Mixed Martial Arts

UFC President White apologizes for making gay slur

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The Canadian Press
4/3/2009 6:10:49 PM
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UFC president Dana White has apologized for making a gay slur contained in a profanity-laced video blog posted to YouTube in which he attacked a mixed martial arts journalist over a story about the UFC's backstage policies for managers and agents.

The video drew the ire of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, which said that White "expressed remorse" in a conversation with a GLAAD representative.

White made that public in another video posted on YouTube.

"So yesterday on my video blog, obviously I chose some words that offended and hurt some people," he said. "And anybody who knows me, knows that I would never, ever maliciously attack somebody who wasn't attacking me, OK? As far as the gay and lesbian community, my comments were not directed towards them. I have no problem with the gay or lesbian community. I'm actually a supporter of many of their issues.

"And the last thing that I would ever want anybody to think about me or think is cool is to go out and attack somebody because of their sexual orientation. That was not my intention, that's not the way I said it and I apologize for anybody that I've offended or hurt."

Loretta Hunt, who writes for Sherdog.com. wrote in a story published Wednesday that the UFC had told managers and agents that they could no longer be backstage with fighters at events.

The story, which cited anonymous managers and agents, said some managers believed the league's move was part of a larger attempt to wedge them out of business and deal directly with fighters.

White denied the story and unloaded on the author in his regular video blog.

Hunt told The Associated Press on Thursday night that she had not spoken to White since the video was released.

"I stand by the story, it's accurate," she said. "His reaction, I think it's more of a distraction from the actual story about the UFC and the managers and what's going on with them. Me, personally, I don't want to get involved in this.

"I'm a journalist, and journalists, sometimes you do stories that people don't like," Hunt added.

It's not the first time White has been questioned about his video blog. Reporters quizzed him about it in October in Chicago when he attacked the rival EliteXC organization.

In a February interview, UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta defended White's shoot from-the-lip style, which includes regular use of the F-bomb.

"Let me tell you, the reason that the fans love Dana, the media, everybody, is because he pulls no punches. You know when you're talking to him, that it's not going to be some statement that was vetted out by a group of executives ... Dana says it the way it is - good, bad or indifferent. He doesn't have that filter and I think fans appreciate that. They're sick of people not telling the truth or (not) being honest about things.

"Dana, he may be controversial because of it but I think that's part of his success as well."

White, who owns a piece of the UFC with Lorenzo Fertitta and brother Frank Fertitta, is immensely popular among most MMA fans.

The lastest controversy, however, will not help the UFC in its bid for mainstream acceptance.

Dana White (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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