The company that dominates professional wrestling in the United States is scrubbing a star who’s been a household name for decades.
Because of a racial slur he used in a private conversation years ago!
Now, the professional wrestler known as Hulk Hogan is trying to rescue his reputation, issuing an apology Friday after his name was erased by World Wrestling Entertainment.
The company removed Hogan, whose real name is Terry Bollea, from its Hall of Fame on Friday and scrubbed any mention of “The Hulkster” from its website, including the merchandise section.
The obscenity-laced conversation in question was recorded between Hogan and Heather Clem, wife of his former friend, Bubba “the Love Sponge” Clem.
Hogan had an affair with Heather Clem.
A sex tape featuring Hogan and Heather Clem was released by the website Gawker, which Hogan is suing for $100 million in damages.
“I guess we’re all a little racist,” he says on the recording, discussing daughter Brooke Hogan’s musical career, according to the National Enquirer, which reported that he had accused his daughter of sleeping with a black man.
“She is making some real bad decisions now,” Hogan said, according to the Enquirer. “My daughter Brooke jumped sides on me. I spent $2-3 million on her music career, I’ve done everything like a jackass for her.”
Hulk complained about a “billionaire black guy” who offered to fund her career.
“I don’t know if Brooke was f***ing the black guy’s son,” he said, according to the Enquirer.
“I mean, I don’t have double standards. I mean, I am a racist, to a point, f***ing n***ers. But then when it comes to nice people and sh*t, and whatever,” he said.
Hogan’s tirade continued, the Enquirer reported.
“I mean, I’d rather if she was going to f**k some n***er, I’d rather have her marry an 8-foot-tall n***er worth a hundred million dollars! Like a basketball player!
“I guess we’re all a little racist. F***ing n***er.”
In a statement to People magazine, Hogan seemingly acknowledged using the language in the conversation, which he said occurred eight years ago, and apologized.
“Eight years ago, I used offensive language during a conversation. It was unacceptable for me to have used that offensive language; there is no excuse for it; and I apologize for having done it,” he wrote.
“This is not who I am. I believe very strongly that every person in the world is important and should not be treated differently based on race, gender, orientation, religious beliefs or otherwise,” the statement reads. “I am disappointed with myself that I used language that is offensive and inconsistent with my own beliefs.”
Hogan’s attorney David Houston told People that Hogan had resigned from WWE “because he didn’t want to put them or his family through this,” but WWE said he was fired.
“WWE terminated its contract with Terry Bollea (aka Hulk Hogan). WWE is committed to embracing and celebrating individuals from all backgrounds as demonstrated by the diversity of our employees, performers and fans worldwide,” the company wrote in a statement to the Enquirer.
The only other time any and all mentions of a wrestler were scrubbed from the WWE website was when it removed Chris Benoit’s name and likeness after it was discovered he had killed his wife and child before killing himself in June 2007.
As with Benoit, historic footage of Hogan remains on the WWE Network.
The Twitterverse had plenty to say on the matter.
— Davis Cole (@DavisCole) July 24, 2015
What they’re doing to @HulkHogan is bullshit. Social media again has made public opinion take over common sense and discretion.
— eMIX (@eMIX305) July 24, 2015
Being racist is not a crime. You can’t blast somebody because of their beliefs. #FreeHulkHogan
— Nick Miller (@nickmiller1352) July 24, 2015
How long until demands to remove Hulk Hogan shirts from Amazon/Wal-Mart/Ebay starts? #FreeHulkHogan
— Paul Kersey (@sbpdl) July 24, 2015
— Sean (@UKXTRUTH) July 24, 2015
WWE disowned Hulk Hogan faster than Chris Benoit.
— ✈Mel Vega♚ (@Gmel_Genuine) July 24, 2015
@HulkHogan You didn’t say anything racist at all?! And that’s coming from a African American male. You’re good!
— Fashoo™ (@OhhFashoo) July 24, 2015
— Dennis Rodman (@dennisrodman) July 24, 2015
— Dennis Rodman (@dennisrodman) July 24, 2015
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