The big news from Tuesday’s Los Angeles Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs game had nothing to do with Andrew Bynum’s injury or the fact the defending champions snapped their five-game losing streak.
Instead, the buzz on Wednesday has to do with Lakers guard Kobe Bryant, who lost his cool during the third quarter after he was issued a technical foul from Bennie Adams. After storming to the bench, Bryant yelled at Adams and mouthed a curse word along with a derogatory word for homosexuals.
While you can make the argument that this happens all the time while guys are “in the heat of the moment,” it doesn’t make it right.
LGBT civil rights organization The Human Rights Campaign agrees and released the following statement: "Hopefully Mr. Bryant will recognize that as a person with such fame and influence, the use of such language not only offends millions of LGBT people around the world, but also perpetuates a culture of discrimination and hate that all of us, most notably Mr. Bryant, should be working to eradicate."
What’s more troubling than what Bryant said on the court was his statement regarding his actions last night.
“What I said last night should not be taken literally,” Bryant said in a statement. “My actions were out of frustration during the heat of the game, period. The words expressed do NOT reflect my feelings towards the gay and lesbian communities and were NOT meant to offend anyone.”
Notice something missing from that statement? How about “I’m sorry,” Kobe? Instead of saying I was wrong and have no business using that slur in the first place, Bryant tries to indirectly justify his actions.
With the NBA Playoffs just days away, the last thing NBA commissioner David Stern wants to deal with is the league’s biggest superstar (Sorry, LeBron) in the middle of a media firestorm. The fastest way to extinguish this fire is to act swiftly and discipline Bryant accordingly for his actions.
(Photo: AP Photo/Chris Carlson)