Ralph Lauren Cuts Ties With Pro Golfer Over Homophobic Slur

Justin Thomas apologizes after using word 'faggot' during Tournament of Champions
Ralph Lauren ends sponsorship of pro golfer over homophobic slur
Pro golfer Justin Thomas (screen capture)

The Ralph Lauren Corporation has announced an end to their 7-year sponsorship of pro golfer Justin Thomas less than a week after Thomas was heard using the word ‘faggot’ after missing a putt at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii.

The remark occurred after Thomas attempted a five-foot putt at the fourth hole when his shot went astray. He could clearly be heard saying “fa**ot” in frustration.

 

Upon finishing the round, Thomas was informed his remark had been picked up by the TV microphones. He was apparently unaware he’d even used the word.

The Golf Channel spoke to Thomas, currently ranked #3 in the world, about the remark and he immediately expressed his regret for using the word.

“It’s inexcusable – first off I just apologize,” said Thomas. “There’s no excuse. I’m an adult, a grown man. There’s absolutely no reason for me to say anything like that. It’s terrible. I’m extremely embarrassed. It’s not who I am. It’s not the kind of person that I am. Unfortunately I did it and I have to own up to it.”

“I found out when I got done with my round…it’s bad,” he added. “There’s no other way to put it. I need to do better.”

“I deeply apologize to everybody and anybody who I offended and I’ll be better because of it.”

The next day, Thomas finished the tournament in third place banking a $490,000 payday.

Apology aside, Ralph Lauren Corporation announced on Friday they were “disheartened” by the incident and distanced themselves from Thomas saying the use of the slur is “entirely inconsistent with our values.”

The full statement from the Ralph Lauren Corporation:

At the Ralph Lauren Corporation, we believe in the dignity of all people, regardless of age, race, gender identity, ethnicity, political affiliation or sexual orientation. This is part of our longstanding commitment to foster cultures of belonging – in the workplace and in communities around the world.

We are disheartened by Mr. Thomas’s recent language, which is entirely inconsistent with our values. While we acknowledge that he has apologized and recognizes the severity of his words, he is a paid ambassador of our brand and his actions conflict with the inclusive culture that we strive to uphold.

In reflecting on the responsibility we have to all of our stakeholders, we have decided to discontinue our sponsorship of Mr. Thomas at this time. As we make this decision, our hope is that Mr. Thomas does the hard and necessary work in order to partner with us again – truly examining this incident, learning, growing and ultimately using his platform to promote inclusion.

Gay former professional golfer Maya Reddy told Sky Sports this week that Thomas’ anti-LGBTQ language reflects homophobia in professional golf.

In 2016, Reddy qualified at the age of 23 to play on the Symetra Tour – the LPGA’s developmental tour – but decided to walk away from the sport due to incidents of discrimination and a lack of inclusivity in the culture of professional golf.

“I had tournament directors on mini-tours say xenophobic, racist, and homophobic things to me on the first tee, in the guise of a joke,” explained Reddy.

“I’m kind of in two minds about it,” said Reddy about the Thomas incident. “I think the fact that he apologised about it so quickly and with force, saying that this wasn’t OK and that he should do better, is really important because he acknowledges the harm that using that specific slur causes.

“I think the PGA Tour saying that it wasn’t OK and acknowledging the harm it causes is also very important,” she added. “That being said, what is frustrating for me and many who watched this play out, was that it was so easy for him to jump to that word.”

Podcast: Biden’s LGBTQ Promises, New TV Series ‘It’s A Sin,’ And More

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

In this week’s episode:

• What can queer people expect from Joe Biden’s first 100 days in office?

• Donald Trump takes a final swipe at LGBTQ Americans

• North Carolina begins enacting LGBTQ protections (again)

• Russell T. Davis, creator of the new UK TV drama It’s A Sin, shares his thoughts on casting gay actors in gay roles

• A lesbian former pro golfer speaks up about number 3 ranked Justin Thomas’s ‘faggot’ remark during this weekend’s tournament of champions

• Plus, two new commercials hit the gay sweet spot

All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report

News Round-Up: January 11, 2021

Cleveland Grover Meredith Jr. (images via social media)

Some news items you might have missed:

NY Times: Cleveland Grover Meredith Jr. (above) was charged with threatening Nancy Pelosi, the House speaker, after he traveled to Washington for the pro-Trump rally on Wednesday and sent a text message saying he would put “a bullet in her noggin on Live TV.” Meredith had been staying at a Holiday Inn in Washington and had weapons in his camper-style trailer, including a Glock handgun, a pistol, a Tavor X95 assault rifle and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.

Instinct Magazine: A reboot of Sex and the City is officially a go on HBO Max. Titled And Just Like That… the show will star Sarah Jessica Parker (Carrie Bradshaw), Cynthia Nixon (Miranda Hobbes) and Kristin Davis (Charlotte York Goldenblatt). Kim Cattrall, who played Samantha Jones in the original series, will not be returning.

The stars of the upcoming reboot of Sex and the City
A scene from Sex and the City

OUT: Beauty and the Beast star Luke Evans confirmed that he has split from his art director boyfriend Rafael Olarra. He also opened up about his desire to start a family, and said that maybe the time is right to start a family on his own.

Newsweek: An insurrectionist photographed hanging from the balcony of the Senate Chamber has begged for forgiveness, saying he got “caught up in the moment.” Josiah Colt, from Boise, Idaho, said his actions had been inappropriate and that he had not intended to “stain on our great Country’s Democratic process.” Colt took to social media to brag about his rampage through the Capitol.

Washington Post: The organizers of the PGA Championship canceled plans to hold the event at President Trump’s Bedminster, N.J., golf club in 2022 in the wake of last week’s Trump-inspired riot at the U.S. Capitol.

CNN: Two Capitol Police officers have been suspended and another person has been arrested for their alleged involvement in the riot on Jan. 6, said Rep. Tim Ryan, who is chair of the House Appropriations subcommittee handling the investigation into the police response to the Capitol attack last week. “One was the selfie officer and another was an officer that put a MAGA hat on that started directing some people around,” the lawmaker said.

A Capitol Police officer takes a selfie with an insurrectionist during the invasion of the U.S. Capitol
Capitol Police officer takes selfie during invasion of U.S. Capitol

Miami Herald: Adam Christian Johnson, the man captured in viral photo carrying Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s lectern from House chambers during the riot at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, has been arrested. He has been charged for numerous offenses including one count of theft of government property.

Fox News: In a rather odd exchange, Trump campaign national press secretary Hogan Gidley was asked by Fox anchor Bill Hemmer if Donald Trump feels “emasculated” after being kicked off social media. Gidley answered: “I wouldn’t say emasculated. The most masculine person I think to ever hold the White House is the president of the United States.” #OhReally?

Golfer Justin Thomas Apologizes For ‘Fa**ot’ Remark

Justin Thomas apologizes after using word 'faggot' during Tournament of Champions
Justin Thomas apologizes after using word 'faggot' during Tournament of Champions
Pro golfer Justin Thomas (screen capture)

Justin Thomas, currently the #3 pro golfer in the world, was apparently surprised to learn that television cameras caught him using a homophobic slur after missing a putt at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii on Saturday.

Thomas was attempting a five-foot putt at the fourth hole when his shot went astray. He could clearly be heard saying “faggot” in frustration.

The Golf Channel spoke to a clearly chagrined Thomas about the remark and he expressed his regret for using the word.

“It’s inexcusable – first off I just apologize,” said Thomas. “There’s no excuse. I’m an adult, a grown man. There’s absolutely no reason for me to say anything like that. It’s terrible. I’m extremely embarrassed. It’s not who I am. It’s not the kind of person that I am. Unfortunately I did it and I have to own up to it.”

“I found out when I got done with my round…it’s bad,” he added. “There’s no other way to put it. I need to do better.”

“I deeply apologize to everybody and anybody who I offended and I’ll be better because of it.”

Thomas expanded on those thoughts speaking to NBC Golf after finishing third on Sunday.

“I wish that I could learn to grow a different way than the way that I chose to do it, but unfortunately it’s in the past and there’s nothing I can do about it now,” said the 27-year-old.

“It definitely was a distraction out there today. But now I just get to take time going forward and try to become better because of it.”

Thomas banked a $490,000 payday for his third place finish.

Some on social media defended Thomas’s use of the slur:

But others wondered why it was this particular word that Thomas used.

It wasn’t f*ck, sh*t, dammit, dang it, or a host of other terms. It was a homophobic slur. That he didn’t even notice he used until it was pointed out.

What do you think, readers? Big deal? Little deal?

You may recall longtime sportscaster Thom Brennaman lost his job last September using a similar slur.

Thoughts on why a homophobic slur came out of Justin Thomas’s mouth versus a host of other swear words?

And why do so many dismiss the use of the word ‘faggot’ as being nothing to get upset about? Would it have been different if he’d used the N-word?

Newsmax Host: Media Timed Biden Win For When Trump Was On Golf Course

Reporting from the corner of Cynicism and Bitter…

A talking head at the far-right leaning streaming website Newsmax tried to insinuate all of the mainstream media (including Fox News Channel) colluded with the state of Pennsylvania to wait for Donald Trump to take his 284th trip to play golf before projecting former Vice President Joe Biden as the next president of the U.S.

“The timing on of all this, Emerald, certainly fascinates me. We talk a lot about media collusion with the Democratic Party and here we have the president just leaving the White House to go to his golf course to play a round of golf and he deserves to be able to do that.”

“We have the press conference that Rudy Giuliani is going to hold in Philadelphia happening. And at the very same time, all of all sudden, all of the networks, with the exception of Newsmax, decide that this is the time that they’re going to call the election. We are, here at Newsmax, not calling the election.”

Check out the creepy laugh when he says “He deserves to be able to do that…”

Practically everyone with an interest in the election returns figured out the result would probably be announced today. Why would Trump even play golf today?

And then, of course, there’s the fact that Trump lied to the American people four years ago and said there “wouldn’t be time for golf” if he was elected in 2016.

It’s almost Shakespearean that Trump learned he lost the race on a golf course.

(h/t JoeMyGod)

After Round Of Golf, Trump ‘Saddened’ By Passing Of John Lewis

Since the passing of Congressman John Lewis was announced, Donald Trump tweeted about 30 times without mentioning the civil rights icon.

He then got up, and according to reports, played around of golf with his buddy, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

Finally, this afternoon, after numerous other national leaders and all former presidents had issued public statements of condolences regarding Lewis’s death, Trump’s Twitter account shared a two-sentence tweet saying Trump and the First Lady are “saddened” by the congressman’s passing.


Trump: I’m Staying In DC To Make Sure Law & Order Is Enforced, Which Means ‘Play Golf’

Donald Trump is on the golf course again today.

Remember back in 2015 when he said, “I’m not going to have time to go play golf.”

Folks are counting his trips to his golf clubs.

“I was going to go to Bedminster, New Jersey, this weekend, but wanted to stay in Washington, D.C. to make sure LAW & ORDER is enforced,” Trump tweeted on Friday. “I am doing what is necessary to keep our communities safe.”

Which, of course, means ‘play golf.’

Trump Twitter Rant: “Barack Was Always Playing Golf!”

Donald Trump rants that media spent too much time on Hurricane Ida and not his "great agreement" with the Taliban

Predictably, Donald Trump has become triggered by the fact folks noticed he took time to play golf on Saturday and Sunday this weekend.

First, he lashed out at a campaign ad regarding his golf habit. Then, as he’s done many times in the past, he turned his focus on his predecessor claiming Obama was “always” playing golf.

Many on social media criticized the Donald for his bad timing as the coronavirus death toll nears 100,000. Plus, the obvious hypocrisy after frequently harping on President Obama playing golf during his 8 years in the White House.

Note – at this point in his administration, Obama had played 70 rounds of golf over more than three years. To date, Trump has played golf or visited one of his golf properties 251 times.

“Sleepy Joe’s representatives have just put out an ad saying that I went to play golf (exercise) today. They think I should stay in the White House at all times. What they didn’t say is that it’s the first time I’ve played golf in almost 3 months, that Biden was constantly…vacationing, relaxing & making shady deals with other countries, & that Barack was always playing golf, doing much of his traveling in a fume spewing 747 to play golf in Hawaii – Once even teeing off immediately after announcing the gruesome death of a great young man by ISIS!”

Please remember that when it comes to Trump’s hypocrisy, there’s always a tweet:

Trump Plays Golf As U.S. COVID-19 Deaths Approach 100K

According to Bloomberg News (and other sources), Donald Trump headed to the Trump National Golf Club in suburban Virginia today.

President Donald Trump headed to the golf course for the first time in over two months, engaging in his personal passion as well as attempting to show how the country can return to normal after stay-at-home orders taken against the coronavirus.

Trump arrived at the Trump National Golf Club in suburban Virginia around 10:30 a.m. on Saturday. He was spotted earlier wearing a white polo shirt and signature white “Make America Great Again” cap. The White House doesn’t always confirm Trump’s activities while at his golf courses.

The president’s most recent golf outing was March 8 at the Trump International course in West Palm Beach, Florida. He teed it up with members of the World Series-winning Washington Nationals baseball team, according to images posted by the players on social media. Trump played at the same course on March 7.

In 2014, Trump criticized President Barack Obama for playing golf when there were TWO cases of Ebola in the U.S.

As of today, there are 1.6 million cases of COVID-19 which has claimed the lives of nearly 100,000 Americans.

And according to the most recent report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate has soared to 14.7 percent.

But in 2014, when the unemployment rate was 5.8 percent and the Ebola outbreak had been contained, Trump took time to criticize Obama…?