May 19, 2017 10:01 am
Updated: May 24, 2017 10:45 am

COMMENTARY: Pillar’s homophobic slur part of a bigger problem


The question that Toronto Blue Jay Kevin Pillar still hasn’t answered is, why THAT word ?

I don’t think too many people bought Pillar’s post-game explanation for shouting a homophobic slur at an Atlanta Braves pitcher.

He said it was part of the game to hurl insults at opposing players in the heat of a game.

That may be true, but again, why THAT  word?

Of all the insults he could have uttered, why was it that a homophobic slur was the first thing that came out of his mouth ?

Pillar has issued a second, more crafted apology that expressed regret for demeaning the LGBTQ community, and Major League Baseball and the Blue Jays issued similar releases, but are they sincere, or are those just empty words ?

This is the second time in the last few years that a Blue Jay has been disciplined for demeaning comments about the LGBTQ community, and in his post-game comments, Pillar may have exposed an uncomfortable truth about pro sports; maybe homophobia is part of the culture.

Sports writers tell me that it’s not uncommon to hear this kind of vulgar banter in locker rooms and sadly, we still see examples of how gay athletes are shunned by pro sports leagues.

The Pillar incident reminds us that, sadly, homophobia still festers in the boardrooms and the locker rooms of professional sport.


Bill Kelly is the host of Bill Kelly Show on AM 900 CHML and a commentator for Global News.

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