Retired NBA player Tim Hardaway on
Wednesday officially endorsed a campaign to legalize gay marriage in
The 46-year-old Hardaway retired from
professional basketball in 2003. He was one of the league's best
point guards during his 14-year career.
Wednesday night, Hardaway was the first to sign a petition
seeking to repeal Florida's 2008 voter-approved constitutional
amendment limiting marriage to heterosexual unions. If placed on the
ballot in 2014 and approved by voters, marriage in Florida would be
defined as the “union of two persons.”
In 2007, Hardaway described himself as
“You know, I hate gay people, so I
let it be known,” he said in a radio interview with Dan LeBatard.
“I don't like gay people and I don't like to be around gay people.
I am homophobic. I don't like it. It shouldn't be in the world or
in the United States.”
He's since apologized for his comments
and in 2011 campaigned against an unsuccessful recall effort against
three El Paso, Texas politicians who voted in favor of extending
health benefits to the domestic partners of gay city employees.
“I opened my eyes and went to
said of his change of heart.
The nascent group Equal
Marriage Florida must collect more than 680,000 valid signatures
to get on next year's ballot.
Meanwhile, Equality Florida, the
state's largest LGBT rights advocate, is looking for plaintiffs for a
potential lawsuit challenging the state's ban.
gay marriage supporters look for plaintiffs for potential lawsuit.)
Others states considering similar votes