Kobe directed this gay slur at the referee after receiving a technical foul and the network broadcasting the game, TNT, caught Kobe on camera clearly showing the words clearly coming out of his mouth.
The Human Rights Campaign launched a statement against Bryant:
“What a disgrace for Kobe Bryant to use such horribly offensive and distasteful language, especially when millions of people are watching. 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. Bryant and the Lakers have a responsibility to speak up on this issue immediately. America is watching.”
Kobe responded by saying his works were out of frustration during that intense moment in the game and his words don’t express his feelings towards gays and lesbians. Also, he said he did not mean to offend anyone. Kobe can apologize all he wants, but his action in the game two nights ago definitely hurt his public image and still offended hundreds of people across the country.
The NBA has fined Bryant $100,000.
$100,000 for two words. Two totally inappropriate words that were completely unnecessary to say, even in the heat of a big game.
I hope Kobe and all NBA players think twice before opening their mouths and saying something offensive, especially during a nationally broad casted game. What Kobe said was completely disrespectful to the refereeing official and the LGBT community. I hope NBA players see that many young kids watch their every move in games and try to be just like the big guys they see on television, so please NBA players, and try to be better role models.