Chris Kluwe Hub




Anti-gay Vikings Coach Mike Priefer Says He's 'A Better Man' After Undergoing Sensitivity Training

Minnesota Vikings coach Mike Priefer, who was suspended for two games and required to attend sensitivity classes following allegations earlier this year that he was active in promoting locker room homophobia and anti-LGBT hostility, is speaking out about his time away from the team while at sensitivity training.

PrieferThe AP reports:

"It was very positive," Priefer told reporters at team headquarters Thursday in his first public comments since the suspension was lifted on Sunday night. "It was very professionally done. Like anything else in life, if you put a lot into it, you're going to get a lot out of it. I tell my kids that. I tell our players that. So I went into it with a great attitude and I got a lot out of it, to be honest with you."

When asked if he's changed in any way after being deluged with criticism for making the comments and taking the subsequent training, Priefer said, "I don't know if I've changed, but I think I have more awareness of my surroundings and other people around me. I think I'm a better man because of it."

Considering that this is the guy who allegedly said "We should round up all the gays, send them to an island, and then nuke it until it glows," the fact that Priefer isn't sure if he's had a change of heart is disturbing to say the least. 


Homophobic Minnesota Vikings Special Teams Coach Mike Priefer Returns From Suspension

Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 1.33.08 PMMinnesota Vikings special teams coach Mike Priefer is being reinstated today after sitting out two games of his three game suspension. Priefer’s suspension came earlier this year following accusations from former Vikings kicker Chris Kluwe claiming that Priefer was active and central to the promotion of locker room homophobia and general hostility.

“Mike Priefer also said on multiple occasions that I would wind up burning in hell with the gays, and that the only truth was Jesus Christ and the Bible.” Kluwe wrote in an open letter Deadspin published in January. “He said all this in a semi-joking tone, and I responded in kind, as I felt a yelling match with my coach over human rights would greatly diminish my chances of remaining employed."

While Priefer denied the accusations against him, a third party investigation into the matter corroborated at least one of Kluwe’s claims of homophobic exchanges with priefer. Kluwe, who claimed that he was let go from the Vikings because of his support of the LGBT community, recently reached a settlement with the Minnesota team after threatening to sue.

"I regret what has occurred and what I said.” Priefer said in a press conference following his suspension. “I am extremely sorry but I will learn from this situation and will work on educating others to create more tolerance and respect."


Chris Kluwe And The Minnesota Vikings Make Details Of Their Settlement Public: VIDEO

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Chris Kluwe and the Minnesota Vikings made the specific details of their agreed settlement public in a press conference earlier this afternoon.

“[O]ur focus remains on maintaining a culture of tolerance, inclusion and respect, and creating the best workplace environment for our players, coaches and staff,” said Vikings owner Mark Wilf. “We are glad a resolution of this matter has been reached, and we look forward to continuing our efforts to create positive awareness of these issues.”

The Vikings, Wilf ebaorated, will continue to contribute an undisclosed amount of financial support to a number of LGBTQ organizations. Additionally, the Vikings will redouble their committment to its “Zero Tolerance Policy for any discrimination and harassment because of race, religion, national origin or sexual orientation.”

“I intend to continue to speak out on behalf of marriage equality,” said Kluwe. “I am pleased to be a part of the impact the Vikings material charitable contributions will have on LGBT and related causes.”

Watch a clip of the joint press conference, AFTER THE JUMP…

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Minnesota Vikings And Chris Kluwe Reach Settlement In Homophobic Coach Investigation

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Chris Kluwe and the the Minnesota Vikings have reached a settlement following Kluwe’s pursuit of a lawsuit against the football franchise. After being let go from the Vikings, Kluwe made headlines accusing Viking management of explicit homophobia, which he claims ultimately led to his termination.

In response to Kluwe’s allegations, Vikings management initiated an internal review of events focusing on special teams coach Mike Priefer. Were the team’s investigation not to result in swift punishment for Priefer, Kluwe warned, he would file a formal lawsuit. The Vikings ultimately suspended Priefer for three games and fined him $100,000 to be paid to LGBT organizations, penalties that Kluwe felt were not enough.

“The parties intend to hold a joint press conference early next week to make public the terms of a settlement arrived at late last night,” Kluwe’s lawyer Clayton Halunen told USA Today.


Minnesota Lawmakers Urge Vikings To Issue Harsher Punishment To Anti-Gay Coach

A group of 18 Minnesota lawmakers have written a letter to Vikings owner Zygi Wilf asking him to subject homophobic coach Mike Priefer to penalties harsher than those handed down last week following an investigation initiated by anti-gay claims made by former kicker Chris Kluwe. Priefer was suspended for three games and ordered to donate money to LGBT organizations. The Democratic politicians have called those disciplinary actions "inadequate" and also want the team to make the entire investigation public.

LawKARE 11, who interviewed one of those lawmakers, Rep. Frank Hornstein, reports:

"Racism, homophobia, discrimination in sports in unacceptable no matter where it comes from," Hornstein remarked. "And again, this should be taken much more seriously by the Vikings organization."

The letter was penned by Sen. Scott Dibble, a gay Minneapolis legislator and chief author of the Freedom to Marry Act in the Senate in 2013, which opened the door to same-sex marriages in Minnesota.

"This remark was outrageous when you stop and think about it," Dibble told KARE. "Can you imagine someone saying the same thing about any other minority group? People shouldn't joke about genocide and get away with it."

In his letter to Wilf, Dibble pointed out that L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling was banned from the NBA and ordered to sell his team for making racially charged remarks to a female friend.

The letter reads in part:

6a00d8341c730253ef01a511e54061970cIt bears remembering that the taxpayers are contributing nearly a half billion dollars to build a new stadium for the Vikings, allowing a considerable boost in its revenues. It is also important to make note of the fact that Minnesota taxpayers are being asked yet again to contribute to the bottom line of an already very profitable industry with $10 billion in revenues, in the form of continuing a sales tax exemption on ticket purchases for the NFL’s 2018 Super Bowl. In light of this enormous public effort, it is imperative that your organization be held accountable. This is especially true when it would seem that Vikings leadership is turning a blind eye to such egregious misconduct and seems determined to remain opaque to the very public which has invested so much in the success of your team. 

You can read the full letter here.

The Vikings issued the following response:

As a result of the findings, we have taken the appropriate actions to hold individuals accountable and to ensure we continue to have a workplace environment that respects tolerance, diversity and inclusion. We have addressed this matter completely and are unable to comment further due to pending litigation.

Watch the KARE 11 news segment, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Chris Kluwe Outraged Over Light Punishment for Homophobic Vikings Coach, Still Plans to Sue: VIDEO

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Former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe is outraged over the punishment meted out by the team to special teams coach Mike Priefer following the results of an investigation in to Kluwe's claims of homophobic remarks and anti-gay bias by the team.

Priefer was suspended for 3 games and ordered to make a donation to LGBT organizations.

Kluwe spoke to KMSP about the investigation.

Said Kluwe:

"Players who get caught smoking weed or DUI get 4 games, and you're telling me the guy who made a comment like 'let's round up all the gays put them on an island nuke it till it glows' -- he's only going to get a slap on the wrist? ... I think he's probably sorry that all of this ever happened. I don't think he's truly sorry because in the report he kind of backs his way and says yeah, I kind of said it...The NFL is a league where you can get redemption for killing someone, for beating your wife in an elevator, for driving drunk, for a whole variety of things but when you speak out for civil rights, that's the one thing you cannot get redeemed for."

Kluwe says he still plans to sue the organization and his attorney is still requesting the full 150-page investigation.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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