Seems like gay men can’t catch a break. Even when we’re minding out own business, homophobes and sensitive masculine men have to mock us online.
What started all the petty talk and eventual worthwhile conversation about gender norms and masculinity? A video of two best friends, who happen to be professional baseball players, showing affection.
During a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Atlanta Braves players Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuña Jr. were caught on camera sharing an affectionate embrace inside the team’s dugout.”
Ummm, this is a first. Acuna Jr have a headache or something? pic.twitter.com/7JdStsn2gf
— Bonta Hill (@BontaHill) July 29, 2018
Unfortunately, that light scene was then ruined by many on the internet who can’t handle the thought of two men touching each other in a none-sexual way.
Dude wtf is going on there? ?
— M Bell (@oscarth3gr0uch1) July 29, 2018
— 49ERNATIVE (@DankerD) July 30, 2018
This dude needs to man the F up! Get a room
— Tetley (@Tetley55) August 2, 2018
Acuña Jr. and Albies make us feel just a little uncomfortable…
— Dave the Commish (@fci2000) July 29, 2018
That said, there were several who went to the two men’s defense and pointed out how toxic masculinity is getting in the way of men enjoying intimate and fulfilling relationships or “true brotherhood” as one Twitter account called it.
Bro the world is making people weird. That’s true brotherhood right there… #alllove
— Just Ced. (@_ItsCedHomie) August 1, 2018
Shoutout to Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuña Jr. for expressing tenderness pic.twitter.com/JLLtTY6YkV
— Pedro Moura (@pedromoura) July 29, 2018
Some people really wish they had friends like Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuña Jr. Their friendship is how every friendship should be.
— Ronald Acuña Jr(G.O.A.T) (@IcyWinterSoul) August 1, 2018
This is what "man up" should mean. Don't be afraid to be kind.
— Keli Vice (@kelivice) July 31, 2018
As for why the two men were embracing, neither of them has explained yet. Some believe it was a joke after teammate Sean Newcomb’s no hitter.
Others shared the rumor that the sudden death of Acuña’s mother was the cause. That rumor was later revealed to be inaccurate as a Braves spokesperson told Yahoo Lifestyle. They shared that the outfileder’s mother is alive and well.
In the end, we don’t need to know why the two men were being affectionate (as either a joke or seriously). All we need to do is celebrate that they did it, celebrate that it was shared with us all, and hope that a day will come when all men (gay, straight, or otherwise) can exhibit similar moments of comfort and connection with our male friends without toxic outcry.