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US: NFL player starts controversy by tweeting a gay ‘joke’

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  1. My first reaction was that some people really need to get a sense of perspective, its a not paticularly funny joke someone made on twitter. Its not particularly offensive and doesn’t incite hatred.against gay people.

    However I do see that for many vulnerable gay people who are currently suffereing most acutely from homophobia they may see this as yet another of many little ways in which homophobic attitudes are being reinforced in a way ahich enables more direct and violent attacks.

    ‘its only a joke’ is commonly used by bullies to trivialise the impact that their other actions have on their victims.

    I don’t know anything about this player – I’m not really up on celebrities – but it may well be that he is simply not sensitive to how even a joke can impact a vulnerable person.

    1. Okay, go ahead and make excuses for him. But before you reach any conclusions, try doing this: insert the word “racist” for the word homophobic. Here’s how the joke will go now — “I’m racist just like I’m arachnophobic.I have nothing against ______ or spiders but I’d still scream if I found one in my…”

      Do you see where I’m going with this? It’s not possible that he didn’t know what he was saying. You just think there’s a possibly because you’re not inside his psyche and you’re not him-

      1. Don’t you see he’s actually playing with words and stereotypes? The joke is more about the word “phobia” than about “homo”… plus he’s an american footballer and he’d scream at a spider?

      2. Edward, I immediately thought the same thing you did. If you make the exact same joke about black people then it’s not so funny at all, is it? So it’s not funny in it’s original form either.

  2. i actually gave out a little chuckle, it might be because im from the UK and have an a very time with being gay. Which i find nothing an issue and gay jokes funny. i call myself a queer or a poofter as well as my friends or strangers.

    I find people in america take things very seriously, but its because of the culture and hatred to gays there (although my sister in law is from Louisiana and she loves gays apparently her whole town does).

    I am a great believer in that some things only have power if you give it power.

    I also know people who have had an easy life, but make it hard for themselves and take things too seriously.

    Not to start an argument, cause i am geninly asking. Can be something be more offensive than it is because of issues one has towards themselves?

  3. On it’s own, it doesn’t seem so bad, kinda funny actually.
    But thinking about current anti-LGBT sentiment being generated by political and religious interests within the United States, it is a little off.

    1. Read my post up above. Insert the word “racist” for homophobic – and see how funny the joke sounds-

  4. Would he have found it funny if the joke was turned around to him?

    Instead of homophobia, replace it with negrophobia and finding a black person in his bathtub…. of course, I would assume this version would not play well with black people.

    1. Purely speaking about the joke,It actually doesn’t work if you turn it around. So bad example.
      I thought it was funny. It works because the idea of a big burly sportsman sceaming at either a spider or a poofter is funny. I think it is actually saying I am not homophobic.
      Saying “I am homophobic like I am arachnophobic” is a way of admitting it is irrational.
      I don’t know the individual and if this is what he intended. That is another question.

    2. What is it with people on this board and their constant obsession with referencing black people?

      ‘Negrophobia’ – I mean, even thinking up that term says more about you than anything else

      The vast majority of people on this board perhaps need to realise that not everyone who contributes to PN white??

  5. Maybe he could have used a racist quip instead as a joke and see how far that one got him.

  6. The issue is that homophobic bullying is an erosive process incorporating a multitude of mechanisms, the constant ‘drip drip’ effect of all these llittle things can add up.

    No, it isn’t a big deal of itself. Does it contribute to a background of homophobia? Possibly.

    I think there is a risk that an over-reaction from the LGBT community loses us support in cases like these. A measured response explaining the cumulative effect of such things is sufficient in my view.

    For what its worth I found the joke mildly amusing.

    1. Brilliant post!

  7. Oh for Gawd’s sake, as is invariably the case, much ado about nothing.

    Not enough on their plate with their equal marriage campaign?

    Pathetic screamers!

    1. You’re the screamer using exclamation points in your post, Samuel dear. You don’t happen to be related to Rupert Everett are you??

      1. Ooh bitch!!!!

    2. I thought the real screamer here was the footballer? I mean, at a spider for Heaven’s sake – ! Not very manly, if you ask me.

      1. THAT’s the joke Rehan, the bit where we are supposed to go “ha ha”, but there appears to be an acute sense of humour bypass in these parts…

        1. The joker himself didn’t explain it that way though, did he?

  8. change the word homosexuals for black guy and see if it is still funny then.

    its sad that people use minorities as a punchline for their humour.

  9. Yet another dumb ‘roid-head who should have kept his mouth shut.

    1. Funny, I find a comment like that much more offensive then the joke he made about gays. So it’s alright for us to make offensive stereotypes, but when he does it we get to blow up in his face about it?

  10. People who are offended by this, or people who think others will be offended by the joke, I ask have you never been amused by a joke that uses a minority in its punch line? Whether it be white jokes, black jokes, gay jokes, lesbian, irish, asian, jokes about old or young, about people with blonde hair maybe?
    There are alot of people who seem to hunt around looking for ways to make innocent things offensive to a minority, then try to get said item, joke or saying removed from the world.
    I ask is the joke actually offensive? or is it a pun on the word Phobic. If i found a person (be they gay, straight, black or white) in my bath tub i think i would scream. Which is where the humor comes from, The joke plays with the missunderstanding of words. If people are going to force themselves to see offence in these jokes, which were not said to incite hatred or harm, then these people are infact the ones who need to change.
    I am gay and i laughed!

    1. As a general rule, making fun of minorities is best left to the relevant minorities themselves, don’t you think?

      1. Why?

        We should be able to laugh at each other and with each other without always being on the lookout for any perceived or remotely-veiled offence.

        People joke, It’s life – get over it!

        1. Personally I’m not impressed by non-Jews making jokes about tightfisted Jews, for example.

          And isn’t it perilously close to the justification used by schoolyard bullies picking on people they see as gay? “Can’t you take a joke?” (No thanks, I’d rather laugh at something actually funny.)

    2. Well said, Foxy. I’m also gay and I also laughed. Unless the guy has a history of making anti-LGBT or homophobic comments that I’m not aware of I see this as a harmless bit of word play.

  11. Khalid Muhammad 12 Oct 2012, 3:35pm

    this is great word play!! hes in the wrong profession;)

  12. Personally, I think the whole issue has been totally blown out of proportion. I can’t believe there are people saying he should be suspended for this.
    Personally, I’ve actually found the reactions to his joke more offensive than the joke itself. The whole “victimised minority” excuse to retaliate with vitriol at such a joke seriously disappoints me. He hasn’t actually gone out of his way to insult anyone, and actually seems to poke more fun at irrational fears and himself in the process, yet people are coming out of the woodwork to insult him for it.
    The guy could have been really offensive if he had wanted to be and could have added a few derogatory #’s to get his point across.
    If a joke isn’t that offensive don’t go out of your way to try and prove it’s offensive. We’re gay. It may not have been necessarily been particularly gay friendly, but it wasn’t particularly anti-gay either but throwing a hissy fit every time someone gives us a bit of stick isn’t going to get us anywhere.

  13. Of all jokes, this one is seen as bad? Personally I think that’s ludicrous. When I first heard it from a comedian a while back I not only found it funny but pro-gay. The whole premise of the joke is that the person is not homophobic in any hateful way but merely dislikes the idea of seeing a naked man as well as having a gay man go as far as to be naked in his bath without him knowing. Of course he does, he’s straight, I wouldn’t expect anything less and personally I wish more people was like this: despite disliking the image of what we do, have no problem with what we do.

    1. Exactly. I might say exactly the same about women. I’d probably scream if I saw a random women in my bath. Doesn’t mean I’m sexist to put it in a joke. (although, if she was naked that would probably be slightly more off-putting :/)

  14. Is it homophobic? Well this controversy is easily cleared up.
    I’m racist just like I’m arachnophobic. I have nothing against Blacks and spiders but I’d still scream if I found one in my bathtub.
    If that’s not offensive then neither is his joke.

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