Golfer Tadd Fujikawa Comes out as Gay; 1st Male Professional to Do So

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistSeptember 12, 2018

HONOLULU, HI - JANUARY 12:  Tadd Fujikawa of the United States plays his shot from the 15th tee during the first round of the Sony Open In Hawaii at Waialae Country Club on January 12, 2017 in Honolulu, Hawaii.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Professional golfer Tadd Fujikawa announced Tuesday on Instagram that he is gay.

"So...I'm gay," the 27-year-old wrote in his caption. "Many of you may have already known that. I don't expect everyone to understand or accept me. But please be gracious enough to not push your beliefs on me or anyone in the LGBTQ community. My hope is this post will inspire each and every one of you to be more empathetic and loving towards one another."

Golf.com's Dylan Dethier reported Fujikawa is the first male professional golfer to come out publicly. According to Outsports' Cyd Zeigler, he is the first pro to come out who has appeared in the U.S. Open.

Per Zeigler, Fujikawa hadn't come out to anyone in golf prior to his social media post, but the reaction has been positive.

"The love and support have been overwhelming," he said following the announcement. "I'm so glad that I came out. I can finally be the best version of me."

As a golfer, the Hawaiian is best known for being the youngest to ever qualify for the U.S. Open as a 16-year-old in 2006. His career hasn't blossomed as expected, and he is ranked 2,042nd in the world.

He won the Hawaii State Open in 2017, though his only PGA Tour appearance in the past five years was the 2017 Sony Open in which he missed the cut.

Still, his announcement could be a groundbreaking moment for the sport.

"I can't wait for the day we all can live without feeling like we're different and excluded," Fujikawa added in his Instagram post. "A time where we don't have to come out, we can love the way we want to love and not be ashamed. We are all human and equal after all. So I dare you...spread love. Let's do our part to make this world a better place."

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