And of course, right after we saw a great success in stopping this type of language in one sport, it showed up in another when Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant appeared to shout an anti-gay slur at a referee after being called for a technical foul. We released this statement to the media:
“Discriminatory slurs have no place on or off the court,” said GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios. “Professional sports players need to set a better example for young people who use words like this on the playground and in our schools, creating a climate of intolerance and hostility. The LA Lakers have a responsibility to educate their fans about why this word is unacceptable.”GLAAD has reached out to the L.A. Lakers and will provide updates as they become available. Recently, GLAAD has worked with sports groups including the New York Yankees, the World Wrestling Federation (WWE) and the Hershey Bears to address issues of homophobia in sports. The Hershey Bears, top minor league affiliate of the Washington Capitals, told GLAAD this week the team would be taking steps to put a stop to anti-gay taunts from fans.