Congrats to Tom Daley! The openly gay diver just won his fourth Commonwealth Games gold medal (with his diving partner Dan Goodfellow). Of course, winning a medal gives you a proverbial megaphone, and this Tom Daley gold medal win let the diver call for an end to the criminalization of homosexuality throughout the English Commonwealth.
This year’s Commonwealth Games — basically the Olympics but only for the 53 countries in the Commonwealth — was held in Australia, on the Gold Coast. Australia recently legalized same-sex marriage after a controversial yet non-binding postal vote. Daley told the BBC:
Coming to the Gold Coast and being able to live as an openly gay man is really important. You want to feel comfortable in who you are when you are standing on that diving board, and for 37 Commonwealth countries that are here participating that is not the case.
David Grevemberg, the chief executive of the Commonwealth Games Federation, has said they’ve been working to make the Games welcoming to all. Grevemberg said the last two events, in 2014 and 2018, have been “the most inclusive events in our movement’s history.” In 2014, John Barrowman kissed another man during the opening ceremonies.
Grevemberg added, “We hope that the Commonwealth Sports movement is playing a meaningful role in the wider global conversation around tolerance, empowerment and legal recognition for all.”
Daley also spoke out about his next event, the world series of diving, which takes place this May in notoriously homophobic Russia. He said “I’ve got to be [listed as] a husband on my visa. Going to Russia can be scary — you’ve got to compete in front of lots of people who know I’ve got a husband. You have to face those things and try and make change.”
What do you think about the Tom Daley gold medal win at the Commonwealth Games? Let us know below!
Featured image by Tom Daley