Steeler Joey Porter Blames Media for Outrage Over Gay Slur

JoeyporterJoey Porter is mad the NFL fined him for calling another player a “fag” on camera so he’s blaming it on the media. He tells ESPN:

“I just don’t understand how you can get a DUI or fail a drug test and nothing happens. You say something, you get fined. That just don’t make any sense. You’d think if you get a DUI or something, you should get fined. If you fail a drug test, you should get fined. But for saying a word, you get fined. That’s kind of backward to me. There was enough publicity about it. Y’all keep talking about it. Y’all going to make them do something. If y’all wouldn’t have just kept talking about it, [the fine] wouldn’t have happened. Y’all need a story so you keep talking about it. So they say, all right, let’s fine him then because everybody seems to be upset about it.”

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  1. Brian says

    Yeah, Joey. It’s because we kept talking about it. If we hadn’t, nothing would have been done to punish your behavior. You deserved it. Maybe the person who needs to stop running their mouths so much is you.

    Oh, and you’re right about the drug tests and DUI. The NFL should enforce fines for those infractions (if they don’t already).

  2. rudy says

    An idiot and a cry baby. He should be fined for those offenses also. What a pathetic excuse for a human being. The putative “fine” cost him less than a new pair of diamond earbobs.

  3. Alex says

    Not to sound like a right-wing fundamentalist, but I’m not in favor of fining people for using words. I don’t think Michael Richards should be fined, either. Language is a funny thing; the more you excoriate particular words, the greater their power as fetishes becomes. Furthermore, if you ban “faggot” and “nigger,” soon enough someone will ban words you actually want to use. Besides, one does have a certain power in these situations. In a concert, one can walk out or ask for the return of the price of a ticket–VERY powerful; or one can change the channel when homophobes come on. America HAS changed, thank God, since the days when Eddie Murphy splattered fag jokes all over his stand-up routine; that there’s even a backlash to saying the word is remarkable to this 36-year-old. But it’s wrong to fine someone for using a word that’s in the culture. Not only is it singling one person out for an entire phenomenon; it’s also paradoxically signalling to the world that the word has devastated gays simply through its use–and the fact is, it hasn’t.

  4. says

    Alex, a company has a right to take action against an employee who uses inappropriate language while on their dime. The NFL is paying big bucks for these players and they have rules to follow. They have agreed to that system when they signed their contract. Being the NFL isn’t going to fire a player they already dished out big bucks for…they fine them. No business should have to put up with an employee who uses any sort of derogatory comments that could insult any of their “patrons”. Yes, people can walk out of a game or change the channel, but the NFL doesn’t want that anymore than a restaurant wants one of their waiters saying inappropriate words in front of their customers.

    Michael Richards situation is completely different. His speech isn’t going to get him fined, but he suffers from his actions if he can’t get work again. Joey Porter is lucky he still has a job.

  5. jimmyboyo says

    Maybe DUI’s are not fined by the NFL because one is already punished for it via the courts. Maybe the fines are a way to punish someone for bad actions who would otherwise just skate by.

    What if someone used the N word on the field? How would he feel?

  6. tjc says

    As was already stated, the fine wasn’t from the government, which can only limit speech under certain narrow circumstances (which are getting broader as Bush/Cheney stay in office).

    The fine was from his company, which presumably has something in his contract which allows for this punishment.

  7. Alex says

    Hey Andy–Thanks for the corrective; you’re right, companies should have the right to cite their employees when they do things that make the company look bad. But since the goal is to change the culture within the NFL, suppose NFL [get ready for some wishful thinking here] gave that $10,000 to P-FLAG, and gave the player a warning? They could institute a “three strikes-you’re out” kind of rule; that way NFL participates in the punishment, rather than just citing an individual. I mean, who are we fooling here? That word gets batted around constantly in sports, if my brief experience in soccer, lacrosse, and baseball was any indication. Making people tremble for saying it (or any word) doesn’t make the word less powerful, it just drives usage underground. And though I don’t know a great deal about NFL player rules (and honestly, I don’t care), doesn’t this guy have a point–IF he’s telling the truth? DUI endangers lives; using the word “fag” hurts people’s feelings. You’d have to do some pretty discursive thinking to put the two actions in the same league.

    Look, no one who reads this blog (except for a few wingnuts who might be monitoring it for a potential homosexual apocalypse) likes to hear the word “fag,” me included. It’s really about how we respond when it is uttered. And I don’t think the smartest way to do that is to hate some representative of a culture or subculture, and it’s certainly not to ban the use of the word. I know it would be unlikely, but would we really want to see a player fined if he’s asked what he’s reading and he replies, “That novel by Larry Kramer, Faggots?” It’s not too far-fetched, folks… A teacher in Maryland was recently chastised for saying the word, “nigger,” and why did she say it? She was reading aloud an essay by Gloria Naylor (part of the county’s approved reading list, please note) that included the word.

    Oh dear, I think my head’s about to be bitten off…

  8. Daniel says

    Alex, I generally agree with you. I certainly don’t think having laws against such terms would help. However, I still think there is a huge disconnect as far as the reactions to these hateful terms. I think the Michael Richards incident shows the effect–none of which comes from or should come from the government–when someone uses the word “nigger”. However, anti-gay slurs are used usually without any notice or ill effects at all. I don’t think we can meet these words by not saying anything. The person who uses these words should pay some sort of cost at least socially. Hating the person using hateful speach may or may not be helpful–but it is understandable.

  9. soulbrotha says

    Alex, not bitten off, just gnawed at.

    A “3-strikes” policy and giving the money to P-Flag is a good idea, but it will not stop players from using the word. It will still be driven underground.

    What should happen is the player needs to be made to do community service/volunteer work for a gay organization, where he can interact with the gay community and gain some sensitivity. A month for each time he uses it. THEN 3 strikes, you’re out. This will accomplish several things:1. Hopefully he will make a connection between “fags” and humanity and see that the term is dereogartory. 2. He will get a taste of his own medicine when his teammates heckle the shit out of him and reinforce that “fag” is not cool. 3. The heckling teammates will then be shaking in THEIR gear when he reports THEIR heckling and the “punishment” is imposed on them, thus creating a domino affect.

    P.S. it was Patrick that responded to you, not Andy.

  10. says

    It was their fault. You know, THOSE PEOPLE. The media. They did it. I didn’t do it. They made it happen. I didn’t make it happen. They’re responsible, I’m not responsible. Wah!

    Fecking muppet.

  11. Marc says

    I have diagnosed him with clinical ignunce, y’all.

    Don’t worry, this nobody playa will have spent all of his NFL $$$ in a few years after he’s done playing.

    Enjoy your 15 minutes Joey.

  12. robo says

    this guy is a jerk.He takes no responsibility for his actions. He is a role model, kids look up too him.And this is how he talks. Good foe the nfl for teaching him, words are powerful and he should take his position more seriously. Although from the sounds of it he willtake nothing away from this lesson.

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