(Ed. note: We think Caitlyn Jenner is being very brave, and respect her courage. This is not about her, this is about people at ESPN not caring for the transgender community and only interested in ratings. The actions at ESPN are not fair to sports courage or transgender people. The executives over there have said and covered nothing leading up to Caitlyn Jenner's Vanity Fair article. They saw the mostly positive response from the public, and ESPN typically decided to see ratings only. They never looked for athletic courage, and it is all around them. The award may seem silly, but if ESPN really cares about supporting everyone associated with sports,maybe they could start making transgender athletes struggles part of the regular sports conversation. When will ESPN talk about a current athlete dealing with a bigoted community? We are not holding our breathe.)
Why are the ESPY's giving the Arthur Ashe Courage Award to Caitlyn Jenner this year? Why does she deserve a courage award? What she is doing, coming out as transgender is brave, but what about all the other transgender people out there that don't get awards? How do they feel about this? Are they happy or would they rather she go on and live her life as a female now? Why does she deserve an award for this? I'll say it once again, what she's doing is very brave, but more brave than Lauren Hill?
Do you guys know who she is?
Lauren Hill was a young girl with inoperable brain cancer that just wanted to play in a game of college basketball. Not only did she play in a game, but she scored buckets and inspired the players on her team. That's bravery. Going out there, incredibly ill and playing basketball. She didn't do it for a heart warming story, or to show people that she could do it, she did it for herself and her family and her teammates. She has unfortunately passed away, but dammit what she did took incredible courage and bravery. Lauren Hill was so incredibly sick and when you saw her on the court, there was nothing but smiles coming from her face. That's bravery. That's courage.
How about the double amputee war vet, who has turned his life around with running and exercise? You lose two body parts, pick yourself up and give yourself as much a normal life as possible. I can't imagine what I'd do if I lost a fingernail, let alone body parts. Once again, that takes courage and bravery.
I guess the thing that upsets me most about Caitlyn Jenner getting the award is, it's a clear ratings grab from the awful, awful executives at ESPN. They see the opportunity that a former Olympic champion, who's now coming out as transgender will bring them. They see tons of new viewers, but I do not think they care for those viewers. It also saddens me that the people who will watch her accept the award don't know who she was when she was Bruce Jenner. They only know her from the horrible monster family known as the Kardashians. That's so sad, especially for a sports based show. Fans of the Kardashian show don't care about sports, but the higher ups at ESPN obviously don't care about that. They just want viewers. I also feel like this is taking advantage of Caitlyn Jenner. She's been in the limelight for awhile now due to her horrible ex wife and her terrible children and I think she wants to keep the story on her as much as possible so she can stay famous. It may not be a popular opinion, but it's mine and it's pretty sad what they're doing at ESPN. With that being said, let me reiterate, what Caitlyn Jenner is doing is brave, just not on the level of a double amputee or Lauren Hill. Not even close. ESPN could've done the right thing and given this honor to the double amputee or, in my opinion the truly brave and courageous one, Lauren Hill. But, they don't care about honoring those two, they only care about the ratings.
Once again for shame ESPN
Ty is the Pop Culture Editor for Seed Sing. Give him a follow on twitter @tykulik