UFC fighter Rashad Evans champions gay marriage

Rashad Evans, a martial artist in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, has signed a pro-gay marriage petition launched by American Football players Chris Kluwe and Brendon Ayanbadejo.

The former UFC light heavyweight champion registered his support for gay marriage and expressed his feelings on the matter to the Outsports website:

“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.”

Evans said he felt it was particularly important for him to speak out against gay marriage bans because of his profession:

“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 further explained his support for gay marriage:

“What people overlook is that it isn’t a sex issue, it’s a love issue. There’s no justifiable reason for trying to get in the way of two people who love each other.”

He added:

“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.”

The petition is intended to persuade the United States Supreme Court not to reinstate Proposition 8, an amendment to the California Constitution which banned gay marriage. The proposition was introduced in 2008 but was declared to be in breach of the US Constitution in 2010. The Supreme Court is currently reviewing the law after a campaign by Proposition 8 supporters.

Other stars who have publicly opposed Proposition 8 recently include Clint Eastwood.


Photo of Rashad Evans (left) and UFC commentator Mike Goldberg by Utter Truth via Flickr under a creative commons license

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