Friday, February 16, 2007

Hardaway Learns the Hard Way

The Tim Hardaway debacle is so outrageous, I hardly know how to respond to it. It is the purest most vile form of bigotry and hatred I've heard in a long time. Sparked by the news of former NBA player John Amaechi's coming out, there is nothing veiled about Hardaway's response, nothing that slipped out accidentally. His words were deliberately chosen in a public forum. (Check out my post "What's So Funny" and click on the YouTube clip to hear the venom spewed directly from Hardaway's mouth followed by a bizarrely inappropriate response from he Today Show staff.) But thankfully this multi-millionaire who lives in a vacuum is learning that it's not okay to talk this way.

I must admit I was impressed with the NBA's swift and appropriate response to the situation and wondered why ABC did not act in a similar manner over the Isaiah Washington controversy. After banishing Hardaway from All-Star Weekend in Las Vegas completely, NBA Commissioner David Stern said, "It is inappropriate for him to be representing us given the disparity between his views and ours." He can probably also kiss his commentator career good bye.

Click here for the latest on this story. (There is also a video clip with the article where you can watch Hardaway eating humble pie behind the security gates of his multi-million dollar home.) Also note the apology issued from Hardaway's agent compared to his own: "I shouldn't have said I hate gay people or anything like that." (How heartfelt.) You'll notice he doesn't apologize for his bigotry, just for voicing it.

Other bloggers have responded to Hardaway's remarks in much more eloquent, creative and interesting ways than I. Check out what Spider, Bigezebear and Joe.My.God (who can always be counted on to provide the correct contact information should you want to respond to the offending party) have to say on the subject.

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At 1:53 PM, Blogger Matt said...

I haven't posted about this on my blog because I just can't think of the right - and original - words to say. I'm glad others have been so eloquent - and proactive, posting his contact information. What's sad is that so many comments have showed up on the news sites from people who support his view.

And I watched the video clip of his "apology" from behind his gated home - that was not an apology. It was nothing more than a CYA statement. He isn't sorry for what he said - he still hates gay people and wholeheartedly believes that we are deserving of that hatred he spewed. He's only sorry he got caught and is getting penalized for his hate speech. In that video, all he talked about was how hard this is for HIM, all the problems it's bringing him and his family. That's the root of hate - self-importance. He has utterly no concept of how it truly feels as a gay person to hear this kind of thing directed at us. As desensitized as we have had to become throughout our lives, this still made me cry to hear what he said.

At 2:08 PM, Blogger Spider said...

EXCELLENT post Michael... didn't you LOVE the video clip of him behind his safety gates - that is if you could understand him - after hearing that and reading the press release - you KNOW who wrote the press release...

But it will be OK - God will see him through - he said so - right there!

At 4:17 PM, Blogger angel, jr. said...

I'm not so sure about his apology. Is he apologizing because of the backlash or because no one backed him up?

When you speak so vehemently about something like this, it not only stems from ignorance, but also a more deep seeded hatred. You can say that people don't belong in certain places?

I'm not even sure if "rehab" can help someone who so vocally, without hesitation not only spewed ignorance, but true hatred.

I'm usually one to forgive statements which prove to be said out of ignorance (due to stereotyping), but not one which is clearly said using words like hate.

At 9:53 PM, Blogger Donnie said...

This fool is just sorry for getting "caught"....not for his remarks. That's what makes me want to spit!

At 4:30 AM, Blogger joshua said...

Yeah, I tried to call the # from JMG's blog, but the voice mail was full. Go figure!? The NBA would've been fools not to respond as quickly as they did. How tragically ironic that an African American said these things. I'm sure in the 60's he wouldn't have been to happy to hear some Good OL boy refer to him as a n-----r on a broadcast.

At 6:45 PM, Blogger Red7Eric said...

Personally, if someone is going to speak out against the GLBT community, I'm happier when there is nothing veiled, when there is nothing that slipped out accidentally.

If straight people heard what Hardaway said and were shocked: GOOD. Maybe they'll be shocked into action in a way that they wouldn't have if he'd peddled some "I don't mind gay people, I just don't like what they do in bed" bull$#!t ... y'know?

At 6:41 AM, Blogger Jesse Archer said...

Minorities that don't fully support other minorities have clearly forgotten their own past.
What a traitor.


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