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The Early Lead
Posted at 03:09 PM ET, 05/09/2011

Rangers’ Sean Avery joins campaign for gay rights

Sean Avery isn’t necessarily the first person who comes to mind when you think of the Golden Rule, let alone love and marriage.

But Avery, who indiscriminately dishes out punishment for the New York Rangers, is the first athlete to publicly state he favors equal-marriage rights in New York, saying, in a video: “I’m Sean Avery, and I’m a New Yorker for marriage equality. I treat everyone the way I expect to be treated, and that applies to marriage.”

“The places I’ve played and lived the longest have been in West Hollywood, Calif., when I played for the LA Kings, and when I moved to New York, I lived in Chelsea for the first four years,” Avery told the New York Times. “I certainly have been surrounded by the gay community. And living in New York and when you live in LA, you certainly have a lot of gay friends.”

His video is part of the New Yorkers for Marriage Equality campaign and ends with Avery saying, “Committed couples should be able to marry the person they love. Join me in supporting marriage equality.”

Earlier this year, linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo recorded a video for Equality Maryland. After Kobe Bryant was fined $100,000 for making an antigay slur, Grant Hill and Jared Dudley of the Phoenix Suns recorded a public-service announcement for the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network. It is expected to be broadcast during the conference finals.

By  |  03:09 PM ET, 05/09/2011

 
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