Rajon Rondo has taken to social media in the wake of news he used a homophobic slur toward referee Bill Kennedy during the game in Mexico City earlier this month. He had to when on Monday Kennedy came out as gay — the optics for the league and Rondo are terrible. Rondo is very conscious of his image, even as he pretends not to care what people say.
Rondo tweeted this out Monday after the Kings’ practice.
What else did you expect him to say? That said, it’s not enough.
First, you do not use the word in question unless you are trying to offend.
Second, to parse the words, that is not an apology to Kennedy or anyone else. Kings GM Vlade Divac did come out and say Rondo apologized, reports James Ham of CSNBayArea.com.
That last statement from Vlade sums up an issue where sports has lagged national trends and changes — sport is behind society in general in acceptance of gays and lesbians (and bi and transgendered). The word used in question should not ever be used — not in the heat of the moment, not under any circumstance. It doesn’t matter if Rondo knew Kennedy was gay or not (my guess is that he did although there is no way to prove it, however it does make things look worse). There are certain words we as a society have deemed offensive and not to be used; this word has become one of them. As it should be. Yet to this day it is casually thrown around locker rooms from high school on up, which speaks to the level change that needs to occur within much of sport. (If you’re about to post a comment about free speech, note that Rondo is free to say what he wants but not the consequence of those actions. That is true on any controversial topic.)
That Rondo would use that word draws into question his feelings about the LGBT community.
This is not going to go away quickly for Rondo or the Kings, and that Twitter “apology” likely will not be enough.