After Anti-Semitic Slur, NBA Player Meyers Leonard Suspended By Team, Dropped By Sponsors

Illustration for article titled After Anti-Semitic Slur, NBA Player Meyers Leonard Suspended By Team, Dropped By Sponsors
Photo: Michael Reaves (Getty Images)

In the wake of dropping a clear anti-Semitic taunt during a game of Call of Duty, NBA player Meyers Leonard has been suspended by his team, the Miami Heat, and dropped by a number of his sponsors.

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Leonard—who last year was also the only player to remain on his feet before a game while his teammates knelt to support the Black Lives Matter movement—later apologised for using the term “kike bitch”, claiming to somehow have not known what it meant:

Despite this, Leonard has since been dropped by two of his sponsors, PC company Origin:

And controller makes SCUF (both companies are owned by Corsair):

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Leonard will also “be away from the team indefinitely” while the Heat—owned by Israeli-American businessman Micky Arison—and the NBA conduct an “investigation”.

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Gaming clan FaZe also noted that while Leonard wasn’t a member, they were nevertheless cutting ties with him:

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Update, 3/11/21, 2:56pm—As reported by CNN, the NBA has fined Leonard $50,000. Leonard also “spoke to representatives of the Anti-Defamation League,” according to a statement by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. CNN reports that the NBAhas also mandated Leonard to participate in a cultural diversity program.”

Luke Plunkett is a Senior Editor based in Canberra, Australia. He has written a book on cosplay, designed a game about airplanes, and also runs cosplay.kotaku.com.

DISCUSSION

I don’t like how all these apology statements talk about how the person may have “hurt” other people and other communities. When minorities are angry, we are not angry because we are victims, like we are weak people to are slighted by the smallest breeze. We are angry because you disrespected us. You signaled that you do not respect us as who we are. You were demeaning, both to us and yourself. Apologize for being disrespectful.