By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com December 20 2002 1:00 AM ET
Damir Dokic, father to the world's ninth-ranked female tennis player, Jelena Dokic, has declared that more than 40% of the world women's tennis tour is lesbian, adding, "I couldn't stand it if Jelena turned out to be one of them. I'd kill myself." And now former Australian tennis champion Margaret Court has come out in support of Dokic's comments, which were made to The [London] Sun. Court, who has said that gay people are not "normal," told a Perth radio station that she can "understand him saying that, but probably not going to the extent that he's talking about."
Court runs a ministry that teaches that gay people can be "changed," and she also cautioned Dokic about his extreme reaction if his daughter, who is straight, were to ever come out as a lesbian. "[Parents often] don't know how to...cope with it when you've had a young person that has grown up normally and then they go from the normal way of life over to another lifestyle," she said. Court said she was not qualified to comment on the number of lesbians on the tour. "I don't know the circuit today, but at one stage back in the late '70s, early '80s, it was fairly high," she said.