Unlike Isiah Washington, Hardaway decided to send himself to gayhab and it appears to be taking. In case you forgot, he told the world that he hated gay people when asked how he would have felt about having a gay teammate. David Stern responded by tossing him out of Vegas and banning him from participating in any All-Star weekend activities.
Since then, Hardaway was encouraged by the backlash to his comments to get his learn on and deal with his homophobia. He’s been working with the YES Institute which “works to prevent youth suicide and ensure the healthy development of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth”.
“I just wanted to go in and get educated, that’s all. Get educated on what I said and why I said those things,” Hardaway said Thursday in an interview with The Associated Press. “I’m working on understanding it now. I’m not really trying to make amends. I’ve been there trying to get help.”
Give the man some credit. At least he didn’t pull a Mark Foley and claim that he was an alcoholic.
He’s been working with the institute on the DL so that it would seem like a publicity stunt or quick-fix. Employees of the institute have praised Hardaway for his progress and continuing work with the kids.
Director Martha Fugate said that Hardaway was “so genuine” and said she was suprised at “how real” their relationship became with him. That’s so Real World of them.
Seriously, Hardaway is doing exactly what he should be doing. Most people especially athletes never respond in a positive manner to criticism about homophobic, racist or sexist comments. In fact, they never realize why people are upset in the first place. He might want to get some of his fellow NBA players to join him and see the effects that prejudice can have on people especially the shorties.