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Two-time Olympic Athletics Champion Kerron Clement Steps out of the Closet

(Blogmensgo, gay blog of October 16, 2019) American athlete Kerron Clement used the International Coming-Out Day on October 11, 2019 to come out as gay. This means, he waited until his 33rd birthday to reveal his homosexuality in an interview with Out magazine. This is the first time a top male athlete has admitted to be gay during his active sports career. More female athletes have come out in the past, such as Dutee Chand, Caster Semenya and Nadine Müller.

This is the 400-meter hurdle race of Kerron Clement 2017 in London.

In addition to the 4 x 400 meter titles, he became world champion in the 400 meter outdoor hurdles in Osaka (2007), Berlin (2009) and Indoor (2010), silver medalist in the 400 meter hurdles at the Olympic Games in Beijing (2008), Olympic champion at the Olympic Games in Rio (2016) and bronze medalist at the London World Championships (2017).

It took Kerron Clement seventeen years to admit his homosexuality to himself and others, and it was only after severe internal conflicts that he managed to do so. It was very difficult for him to share his sexual orientation with his family, who eventually supported him.

Coming-out is like an obstacle course, but over more than 400 meters! © Interactive Sports /Unsplash

It was only at the age of 33, almost at the end of his sporting career, that he finally came out of the closet, in order “to simply be himself and be free”. When his sponsor Nike inaugurated the rainbow and inclusion track BeTrue at Los Angeles City College on October 11, he found the strength to join the very small circle of openly gay world-class athletes.

As we know it, Kerron Clement is the only male sport champion in the world who has come out during his career. Apart from athletics, there were other athletes before him, such as Matthew Mitcham and Tom Daley, Michael Sam (American football) and Jason Collins (basketball).

How is Kerron Clement as a person? In June 2019, during an interview (bilingual French-English) before the competition in Hérouville, he had a fever and preferred not to run that day.

Kerron Clement did not take part in the World Athletics Championships in Doha, which have just ended recently. And even if he had qualified, he probably wouldn’t have come out there. Only one openly gay top athlete in 2019 – this clearly shows that world-class sports and homosexuality (especially among men) still do not go together well.

Frank-S / MensGo

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