Sue Bird set the world of women’s sports ablaze Friday when she casually posted a photo of Megan Rapinoe proposing to her poolside. You know, casual stuff, no caption necessary.
Bird, a four-time WNBA champion and 11-time All-Star with the Seattle Storm, and Rapinoe, a two-time World Cup winner with the U.S. Women’s National Team and winner of the 2019 Ballon d’Or Féminin, have been dating since fall 2016, so many fans were happy to see that one of them finally popped the question.
Both Bird and Rapinoe are outspoken when it comes to advocating for fair pay for female athletes as well as LGBTQIA rights.
Earlier this month, Rapinoe wrote a column for The Players’ Tribune in which she addressed why it seems the USWNT gets more support from the American public than does the WNBA.
“This country has a deep history of racism, and a deep history of homophobia,” she wrote. “And if you look at the players in the ‘W’ (WNBA) most of them are Black, and a lot of them are gay.” Rapinoe compared the support and media attention she and the USWNT attracted for its 2019 World Cup victory with that for the WNBA.
“Where’s that same energy for the best women’s basketball players on the planet?? Where’s that energy for the women’s sports that — instead of scanning cute and white and straight — scan tall and black and queer??”
Bird echoed Rapinoe’s remarks in an interview with Don Riddell of CNN’s “World Sport.”
“It’s 70 to 80 percent Black women, a lot of gay women. We’re tall; we’re big. And I think there’s just maybe this intimidation factor with that,” Bird said. “People are quick to talk about it, judge it, put it down. And soccer, you just don’t see that just based on how they look.”