Free to Believe

Daniel Murphy

New York Mets: New York, New York

In March 2015, New York Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy found out that his deeply held religious convictions were unwelcome. When Major League Baseball appointed the former player Billy Bean who identifies as homosexual as its “ambassador of inclusion,” Murphy was asked his opinion.  In an interview with NJ.com, Murphy made the following statement: "I disagree with his lifestyle," Murphy said. "I do disagree with the fact that Billy is a homosexual. That doesn't mean I can't still invest in him and get to know him. I don't think the fact that someone is a homosexual should completely shut the door on investing in them in a relational aspect. Getting to know him. That, I would say, you can still accept them but I do disagree with the lifestyle, 100 percent."

Murphy continued. "Maybe, as a Christian, that we haven't been as articulate enough in describing what our actual stance is on homosexuality," he said. "We love the people. We disagree the lifestyle. That's the way I would describe it for me. It's the same way that there are aspects of my life that I'm trying to surrender to Christ in my own life. There's a great deal of many things, like my pride. I just think that as a believer trying to articulate it in a way that says just because I disagree with the lifestyle doesn't mean I'm just never going to speak to Billy Bean every time he walks through the door. That's not love. That's not love at all."

However, Murphy’s candor didn’t sit well with team officials, who issued a gag order on their player’s free speech.  “Murphy to talk baseball only,” ESPN’s March 4, 2015 headline read.  “New York Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy will no longer address his religious beliefs and will stick to baseball,” a team spokesman said.  

Photo credit: Courtesy of "IWS Radio" at blogspot.com