Openly gay fighter ‘Golden Princess’ battles stigma, carries pride flag ahead of title defense in Brazil & More News Here

Washington Duarte grew to become the primary brazenly gay man to come back out throughout his MMA profession in Brazil, and he hopes it evokes others to comply with his steps in the long run.

A bantamweight fighter out of Laranjal do Jari, Brazil, “Golden Princess” is scheduled to return for the primary time for the reason that COVID-19 pandemic. Set to defend his Macaco Fighter title in his hometown in opposition to Rodrigo “Bad Boy” Melonio on Saturday, Duarte expects his profession to take off in 2022, particularly after well-liked Brazilian TV present Fantastico aired a narrative about him.

“I’m getting more opportunities now,” stated Duarte, who says his precise MMA report is 30-3 and web sites like Sherdog and Tapology are lacking most of these wins. “I have my gym where I teach muay Thai and boxing, I have my students, but all I’ve ever wanted was to be a full-time fighter. It’s time to focus on that.”

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Duarte isn’t the primary MMA fighter to come back out as gay in Brazil. Back in 2013, six years after his closing bout, former IVC and King of the Cage fighter Jefferson Silva introduced on social media that he had married a person.

With over a decade in expertise in MMA, Duarte stated he was at all times referred to as a gay fighter in his residence of Amapa, together with by UFC veteran and coaching companion Tiago Trator.

“I was always myself when I started fighting 12 years ago,” he instructed MMA Fighting. “Many people said, ‘Oh, he’s homosexual,’ but that doesn’t matter. I was always treated well wherever I went. I never felt rejected. Quite the opposite, really. Tiago Trator and coach Ricardo Fonseca always stood by my side.”

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“Tiago said he’s never seen a gay fighter before anywhere he went, and I always insist that there are many gay men out there [in MMA], but they don’t have the courage to come out. I knew one day the opportunity would come for me. And think about it, there are no [MMA fighters] to cheer for in the LGBT community. There’s no one representing them in a fight. I told him I’d do that, I want that LGBT flag.”

Duarte stated the MMA world is “very” homophobic, and he’s been via many conditions the place straight males merely refused to combat and even practice with him.

Photo by way of Washington Duarte

“There will always be people talking crap about you behind your back, but I was always respected everywhere I went, especially because I go hard in training,” he stated. “Some folks, together with straight males, don’t like to coach with me as a result of I’m robust.

“People told me they’ve heard others say they wouldn’t train with me because if I beat them up, it would mess up their heads. Especially in fights. Many promotions said people simply wouldn’t fight me, that they would leave them if they ever lost to me.”

In truth, Duarte stated one native fighter left Laranjal do Jari and by no means went again after getting knocked out by him in a MMA bout a few years in the past.

“I spoke to a member of his family, and he confirmed that’s why he left,” Duarte stated. “I thought it was a joke, that he already had a trip planned or whatever, but then he confirmed to me that he was too embarrassed to lose to a gay man.”

“I’m getting a lot of messages of support and people thanking me, saying they feel represented now,” he continued. “We don’t want something greater than respect. We don’t go to the health club to joke round. We go away intimacy for being closed doorways. If you practice jiu-jitsu and see your spouse rolling with a person and attending to sure positions, do you get mad? Why would it not make any distinction if it’s a gay man coaching with a man?

“People I know tell me they are afraid to come out because of how others might react. You don’t have to be afraid of who you are. You pay your bills, you’re the one putting in the work. Our sexuality has nothing to do with this.”

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