally in Washington for gay rights.

On Sunday, Fujita will reach the pinnacle of his football career, playing linebacker for the New Orleans Saints in the Super Bowl. Fujita describes it as “this small moment in time where you have a platform to do some good things.’’ Last fall, that included speaking out in support of gay rights, a rare step in a professional sporting culture that often turns social stances into landmine

Here's another article about his background that may be of interest. While I realize with my head that certain backgrounds and heritages do not automatically guarantee a person of courage, moral belief, or even a broadened outlook on life, to read a story like this has me remember how my heart has believed it in the past.