NBA veteran Jason Collins on Monday revealed he is gay, making him the first U.S. professional athlete to do so while actively playing.
"I didn't set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I'm happy to start the conversation.
"I wish I wasn'' the kid in the classroom raising his hand and saying, 'I'm different.' If I had my way, someone else would have already done this. Nobody has, which is why I'm raising my hand," Collins wrote in an essay.
As social media reaction gained momentum, filmmaker Spike Lee found himself explaining equal rights 101 to fans and critics alike.
Here are a few of his early posts, followed by reaction from sports figures, athletes and politicians: http://storify.com/assignmentdesk1/why-does-spike-lee-have-to-defend-jason-collins/slideshow?utm_source=embed&utm_medium=publisher&utm_campaign=embed-header-slideshow