The openly gay athlete appeared on a homophobic meme.

Simon Dunn has hit out after a homophobic meme used his face to further its message. The meme was divided into two sections, one about gay men the creator respected, with Dunn’s picture, and one about the gay men the creator doesn’t, with a picture of comedian Julian Clary looking camp.

The section next to Dunn’s picture says the gay men to be respected are those who:

  • Act like a “normal human being”
  • Has a personality
  • Doesn’t force the fact they’re gay onto someone
  • And is “literally a normal person” someone can be friend with

Meanwhile, the gay men to be shunned are those who:

  • Have their sexuality as their focal point of existence
  • Have the rainbow flag everywhere, including on social media profile pictures
  • Constantly complains about straight people
  • And dresses like a “clown” to appear more visible

One of the people who initially saw the meme, which was shared by a gay man, called it an “absolute fucking catastrophe” adding that “Internalised homophobia is a disease.”

As the meme went viral, Simon Dunn saw it and responded. Writing on Twitter, the former bobsledder and rugby player said: “Don’t use my image for your internalized homophobia.

“Don’t make assumptions on the kind of gay man I am or the kind of gay men I associate with. I’ll always support those those who are true to themselves and be who they truly are. I will always be your biggest advocate!”

Speaking to GSN over the use of his image, he said: “[I’m] appalled at both the message behind it and the fact my face had been used. The message behind this image couldn’t be further from the truth.”

Dunn confirmed that he hadn’t given permission for his image to be used, saying: “Clearly whoever created it doesn’t have any idea of the person I am and what I stand for.

“I’ve spent the last several years being very public about my sexuality whilst I was an athlete and still continue to do so today.”

He added: “The gay community is notorious for not being our own allies. We need to learn to be more accepting of others within our community and stop idealizing a certain type whilst acting like anything else is lesser.

“If you think its ok to ‘not respect’ others, perhaps your respect isn’t something that people want anyway.”

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