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Keller @ Large: How You Know A Social Breakthrough Has Taken Hold

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Michael Sam. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Michael Sam. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

WBZ-TV's Jon Keller Jon Keller
Jon Keller is WBZ-TV News' Political Analyst, and his "Keller A...
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BOSTON (CBS) – Social change tends to come slowly, even in a supposedly ultra-liberal place like Massachusetts.

I talked with outgoing Senate President Terry Murray Monday, the first woman ever elected to that job, and she didn’t hide her frustration over the state’s failure to ever have a female House speaker or governor.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

Another not-so-warm memory – the party’s biggest male leaders dumping Hilary Clinton for Barack Obama in 2008.

But in other ways, it seems like we’re doing better.

I prefer our reaction to the announcement of college football star Michael Sam that he is gay, which we seem to be tolerating better than some.

Eight NFL executives told Sports Illustrated that Sam can now expect fear and disdain to damage his prospects in the upcoming NFL draft.

“I don’t think football is ready for it just yet,” said one.

“This is going to drop him down” in the draft, said another.

“Do you want to be the team to break that barrier?”

But Patriots’ owner Robert Kraft says his team would be glad to give a talented gay man a fair chance, claiming their locker room would be “supportive” of Sam if they got him.

I bet a large majority of Patriots’ fans agree.

I was speaking with an out-of-state acquaintance the other day who asked me how gay marriage was going here, a decade after it was legalized. I told him – fine, I guess.

You never hear much about it. Gay couples get married, some get divorced, they live their lives – it’s mundane, boring even, an unremarkable part of everyday life.

And I suppose that’s how you know a social breakthrough has really taken hold – when equality is so obvious, so taken for granted, that no one even notices it anymore.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

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