Chris Kluwe, Gay Rights Advocate Vikings Cut, "Wouldn't Have Changed Anything": Update

See the update at the end of this post about an extensive interview Chris Kluwe gave a colleague at a Voice Media Group news site in which the punter cut by the Vikings says, "I wouldn't have changed anything."

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ORIGINAL POST, MAY 6, 2:23 P.M.: Chris Kluwe, who these days may be better known as a straight advocate for gay rights than as an NFL punter, was cut this morning by the Minnesota Vikings.

"So long, Minnesota, and thanks for all the fish!" was the first of three rapid-fire tweets posted by the pride of Los Alamitos High School and Costa Mesa hobby shop owner.

Kluwe followed that tweet this morning with: "Thank you to all the fans, my teammates, and the Wilf family for the past 8.5 years. I wouldn't have traded it for anything." Then: "And thank you everyone for your support. Remember, one label does not define who you are as a person :)"

The punter received a nationwide following after Deadspin, to which Kluwe had sometimes contributed columns, carried an open letter he wrote to a Maryland legislator who'd asked the Baltimore Ravens owner to discipline a player who had openly supported marriage equality. His line informing Emmett C. Burns Jr. that the passage of gay marriage would not turn the state delegate into a "lustful cockmonster" may have received the most play.

The Weekly's Nov. 1 cover story on Kluwe, which Andy Mannix wrote for his home Voice Media Group paper City Pages of Minneapolis, won GLAAD's 2012 award for Outstanding Newspaper Article in March. The Gay and Lesbian Community Services Center of Orange County (The Center OC) made Kluwe its 2013 Torchbearer Award recipient at an April 20 gala in Santa Ana.

But Chip Scoggins of the Minneapolis Star Tribune speculated in print Sunday that Kluwe was to be cut from the Vikings for being outspoken. Kluwe replied that ""the sacrifice" of being cut "would be worth it," reportedly saying:

"Now, I would hope that I would get the chance to play football again, because I think I can still play. But if it ends up being something that costs me that position, I think making people aware of an issue that is causing children to commit suicide is more important than kicking a leather ball."

As you'd expect, Vikings general manager Rick Spielman claimed cutting Kluwe had nothing to with his off-field advocacy: "When we're making decisions, we're purely making them trying to bring in the best competition possible regardless of position," he told the Star Trib today. "This was just another normal personnel move. It had nothing to do with Chris Kluwe's off-field concerns, I have no issues if Chris Kluwe wants to express his opinion, that's his right, that's his freedom of speech. This is just a football decision to bring in a guy to come in to compete."

UPDATE, MAY 8, 11:51 A.M.: When Andy Mannix of the Minneapolis City Pages asked Chris Kluwe about his gay rights advocacy possibly playing a role in being cut by the Minnesota Vikings Monday, the punter replied, "I wouldn't have changed anything."

Kluwe also said he expected to be let go. Read the full interview here:

http://blogs.citypages.com/blotter/2013/05/chris_kluwe_i_wouldnt_have_changed_anything.php.

Email: mcoker@ocweekly.com. Twitter: @MatthewTCoker. Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!


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16 comments
Dennis Sam S
Dennis Sam S

just put GAY RIGHTS somewhere in the title of the article to grab your attention, but obviously you've never watched football.

Justin Marshall
Justin Marshall

OC weekly.....your funny! some of your articles are REDICULOUS! haha

Fred G. Sanford
Fred G. Sanford

Look at the bright side...Kluwe has a ucla education. He can apply at Domino's for a job in pizza delivery.

Steve York
Steve York

Maybe he'll have some time to work on the shitty service you get at his gaming store.

Justin Henretta
Justin Henretta

this is one of those dont ask, dont tell situations. unless they start having a 3rd locker room (one for women, one for men and one for gays), then there is no place for these guys in sports. sorry, but I dont want to have my junk stared at, or even get that awkward feeling that someone MIGHT be staring at it. be gay all you want, but keep it quiet if you CHOSE sports or the military, where you will be without clothing in front of other men.

Susan Enstad Morris
Susan Enstad Morris

Oh GOD here we go again. Blaming something that happens to an outspoken person on bigotry. Get over it, stop crying wolf. He was cut because he wasn't good enough, plain and simple. BUT OOOOOOOH NOOOOO, he was cut because he is a gay rights activist. Please, stop. It's old, it's stale, it's baseless, and profoundly ignorant. Get a life people.

Elizabeth Ferrari
Elizabeth Ferrari

A punter who quotes Douglas Adams. That's something you don't see every day. Wish him all success in anything wants to do.

Rafael Salazar
Rafael Salazar

He should have done it at the end of his career, like the basket ball dude

Adelina Marian Hernandez
Adelina Marian Hernandez

He did worry that this would happen. Not just to him but to other allies. Does his track record with the Vikings suggest he was less than stellar? Or is it just that by trying to create a safe space in professional sports he rocked their boats one too many times? *smh*

Mitchell_Young
Mitchell_Young topcommenter

The Vikings drafted a punter out of UCLA; Kluwe's been traded in for a younger model.

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@Dennis Sam S You're right about that, you know: Coker's a Raiders fan, and they haven't played football in about a decade...

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