UFC 157 will be a night for the mixed martial arts (MMA) history books as women will be swinging leather inside the Octagon for the first time in Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) history.
Sure, Ronda Rousey is all people seem to be focusing on (just ask Gus Pugliese) but, aside from the event serving host to the promotion's first-ever women's title fight, there will be another first occurring in Anaheim, California, as Liz Carmouche, "Rowdy's" opponent in her inaugural bantamweight title defense, will become the first openly-gay fighter to compete inside the famous cage.
UFC president Dana White, who has been labeled a ‘homophobe' in the past due to his infamous rant in which a homosexual slur slipped through his tongue, says he isn't against the gay community, in fact, he encourages fighters to 'come out.'
That's just what he got in Carmouche and White, for one, couldn't be happier as he revealed at a recent media luncheon (via MMA Fighting):
"There's a lot of gay athletes out there and actors and actresses. It takes a brave person to come out and admit it because they're always afraid of what it's going to do to their career or how people are going to treat them afterwards. I love what she did. I know I have the big ‘homophobe' persona and people think I'm some homophobe. I'm the furthest thing from it. I think it's ridiculous it's 2013 and the government tells two people they can't marry each other. Who is the government to tell two people who say they love each other they can't be married? It's ridiculous. I applaud that she came out and that she's the first one. Good for her. I hope more do. It doesn't bother me one bit. Shouldn't bother anyone else either."
As the event draws nearer, you can bet your bottom dollar more and more attention will be focused on "Girl-rilla," who sometimes seems to be the forgotten fighter competing at the event, getting lost in the huge shadow of Rousey.
It would behoove media members and fans alike to focus on the challenger's skills and accomplishments which earned her the right to compete opposite Ronda on such an important night, rather than her sexual preference.
Nevertheless, I'm sure White and Carmouche herself, are more than ready to take on all non-fight related questions, should they arise.