Rockford Ravens Rugby Club column receives feedback

By Doug Halberstadt
Sports Columnist

I thoroughly enjoy the responses, both positive and negative, I get from writing these weekly columns. It’s humbling to me when people take the time to write a comment about something I’ve said that has resonated with them. I also enjoy it when someone comes up to me in public and shares a thought or opinion about one of my columns or stories.

Last week, I wrote a column concerning a press release I received from the Rockford Ravens Rugby Club. I took exception to a line in the press release stating the team was composed of both straight and gay members. I took the stance that it wasn’t necessary to include that information in the press release.

That column generated a couple of e-mails from members of the Rockford Ravens. They thanked me for sharing their information, but they weren’t happy that I voiced my opinion that the sexual orientation of their members was superfluous and totally irrelevant. I still stand by that. I don’t think most people really care if a Rockford Raven rugby player is straight or gay. It simply shouldn’t matter — and it doesn’t!

One thing that was correctly pointed out to me was that I originally used the term sexual preference in that column instead of sexual orientation. That e-mail stated that term was not only incorrect, but also offensive. For that I stand corrected and apologize. I appreciate having been enlightened and informed on the proper terminology.

The bottom line is, the Rockford Ravens are an asset to this community. They not only provide free entertainment via their games, their members are also contributors to the enhancement of our city on many different levels. That is what is truly important, not whether they are straight or gay. I hope this will be the last time I have to address this issue.

Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at

Posted Feb. 19, 2014

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