More than 1,500 New Yorkers gathered today in Manhattan to mourn the death of a 32 year-old gay man, who was shot down on Friday just blocks away from the historic Stonewall Inn in an apparent act of anti-gay bias.
NFL Hall of Famer Makes Anti-Gay Joke On-Air
Hampton said that when the Vikings meet the Super Bowl Champion New Orleans Saints for a rematch of last year’s NFC Championship game (which the Vikings lost in overtime) they need to “go down there and hit that town like Katrina."
This statement was horribly offensive, and Hampton has apologized for it.
But that wasn’t the only offensive statement Hampton made in the broadcast. When talking about the Dallas Cowboys, Hampton said "The Cowboys think they are Clint Eastwood; they're more of the Brokeback variety if you know what I'm talking about."
I think we have a pretty good idea of what he’s talking about. Hampton was trying to insult the Cowboys by comparing them to gay people – simple as that.
Hampton wasn’t actually saying the Cowboys players are gay, but by making this comment, Hampton telegraphed to his audience that gay men are not good enough, just as he doesn’t believe the Dallas Cowboys are good enough. Hampton was a tremendous player for the Chicago Bears throughout the 1980s, he’s a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, he’s a television personality, and whether he likes it or not, he’s a role model. Every day, millions of kids across this country are harassed, bullied and beaten because of attitudes like this. Hampton should not be using his platform to encourage homophobia.
Dan Hampton needs to apologize for this offensive and defamatory statement, just as he needed to apologize for his Katrina comment. We will be calling Pro Football Weekly to voice our concerns.