Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor
About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Archives OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor


  WINDY CITY TIMES

Local LGBTQ players deliver message with social-justice T-shirts
by Ross Forman, Windy City Times
2020-09-01

This article shared 2112 times since Tue Sep 1, 2020
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


David Rill and a few friends joined a new team this summer in the abbreviated Open Sunday Softball League, run by the Chicago Metropolitan Sports Association ( CMSA ), and they needed jerseys for the Howard Brown Weakened Warriors, coached by Michael Richardson.

"I saw some Major League Baseball players gearing up for the start of the [MLB] season wearing Black Lives Matters shirts, both in the wake of the protests and in support of their teammates," Rill said. "I thought [that] would be a great way to support those on our team and in the league and stand in solidarity with many others."

Rill and his mates "thought it would be great to support Tee Mart each week with a different message," he said. "Toward the end of the season [in late August], we wanted to make sure the message was more than just performative and put it into action, thus the idea of the supply drive was born."

Message-driven shirts were sold at the Sunday softball games. There were different shirts each week with a message for teammates and some other people in the league who wanted to participate or wear one. The shirts were intended to support a Black-owned business, Tee Mart Apparel in Rogers Park, and highlight them as an option for people who might need apparel or jerseys this season or in the future while also starting a conversation or making a statement in support and advocacy for different groups who need support in and out of CMSA.

"Throughout the season, more and more people asked how they could get a shirt so with the help of Myles Lawter, we thought we could turn it into a supply drive: Donate $10 to help offset the cost of the shirt with the promise of bringing an item to the fields to support Brave Space Alliance, [an] LGBTQIA+-run food pantry in the Midwest, located on Chicago's South Side.

"We've spent a little more than $1,000 at Tee Mart Apparel [printing shirts], and we raised close to $500 for Brave Space in addition to all of the supplies that folks [donated]."

CMSA representatives, including Rill, delivered the supplies and cash donation to Brave Space in late August.

"We never set a [financial] goal; this was more about sustainable support of Black-owned businesses that has to carry beyond 2020," Rill said. "Raising awareness for them as well for Brave Space were the primary goals.

"I've actually been humbled by the amount of support folks outside of Chicago have had for the cause," after learning about the drive on social media.

"The people [who Brave Space Alliance] serve directly aligns with the LGBTQIA+ community that makes up the majority of CMSA, so it was an easy choice. I think CMSA has an opportunity to seek out and uplift Black-led groups while making our membership aware of local non-profits that are truly making a big difference in a lot of people's lives."

Rill said the campaign has been a league-wide drive—and beyond, thanks to social media. Case in point, heading into the last week of the regular-season, a friend of Rill's offered to cover the costs of shirts for the entire Howard Brown Warriors team—and the person doesn't even live in Chicago.

"I have been surprised in the best of ways by folks who just want to help out, but don't know where to start, so it's given them a chance to talk to myself, Myles, or one of our friends about groups to find and other resources available to them if they want to continue to educate themselves or use their position to give back."

The weekly shirts ( ranging in price from $12 to $18 ) had simple messages with simple lettering, such as "Black Lives Matter," "Black Trans Lives Matter," "Justice for Breonna Taylor," "Protect Trans Youth" and "Support Chicago's Black Voices."

Six of the nine rec division had at least some players wearing the shirts.

Rill told Windy City Times, "I really only expected myself [and two new teammates to the team] to wear them. ... It was great to see so many people reach out and ask about them. By the end of the season, we had folks from all over the league, folks who do not play in CMSA, and even folks who don't live in Chicago wearing the 'Support Chicago's Black Voices' shirt.

"It was rad to have genuine conversations with people about things they could do. There are different avenues of advocacy and action that everyone can take … I think we did a great job of showing that and talking to folks about that when it would be [asked at the fields]."

Their social-media message even reached Major League Baseball.

Cincinnati Reds relief pitcher Amir Garrett replied, "Wow, this is awesome" about their first Black Lives Matter online post.

"I grew up in Columbus, Ohio so I'm a huge Reds fan," Rill said. "It was really cool to have him react positively on a post for some random people in Chicago."

Rill, 35, who lives in Rogers Park, is the Eastern region director of field training at Noodles & Company. He has played CMSA sports for eight years, including softball, volleyball ( indoor and beach ), kickball and dodgeball. He also has played CMSA flag football.

"I think my favorite moment in CMSA was in football a few years back," Rill said. "My good friend Karl was our quarterback and with time was running out at the end of a game, he told me to take a snap as QB and just launch a Hail Mary [pass]. I had never played QB before, but the ball fell perfectly into his arms and he scored a touchdown. That ended up happening once more, leaving me with a pretty sparkling stat line for someone who typically plays on the offensive line."

One of his CMSA softball highlights was turning a triple play last season.

A softball injury also stands out, specifically, how it happened.

"One of [my former] teams were fighting back through a tournament bracket and the game went into extra innings. I was coaching first base when one of our outfielders had a walk-off hit to win the game. I jumped up in excitement and tore my calf muscle and couldn't play in the championship [game]. It's a pretty funny story to tell when you lead with, 'One time I got injured coaching first base …'"


This article shared 2112 times since Tue Sep 1, 2020
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Blackhawks hire woman as player development coach 2020-11-24
- The Chicago Blackhawks hired U.S. women's national team captain Kendall Coyne Schofield as a player development coach and promoted Meghan Hunter, previously general manager Stan Bowman's executive assistant, to director ...


Gay News

Chicago Red Stars announce annual #SHEINSPIRESME award winners 2020-11-23
--From a press release - CHICAGO (November 23, 2020) — The Chicago Red Stars announced the three winners of the 2020 #SHEINSPIRESME award. The Chicago Red Stars #SHEINSPIRESME Award is an annual award that is presented to women who exemplify leadership, ...


Gay News

Women's soccer league announces 2021 competition framework 2020-11-18
- The National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) announced a new competition framework to debut in 2021 that aims to expand opportunities for the athletes of the league to showcase the NWSL. Players will report to camp Feb. ...


Gay News

Three Red Stars selected for upcoming U.S. WNT Camp 2020-11-17
- The United States Women's National Team announced its roster for the upcoming camp overseas against the Netherlands. The two countries will face off Friday, Nov. 27 at 12:30 p.m. ET / 6:30 p.m. local and will ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ RuPaul, LGBTQ athletes, film winners, Charles Busch 2020-11-02
- RuPaul has a lot of irons in the fire, according to out.com. Not only is she on the cover of Cosmopolitan UK's January 2021 issue, but the drag icon has also posted her new five-track Hey Sis, It's Christmas EP. Also, ...


Gay News

Chicago offers new contracts or exercises options for all 23 Chicago Red Stars players 2020-10-30
--From a press release - CHICAGO — After the completion of the 2020 National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) end of year process, the Chicago Red Stars have announced contract statuses for all of its players. All of Chicago's 23 rostered players ...


Gay News

Seth G.: Finding out what unites, divides while biking across America 2020-10-29
- Seth G. (actual name: Seth Gottesdiener) is on a journey—and a mission. The fitness professional/social-justice activist—seen as a leader in Los Angeles' LGBTQ community—is biking from L.A. to Washington, D.C. ...


Gay News

Women's pro soccer draft Nov. 12 2020-10-15
- The National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) announced that the 2020 NWSL Expansion Draft, featuring Racing Louisville Football Club, will take place Thursday, Nov. 12. The trade/waiver window beginning the expansion draft process will close Oct. ...


Gay News

World Rugby bans trans women players 2020-10-11
- International body World Rugby ruled Oct. 9 that transgender women may not participate in elite and international women's rugby, Reuters reported. In new guidelines, World Rugby said the naturally acquired physical benefits that trans women receive ...


Gay News

Red Stars add new player, lose finale and are part of national camp 2020-10-11
- The Chicago Red Stars announced the signing of Ella Stevens. The club selected Stevens with the 24th pick in the 2020 NWSL Draft. She made her first appearance for the Red Stars on a short-term contract ...


Gay News

Chicago Sky's Courtney Vandersloot named to All-WNBA First Team 2020-10-11
- Chicago Sky guard Courtney Vandersloot was named to the 2020 All-WNBA First Team. It marks the second straight All-WNBA First Team selection for Vandersloot, who also made the First Team in 2019. This season Vandersloot became ...


Gay News

Nominations open for Chicago Red Stars' #SHEINSPIRESME Award 2020-10-01
- The Chicago Red Stars announced that nominations are now open for the 2020 #SHEINSPIRESME Award. The Chicago Red Stars #SHEINSPIRESME Award is an annual award that is presented to women who exemplify leadership, practice social responsibility, ...


Gay News

30 Under 30 Awards 2000-2019 2020-09-30
- Honoring local LGBTQ people 30 and younger who excelled in entertainment, politics, health, activism, academics, sports and other areas, Windy City Times' 30 Under 30 Awards ceremonies, which started in 2000, were held during Pride Month. ...


Gay News

Lendale Johnson, excelling on and off the tennis court 2020-09-29
- Some would say that Lendale Johnson has accomplished enough in being one of only two male openly gay professional tennis players. (Johnson's part of the International Tennis Federation. It is separate from the Association of Tennis ...


Gay News

Red Stars tie Washington 1-1 2020-09-27
- Savannah McCaskill scored in the 72nd minute as the Chicago Red Stars played to a 1-1 tie against the Washington Spirit on Sept. 26. For the second straight game, Sarah Luebbert earned an assist with her ...


 



Copyright © 2020 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Archives OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.