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Even though there are 11 out male athletes competing in the Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games, none of them are Americans. What gives?
Jim Buzinski, co-founder of the LGBT sports site Outsports, tackled this very question in a video (above). In the video, Buzinski said that he knows of a male, American Olympian who is gay, but who is not out. He also mentions that the only openly gay American Olympian to compete while out was equestrian competitor Robert Dover who started in 1984 and competed in six Olympics winning bronze medals for team dressage in ’92, ’96, 2000 and 2004. Sadly, no other openly gay or bisexual American men have competed since then.
While that’s a bummer, Buzinski mentions that there ARE seven openly lesbian/bisexual Olympic athletes currently competing and that American sports, while still largely queerphobic, has at least had some openly gay pro-sports players (like short-lived NFL draft pick Michael Sam) whereas there has never been an openly gay European football (soccer) player in the English premiere or other major soccer or pro-sports leagues overseas.