US: Jason Collins to introduce Ryan Lewis and Macklemore at VMAs for equal marriage hit

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Openly gay NBA basketball star Jason Collins will on Sunday evening take to the stage at the MTV Video Music Awards to introduce Macklemore and Ryan Lewis when they perform their equal marriage themed summer hit.

The NBA star will introduce the rap duo for a performance of their hit Same Love, which features lyrics, and a video with a strong message of support for equal marriage.

The VMAs will take place at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on Sunday evening.

The song Same Love, from the pair’s latest album, addresses Macklemore’s personal experiences and feelings around the issue of same-sex relationships and equal marriage, and features a video spanning the lives of a gay couple, including a happy marriage.

The song was inspired by Referendum 74, at which voters in the US state of Washington voted to uphold a law legalising equal marriage.

Collins in May spoke about his sexuality, confirming he is gay in an article in Sports Illustrated magazine. He said: “I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black. And I’m gay.”

A poll revealed that over two-thirds of Americans support Collins’ decision to come out as gay.

After coming out, the star was subject to a tirade of abuse on the social networking site Twitter, including a number of death threats.

Despite some abusive messages, Collins received thousands of messages of support, including from President Barack Obama, and First Lady Michelle Obama, former President Bill Clinton, his teammates, coaches, the Commissioner of the NBA, and countless others.

Jason since appeared on the Jimmy Kimmel show with twin brother Jarron, who joked that he had missed “red flags” that his brother was gay, and was given a t-shirt which said “I’m the straight one”.

The song Same Love, about equal marriage in the US, which was seen as a positive sign that attitudes towards same-sex marriages are changing for the better, both in the rap industry, and in general, is available to view below.