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Letters: Kobe Bryant creates a stir with a slur

The Lakers' star has apologized, but is that enough?

April 16, 2011
  • Lakers guard Kobe Bryant strikes a familiar pose as he goes back on defense against the Spurs on Tuesday night.
Lakers guard Kobe Bryant strikes a familiar pose as he goes back on defense… (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles…)

Given the number of kids who look up to Kobe Bryant, the loose use of this slur among kids, the rate of harassment of gay teenagers, and the number of them who commit suicide every year, the best outcome here would be for Kobe to turn a negative into a positive: He could make a public service commercial for the Trevor Project, the "It Gets Better" Project, or one of the gay-straight alliances, urging teenagers to drop use of that word and sensitize them to the impact on their classmates.

Lyn Greenberg

Los Angeles

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As anyone who has played competitive sports understands, in the heat of battle athletes often impulsively blurt out profanities that in a calmer moment in a different context, they would never say. Are we really that overreactive, oversensitive, and insecure in our "gotcha" culture that we have to punish someone for free speech that was just in bad taste? If Kobe Bryant is punished, should we also fine the millions of non-athletes who use similar language during rush-hour traffic, cursing the IRS, or during a tiff with their spouse? Give me a break.

Robert Ouriel

Los Angeles

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Yes, Kobe Bryant's outburst was offensive, boorish and childish. Yes, it calls for a public apology. But honestly, must we endure paragraph-long explanations for every "gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender advocacy, civil rights, and anti-defamation" group under the sun? The Thursday Sports section reads like a style sheet for political correctness.

William Cwirla

Hacienda Heights

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I am bothered by oversensitive watchdogs jumping on Kobe and blowing this out of proportion. Much the way Plaschke does in taking the politically correct stance and demanding another pound of flesh from Kobe. Kobe was angry, forgot the camera is always on him, but has apologized. Let's move on. Personally, I am more concerned about Bynum's knee than Kobe's mouth.

Jim Miller

Add Kobe's temper tantrum slur to those of Al Campanis and Jimmy the Greek for a trifecta of homophobic and racist impudence.

Dan Anzel

Los Angeles

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Well, I'm glad Kobe at least shows equal disrespect for women and men.

Andrew Sacks

Fontana

Momentum?

Once again Phil Jackson and I watched another large lead evaporate. This time with less than 10 minutes remaining in the game against Sacramento, the Lakers turn a 20-point lead into a three-point deficit with eight seconds to go. As the lead vanished before our eyes, Phil sat frozen, like he was the Lincoln Memorial in his big chair. I, however, was yelling, "No, no, no, slow it down, Phil! Hey Phil, call a timeout!"

John Broecker

Lake Forest

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The Lakers seem to be confused on the concept. Going into the playoffs, the idea is to instill fear in your opponents, not your fans.

P.J. Gendell

Beverly Hills

Still losers

Another Clippers season comes to an end, a season of amazing Blake Griffin dunks, the coming of age of Eric Gordon, the emergence of DeAndre Jordan, and the flashy advent of Mo Williams. A year that guaranteed that no one will ever look at a Kia Optima the same.

And the result of all those milestones? The Clippers finish 32-50 — three games better than the 29-53 during their 2009-10 season. Assuming that rate of improvement, it should be just eight years until the Clippers vie for best NBA record. Of course, at that point Blake Griffin will have begun contemplating retirement and folks are likely to have long been celebrating the world championships of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Anaheim Royals.

Steve Bloch

Laguna Niguel

A sea of blue

The violence that has engulfed Dodger Stadium in recent years says a hell of a lot more about us who attend games more than it does about Frank McCourt. McCourt is McCourt. But us? It's like we lose civility, religion, morals, responsibility and everything else we stand for as soon as we cross the turnstiles.

We turn a blind eye to the idiots harassing innocent women and abusing other men. We sit at our seats allowing the jerks behind us to hurl expletives while our sons and daughters sit next to us afraid to confront them or complain to an usher. We have allowed the dog to run wild.

Stanley Alvarez

West Covina

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If you feel it's your First Amendment right to drop F-bombs regardless of any children or seniors sitting around you at Dodger Stadium, then you're part of the problem.

If you are someone who thinks it's fun to hit a beach ball in the stands, especially keeping it away from security, then you're part of the problem.

If you yuk it up when the kiss-cam shows a couple on DodgerVision, egging them on to French kiss for all to see, then you're part of the problem.

If you boo when security takes away an unruly fan, then you're part of the problem.

Brian Crosby

Burbank

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I am puzzled. As a homeowner I carry $500K in liability insurance on my property. Yesterday in The Times, there was an ad that said " Los Angeles Times proudly joins the Los Angeles Dodgers ... in supporting the Bryan Stow Family — Support the Bryan Stow Fund."

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