Icons and the problems with racial comments.

by Mr.Awesome on September 8, 2015 - 9:53pm


Hulk Hogan says his history of using the n-word isn't evidence of racism. It's a byproduct of his upbringing.

"I'm not a racist but I never should have said what I said. It was wrong. I'm embarrassed by it," the iconic professional wrestler said in an interview on ABC's "Good Morning America" on Monday. "People need to realize that you inherit things from your environment. And where I grew up was south Tampa, Port Tampa, and it was a really rough neighborhood, very low income. And all my friends, we greeted each other saying that word."

The slur, Hogan said, was "thrown around like it was nothing."

"The environment I grew up in in south Tampa and all my white friends, all my black friends, to hear the word on a daily basis when they'd greet me in the morning, that's what they'd say to me, 'Good morning,' so-and-so," he added.

Related: Hogan sex tape trial could destroy Gawker

The National Enquirer reported last month on an audio recording in which Hogan, whose real name is Terry Bollea, said the n-word. World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) responded swiftly, firing Hogan and booting him from its hall of fame.

Hogan, 62, said he was shocked by the WWE's actions and that the fallout over the controversy made him suicidal.

"I was completely broken and destroyed and said, 'What's the easiest way out of this?' I mean, I was lost," he told "Good Morning America."

Related: Hogan vs. Gawker showdown put off until March

The damning audio transcript surfaced as Hogan is entangled in an epic legal battle against Gawker Media. Hogan has filed a $100 million invasion of privacy claim against the company for publishing portions of a sex tape on its flagship gossip website, Gawker.com. Gawker contends the tape was newsworthy. The trial, which was originally scheduled to begin in July, has been delayed until next year.

Hogan's legal team claimed last month that Gawker leaked the transcript that contained the slurs, something that Gawker denied.

In a statement released Monday after the interview aired, Gawker Media said that Hogan "certainly has a lot to apologize for."

"He's finally been exposed as the hypocrite he really is," the statement said.

A teary Hogan was plenty apologetic on Monday. At one point during the interview, he asked ABC's Amy Robach for a moment to compose himself.

He begged his fans for forgiveness, and insisted that "there's not a racist bone in my body."

Hogan said he used the epithet to describe his daughter's then-boyfriend because he was "upset over a situation that happened." His daughter, Brooke Bollea, "showed me more love than anybody," Hogan said.

"She's been so supportive," Hogan said of his daughter.



The Realities of Racism Within the Domain of Iconic Populus



In the  article of Hulk Hogan related to the outbreak of racial slurs and racism, “Hulk Hogan: I’m not a racist,” reported by CNNMoney (New York) August 31, 2015: 11:24 AM ET, the author demonstrates Hogans response toward such alligations and consequences of his actions. Terry Bollea, a.k.a “Hulk Hogan” used offensive language in correspondence to citizens and fellow employees of opposite race.  The author states that the repeated use of the n-word being as described as “being thrown around as nothing.” (http://money.cnn.com/2015/08/31/media/hulk-hogan/index.html) The author further explains the fallouts of choosing to use such terms freely as well as the potential embarrassment such terms could bring about your standings both professionally and personally. Hogan stated that this disrespect was simply due to his upbringing, and didn’t realize he was doing wrong or was “at fault” if you will.



The fact that Hogan constantly blamed his upbringing is ridiculous. No matter what scenario you were raised in, is still no excuse for rude of obscene behavior. Hulk Hogan is a 62 years of age, and has been surrounded by populous and environments that dictated and /or demonstrated how wrong the use of words as the n-word are, when you’re own race is not corresponding to the race which in turn makes it extremely inappropriate.  For example, a black person calling another black person the n-word for instance. The use of racial classification based on skin color is highly subjective. Hogan using the “n-word” is no different than someone calling a Caucasian “cracker”. In some places the “n-word” is fairly associated as a way to classify a black person as “thug” like, which is both immature as well as extremely short minded as well as racist. Diamond states, “Regarding hierarchy, traditional classifications that emphasize skin color face unresolvable ambiguities”. (Race Without Color, Jared Diamond, Tuesday November 01, 1994.) Hulk clearly blamed is childhood living in Tampa, stating “People need to realize that you inherit things from your environment. And where I grew up was south Tampa, Port Tampa, and it was a really rough neighborhood, very low income. And all my friends, we greeted each other saying that word”. (http://money.cnn.com/2015/08/31/media/hulk-hogan/index.html) Diamond shows great emphasis on the ideology that Race isn’t about color, that it is a lot more broad in actualization rather than being narrow minded concerned solely on skin color. 






  • Race Without Color, Jared Diamond, Tuesday November 01, 1994


First of all, your pseudonym greatly caught my attention, and decided to read your article on Hulk Hogan’s accusation of being racist, since I was unaware of the issue.

You seem greatly opposed to Hogan’s acts and defense, and I understand your frustration. Although I strongly agree that as a grown man, he should have know better than to throw around offensive language, I believe we, as a society, accuse easily people of being racist. I do not know the context in which the wrestler controversially employed the negatively connoted slang, but one would hope his intensions behind it were not bad. I do think apologizing is the right thing to do because people were affected by it, but we should not humiliate him.

Now again, when should we severe, and when should we let it slide? The article I read denounces cultural appropriation, which seems related to this issue. I believe Hogan uses more the slang as if he belong to the culture associated with, than by means of diminishing someone. It seems that he did not clearly stated he believed white people being superior to black people, so it is difficult to definitely define him as a racist. Still, social norms exist for a reason, and Hogan should clearly change his behaviour to prevent hurting more people. I wonder if people would react the same way if the roles were reversed, or is it even possible for that to happen? How does it depict the white culture if there is not even an equal term?