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Champion swimmer claims he was kicked off team for being gay

Patrick Kelleher September 30, 2019
Gay swimmer Abrahm DeVine

Tom Pennington/Getty

A university swimming champion in the United States has claimed that he was axed from the Stanford swimming and diving team for being gay.

Abrahm DeVine came out publicly last year in an interview with Swimming World magazine, where he spoke about the challenges of being gay in sport.

It seems that those challenges have not gone away since coming out, as DeVine has alleged that he was dropped from the Stanford swimming team because of his sexuality.

Abrahm DeVine: Being kicked off team ‘comes down to the fact that I am gay’.

Writing on Instagram, DeVine said that people claim to support him but refuse to pay attention to the homophobia he has faced.

“How can you say you support me and my equality? How can you not see how Stanford Swim has treated me and used me over the last four years?” he wrote.

“Am I invisible? Plain and simple: there are surface level reasons I was kicked off the Stanford swim team, but I can tell you with certainty that it comes down to the fact that I am gay.”

DeVine said that his removal from the team is a part of systemic homophobia which has been engineered to silence him.

Plain and simple: there are surface level reasons I was kicked off the Stanford swim team, but I can tell you with certainty that it comes down to the fact that I am gay.

“I am a talented, successful, educated, proud, gay man: I am a threat to the culture that holds sports teams together. I want something to change, because I can’t take it anymore,” he said.

“My story is not unique. There are queer voices everywhere and all you have to do is listen. I am asking, begging for some sort of action. If you are reading this, this post is for you!”

The swimmer questioned why it is his job to educate coaches about homophobia.

Elsewhere in his post, DeVine said he had tried to explain to coaches and other athletes that they were contributing to a homophobic culture.

“I’ve started to ask myself: Why is it my job to educate coaches and athletes at the most resourceful university in the world?” he wrote.

“I cannot continue to try to engage people in this conversation when there is so much fragility to obscure my humanity and character, so much rhetoric to keep me silent.”

Last year, when he came out, DeVine said he had been worried about what his teammates would think if they found out he was gay.

He praised his teammates at the time for supporting him when he came out.

More: Abrahm DeVine, Discrimination, Gay swimmer, Homophobia, LGBT

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