(CBS) Four former Chicago athletes have taken a stand for gay marriage in Illinois.

Ernie Banks, Richard Dent, Hunter Hillenmeyer and Brendon Ayanbadejo have all signed a letter showing support for the Religious Freedom and Marriage Act, urging state legislators in the Illinois House of Representatives to pass the bill that would allow gay marriage in Illinois.

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The bill has already been approved in the Illinois Senate and has the support of Gov. Pat Quinn.

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“We come from a variety of backgrounds, and we have played different sports for different teams. But one thing that binds us together is our belief in the importance of fairness and respect – in all aspects of life,” an excerpt of the letter states.

The letter says that by disallowing gay marriage, we are treating homosexuals as “second-class citizens.”

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For the full letter, please click here.