The New York Knicks’ power forward Amar’e Stoudemire has been fined $50,000 by the NBA for calling a fan a “fag” over Twitter, according to the New York Daily News. After fan Brian Ferrelli criticized Stoudemire for last season’s performance via Twitter, Stoudemire tweeted him the direct message, ““Fuck you. I don’t have to do any thing fag.”
In response, the NBA slapped the player with the hefty fine yesterday for “using offensive and derogatory language.” Although Stoudemire had already apologized over Twitter, he released an official statement yesterday:
“I am a huge supporter of civil rights for all people. I am disappointed in myself for my statement to a fan. I should have known better and there is no excuse.”
To the NBA’s credit, it has been vigilant in trying to curb anti-gay trash talk among its players. Last year, it slapped the same fine on the Bulls’ Joakim Noah when he called a fan the same word. Kobe Bryant was fined $100,000 for hurling the word at a referee.
Photo: Keith Allison
This is really getting ridiculous. Neither he nor Kobe should’ve been fined.
Well as long as it’s a policy that has been made clear and available to all NBA players….
“Hefty fine!?!” When you make $50,000 a year then yes $50,000 is a hefty fine. When you make 2-3 million a year then $50,000 is what you use to wipe your ass. If they really gave a crap about gays they would realize this.
I do not support the idea of fining people for what they say on their Twitter account if they are saying it to people in their personal life, but once they direct it at fans then it crosses the line.
Isn’t this a violation of his right to free speech? Kobe’s happened on court, and while I still think he shouldn’t have been fined, it made more sense. Stoudemire’s was on his own personal page. This is just like the teacher who posted his beliefs to his Twitter. They’re off the “clock”. Don’t get how they can be penalized. No matter how you feel about this guy or the word he used, we should all be threatened when free speech is treated as a crime punishable by law.
Or punishable by losing your job for not paying, that’s their livelihood.
@KV: As has been explained on this site many, many times…
Freedom of Speech refers to the fact that GOVERNMENT can make no law to infringe upon the freedom of speech.
It does not guarantee you the right to be a douche or restrict the company that you work for from fining you or firing you for being a douche.
@Daez: Understood but this was on his personal time. The NBA doesn’t own him 24/7. Did Tracy Morgan have to pay any fines to NBC? Nope. Did Dr. Laura have to pay any fines after calling us “nature’s error” (repeatedly)? Nope AND Paramount even sweetened her deal by syndicating her show. I guess my issue isn’t only free speech but unfair treatment of some when others got a pass. But I guess that’s what happens when we try to regulate what people can and “can’t” say.
Recall that the NBA isn’t NBC. And it isn’t Paramount. And it isn’t any other company you want to list that has an employee who used offensive language. Every company has their own policies on employee conduct. I’m no lawyer, but I’m sure NBA contracts include language about “personal conduct” and “reflecting the brand” and etc.
So any claims of unfair treatment of some while others get a pass must be made with respect to employees of the same organization, e.g. the NBA.
Sports with mostly straight men as fans don’t need to do this, but they did it anyway and that’s why I salute NBA.
dan savage uses the word and he is a hero… LOL
dan has made a name for himself for calling out kids that say the word among other things
perhaps we should fine him and all other GLBT’s $50,000 that use the word.
Perhaps “we” aren’t an organization with any legal right to fine. When Dan Savage enters an employment agreement where personal conduct, including use of offensive language, is fine-worthy, then you can talk about his conduct.
Dan is living a “do as I say… not as I do” life
he was the one that started the “It gets Better” campaign… when actually he is proving that it really does not get better… adults get bullied for their beliefs also.
And he seems to do it often… he should know better
@JAW: “Hey F—–!” lol You mean he didn’t get fined? Shocking!
Who do you expect to fine Dan Savage? He’s under no obligation to refrain from offensive language. And if Stoudemire weren’t employed by the NBA, he too would be under no obligation. Pointing to Dan Savage as an example of a double-standard ignores everything about Stoudemire’s and Savage’s individual situations.
And if anyone was under the impression that his/her beliefs won’t be challenged and ridiculed as an adult, then we need celebrities, politicians and random YouTube users to start making “Welcome to Reality” videos.
Freedom of speech, like the right to guns, the right to religion, the right to drive, the right to contribute, the right to advertise and other personal rights should end the minute that those rights infringe on the safety of or endanger others. These freedoms are for legitimate self empowerment and advancement, not to incite violence against other citizens or as weapons to be used to threaten or hurt others. Fortunately or unfortunately, contracts, especially employment contracts, can be made or demanded by employers which curtail those rights (even in the case of curtailing legal recourse from customers or employees). Fines for serious offenses, especially legal and regulatory ones, should never be mere slaps-on-the-wrist. Otherwise, such punishments are ineffective and merely become part of the cost of doing business in our free wheeling capitalist society. Personally, I am very glad –if there are to be any banned words or recognized hate language, that sexual putdowns are included on the list.
It would mean something and might take the edge off the “freedom of speech” aspect if the NBA were to donate this money to an LGBT youth service. It isn’t much money to these players but a nice chunk for that kind of charity.
@Ruhlmann: Bet you Mr. Stoudemire gets a $50,000 bonus this Christmas. It’s really all for show.
@Colin: What should we do COLON givbe him a prize for being another HATE/VIOLENCE MONGERING bigot?
@JAW: Exactly. I agree with you completely.
@John: Ridiculous. An isolated comment makes him a “hate/violence mongering bigot?” If that’s how we measure bigotry and hate and violence, then pretty much everyone the world over needs to be fined for saying something offensive. Because obviously everyone is really a hate and violence-mongering bigot when they use any kind of slur at any time. *eyeroll*
I’m stunned at all the people here who don’t think even Kobe Bryant should’ve been fined. I can see the argument for Amare but I just can’t seem to figure out what’s so hard to understand about Kobe’s situation.
The NBA considers the word “faggot” hate speech. Hate speech is against NBA policy and every player knows what the consequences are. Kobe Bryant screamed at the official “you fucking faggot” over a call no-less. He broke the rules and he had to suffer the consequences.
What are we not understanding here?
The Gay community has turned into a bunch of pussies. So afarid of being seen as too “sensitive” or too “pc” that we now frown upon the notion that someone may be held accountable for anti-gay slurs/rhetoric. We’ve fought so long to finally be extended and treated with the same standard of digity and respect by the majority and when we finally start to get it we’re scared to own it. Go fucking figure.
TWEET DECK!!! that is all
@Robert: Then if anti-gay slurs should be freely used than also so should racist and anti-Semitic slurs. Bring back Mel Gibson and Michael Richards. Where are there careers? If there is a double-standard of hate speech that applies only to gay people, then that’s a frightening trend.
@Robert: I agree with you Robert. 100%. I wish more gay people were like you. Homophobia damages gay people and you can see that with all of the step n’ fetch it comments.
It’s a slippery slope toward no free speech at all.
Making up stuff is fun!
@redbird: I agree. Soon the NBA will fining all of us if we use offensive language.
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