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The OU Pole Vaulter is out, happy and proud…


Well, I guess we can expect the Oklahoma legislature to ban the pole vault sometime soon.

Last week, Out Sports featured an essay by Tanner Williams, a pole vaulter for the OU men's track team. In the piece, Tanner discussed the challenges of growing up as a gay man in southern Oklahoma, coming out as a college athlete, and the joys of marrying his partner Scott at a ceremony in New Mexico in 2014.

The essay is too long to post here, but it's a really good read. Although it lacks any double entendres, it puts a human face on a contentious issue and can possibly open the eyes of the Derplahomans who are on the wrong side of the gay marriage debate. I'd really recommend reading it.

For some reason, though, Tanner's story was totally ignored by the Oklahoma media. Kind of strange, huh? All it takes is one quick visit to NewsOK or KFOR to figure out they'll post, share or hat-tip to just about anything in return for a cheap page view or Facebook like, and you'd think a story about the first(?) University of Oklahoma male athlete to open up about being a homosexual would accomplish that.

But no, I can't find it anywhere. It's not on KFOR, NewsOK, News9, etc. It's like they're ignoring it. For example, linked to these types of stories instead:


That's just strange, but it's not too surprising. Although the paper isn't as behind the times on gay marriage as they are on other issues, this is still The Oklahoman. Outside of selling ads and not hemorrhaging money so quickly, their number one mission is to advance a conservative agenda. Did they intentionally not post Tanner's story because of that? It's hard to tell, because as we also know, they paper is also mired in incompetence. Maybe the guy in charge of clickbait was helping Brianna Bailey walk down Western or something and missed it. Perhaps the person in charge of their Google alerts (that's how I discovered the story) was busy writing "brand insights." Who knows.

Regardless, why Tanner's story wasn't covered doesn't matter. The story here is Tanner's story. I'd suggest you share it on social media to help get the word out. The local media won't do it.

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