February 23, 2010
>University of Maryland Wrestler Takes His Position to the Mat
>Hudson Taylor is a top-ranking NCAA wrestler in his senior year at the University of Maryland, an outspoken advocate for LGBT rights, and someone whose personal convictions unabashedly permeate all areas of his life.
After wearing a Human Rights Campaign sticker during many of his matches earlier in the season, Hudson was interested to find that the controversy over his decision didn’t come from his opponents as much as it did from his own teammates, for whom name-calling and machismo are synonymous with the sport. As Hudson recalls:
A common way to degrade a teammate is to call them a “fag.” This is not unique to wrestling, but a common discourse for many male sports teams. It’s important to address it publicly and say something in front of the team.
As the captain of his wrestling team, his opinions carry a lot of weight and his team members look to him for guidance and leadership. Still, many of his teammates felt his outspokenness had no place on the mat, so Hudson has since ceased to wear his attention-grabbing sticker until his college career is over and his personal activism is his and his alone.
Without question, Hudson’s strong views towards LGBT equality will make him a stalwart advocate for years to come, as is illustrated in an interview by an amateur wrestling and martial arts site, The Open Mat. When asked to tell his fans three things they might not know about him, Hudson shared his support as an ally in a simple and straightforward manner:
I am very outspoken about equality. I believe that people should have the maximum amount of rights so long as it doesn’t infringe on other people’s rights. As a result, I am passionate about gay rights, feminist issues, or really any other issue pertaining to civil rights.
Hopefully, Hudson will help us to create a future where someone like him is a typical wrestler.