It’s Time to Shuck the Corn in Cobb


Only heterosexual volleyball players are welcome in Cobb County, Ga.

They don’t want you in Cobb County, Ga., if you’re gay and play.

They only want straight setters and straight servers in Cobb County, Ga., the home of heterosexual volleyball here in the United States.


Now, this being America, as a citizen and taxpayer of Cobb County, Ga., you do have every right to state your candid opinion on the serious danger that homosexual volleyball represents to this great nation of ours.

I know for a fact that in Cobb County, Ga., there are people who lie awake at night, the poor dears, worrying their little hearts out about homosexual volleyball.

But it so happens that Cobb County, Ga., is the chosen site for volleyball’s competition at the 1996 Summer Olympics.

And the people of Cobb County, Ga., well, a majority of these folks, passed a resolution about a year ago, voting that, by gum, they just didn’t believe in this nonsense about gay people having rights.

No, they said in Cobb County, Ga., if gay people feel they absolutely must have equal rights, then let them have equal rights, but let them have equal rights someplace else.

A gentleman (cough) named Gordon Wysong from the Cobb County board of commissioners is the fellow who wrote this resolution, and old Gordon is proud to have put his old John Hancock on it.


And old Commissioner Gordon was even prouder just last week, when the Cobb County commishes put their heads together to vote on whether they would be willing to strike a compromise on their anti-gay resolution, because they voted: No, no, a thousand times no.

Speaking on behalf of all the straight shooters in Cobb County and gay-volleyball bashers everywhere, old Gordon reaffirmed this week that there would be no more pussyfooting around on this issue, because, well, to quote old Gordon: “That settled the matter!”

Well, I feared that perhaps this would put an end to this heated controversy in Cobb County, Ga., until, lo and behold, Greg Louganis spoke up and told them to take their county and shove it.

Louganis, the four-time Olympic diving gold medalist, “outed” himself as a homosexual at the Olympic Festival in St. Louis the other day, after having participated in the recent Gay Games in New York.

And in so doing--right on the mark, Greg--he had a few choice words for the commissioners of Cobb County, Ga., asking that the Olympic volleyball event be moved from there, maybe to some neighboring county where human beings could be treated like human beings.

For it had become obvious to Louganis that where Cobb County, Ga., is concerned, “Some athletes are not welcome here.”

Saying that he was terrified at finally acknowledging publicly what those close to him have known all along, Louganis told his audience, “I am proud to stand before you as an openly gay athlete.”

Louganis is a bright, sociable, popular and accomplished fellow of 34 who would like to believe that he could function freely in Cobb County or any other county without being denied the deed to a home, medical treatment, access to churches and schools or a lousy plate of eggs at the local diner.

Funny, but for some crazy reason Louganis doesn’t happen to think that the Atlanta Olympic Organizing Committee, the U.S. Olympic movement or the International Olympic Committee should be rewarding the county of Cobb, state of Georgia, with one of the venues for the 1996 Summer Games when the voters in this county don’t want “his kind” anywhere in the vicinity.

And other athletes are offering Louganis their support, such as Olympic champion speedskater Cathy Turner, who said of Cobb County’s twice-confirmed attitude toward gays, “It’s like racism.”

Yes, I guess everyone who plays volleyball in Cobb County, Ga., will be asked to submit to questions from local officials, such as, “Do you play men’s volleyball or do you play real men’s volleyball?”

I guess every Olympian who sets foot in Cobb County, Ga., will be asked, “Are you a modern Olympian or are you one of those funny 19th Century compete-in-the-nude Olympians?”

I guess every volleyball match in Cobb County, Ga., will be supervised by a big old sheriff who makes sure that nobody does any of that patting-on-the-butt stuff after a great spike.

Even now, I can see Atlanta mounting those billboards:

“Welcome to the Host City of the 1996 Summer Olympics. Proud to Host Most of You.”

Maybe if they really want to show their contempt, Gordon and the Cobb County commissioners can do their tomahawk chops with limp wrists.

I couldn’t be prouder of Louganis for doing what he is doing, and I couldn’t agree more with Louganis on what he is saying.

I’d add maybe one thing, Greg.

The next Gay Games? Hold them in Cobb County.

With permission or not.