NFL player defends right to use word “f*ggot” in public

I love the smell of burnt football player in the morning. Smells like… suspension and a really large fine.

Cyd Zeigler has the rundown, copies of the tweets and all, but in a nutshell..

1. On November 21, presumably-hetero NFL player with hunky gay porn name, Tank Carder, tweets the word “f*ggot” at someone he’s upset with (he used the entire word, I’m just using asterisks because it risks shutting down the ads when I use such words on the blog).

2. Yesterday, November 26, Tank then responds to people who are clearly offended by his use of the anti-gay slur by tweeting “yeah they all gettin butt hurt.”  Get it?  Butt hurt.  Gay people.  He’s now making a homophobic joke about gay people “taking it up the a–.”  Real winner, this one.

3. Then Tank tweets: “I don’t agree with being gay or lesbian at all, but saying f*ggot doesn’t make me a homophobe.  It’s just a word.”

Uh huh.

4. Then Tank issues a non-apology apology in which he says the use of the word was justified because he thought the other person was “bashing team sports” – because we’re all familiar with the “bashing team sports” exemption to the ban on using racial, ethnic, and homophobic slurs in polite society.

5. Then, suddenly, Tank is all honey and goodness:

“I want to sincerely apologize for the word I used! I did not in anyway mean to offend anyone!  That tweet doesn’t define me as a person!”

Then how about the tweet where you appear to make a butt-f’g joke about gay people? Does that define you as a person? Or the tweet where you said you don’t “agree” with being gay — sic, as it’s not entirely clear how you can “agree” or “disagree” with someone “being gay”:

GAY GUY: Hi, I’m gay.

TANK CARDER: Sorry, I disagree.

Or how about the tweet where you suggested that it’s okay to call someone a “f*ggot” if they’re “bashing team sports.”

I’m sorry, but I’m not feeling the love here, from good ole Tank.  I’m wondering if  someone at the NFL threatened Tank privately, and told him he’d better STFU or they were going to suspend him and/or fine him, and that’s why Tank suddenly found Jesus and apologized. Because five whole days passed since that first tweet, and Tank wasn’t exactly in an apology kind of mood until last night.

As Cyd noted in the column:

Major League Soccer puts the penalty at a three-game suspension for this kind of language. The NBA puts the cost at $50k.

We’ll all be watching how the NFL handles this repeatedly bigoted outburst.  Cyd ads:

Nothing short of a one-game suspension and that game check being donated to an LGBT sports organization will suffice as a punishment for this. It cannot be tolerated.

No it can’t.  But will it, NFL?

CyberDisobedience on Substack | @aravosis | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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71 Responses to “NFL player defends right to use word “f*ggot” in public”

  1. John says:

    Y’all are all need to read the bible and then ask your self what’s right

  2. DrRandyG says:

    See that “Dr” at the front of my handle? Yeah, that’s earned. You misuse English grammar and have the nerve to say I’M “not real bright”? Look in a mirror.

  3. jigs5502 says:

    Straight here…live in Cleveland…heard this story. I’m fine with the LGBT community. The saddest thing besides the offensive, ignorant position of Carder, is that this event is likely to be the most significant event in his entire football career. After all, I’ve seen him play. He’s simply NOT that good. He’ll be remembered a just another jackass with a big mouth and a narrow mind.

  4. nickname says:

    Leave a message…I dont know about you guys, (I don’t mean to offend anyone and it doesn’t define me as a person) but a “Tank Carder” is way more hilarious than a Santorum or Filthy Sanchez.
    …Make it happen.

  5. rebel_sf says:

    Given his choice of words are” f****t” and “butt hurt”, when trying to make a point, I suspect he may be familiar with the emotional impact of both. The NFL closet must be a hell of a place to be.

  6. rerutled says:

    It would mean he’s acting like a racist, which is all that truly matters. What remains hidden in his heart is irrelevant to the targets of his racism.

  7. Butch1 says:

    ” Your a faggot?” This idiot’s grammar is that of a third grader. He could at least use the contraction for YOU ARE ( you’re ) . Perhaps he should have gone to school and paid attention a bit more in second and third grades and he would know this. As for using the “F” bomb, it is just as bad as using the “N” bomb for blacks and he should know that. If he doesn’t care then the three-game suspension, $50,000.00 fine might get his attention as someone mentioned as a punishment instead of a one-game suspension. He’s supposed to be a professional player and they are out in front of the public whether they tweet or speak in front of the microphones. He knows this. If he is going to act like a child and talk like this, he needs to be fined for it. He’s an adult and he needs to keep his racist/homophobic thoughts to himself.

  8. justadood says:

    Looked like Tank needed to have a sit-down with Chris Kluwe to clear up his muddled mind

  9. mamazboy says:

    Today’s word, kids, is closet. C-L-O-S-E-T.

  10. rmthunter says:

    Short answer — he’s an idiot. Of course he knows that calling someone a “f*ggot” is an insult — that’s why he did it.

  11. Butch Rowley says:

    Too little too late as far as apologies go.. Mr. Carder, I will NEVER be a fan. NFL, if you are keeping an eye on the development of this story, understand that I will be working with a great many people to actively demote Mr. Carder’s standing as a professional athlete. Using a demeaning hate word, regardless of what letter it begins with, identifies the user as a person who hates. Your words immediately following your hateful outburst speak your truth on this matter. The polished apology you have made so many days later does NOTHING to convince me that you are worthy to receive ANY time, effort or energy from a fan like me.

  12. PDQ says:

    He’d better watch out. Some butch lesbian will come along and mess him up good! He won’t even see it coming!

  13. J.W. Swift says:

    He absolutely has the ‘right’ to say anything or use any words he wants. We all do. Doesn’t mean that he should, just because he can. There are consequences to the things that one says, and being a moron who doesn’t understand those consequences or how those words might affect or even hurt others, is no excuse. When you don’t experience any significant consequences for something bad that you’ve done, you don’t learn a lesson from it, and are likely to do it again.

  14. J.W. Swift says:

    Freedom of speech does NOT include freedom from the consequences of whatever stuff someone decides to let spew forth from their mouths.

  15. Sweetie says:

    With freedom to act comes consequences for one’s actions.

    He’s free to do a lot of things. He’s also free to deal with the freedom others have to respond.

  16. Sweetie says:

    “I have never heard it used towards me or my fellow homosexuals”


    “and i have never taken offense when someone else says it.”


  17. Sweetie says:

    Not really. Heterosexism gets its power from the heterosexual majority.

  18. Sweetie says:

    Technically it doesn’t. It’s a matter of context. In this case, the context is clear, though.

  19. Sweetie says:


  20. Sweetie says:

    lame excuse

    butt hurt definitely has a strong anti-gay connotation

  21. Sweetie says:


    Of course it’s anti-gay. That’s the origin of the expression. That’s what’s supposed to give it power.

  22. Sweetie says:

    The AP is linguistically challenged. They can’t bring themselves to type heterosexism. Too many characters, apparently.

  23. lou says:

    except that its not anti-gay. Sorry, you cant just take over a word and claim that its now hate speech. Butt-Hurt means someone who gets all upset about something that does not matter, or someone who cant take a joke. I have never heard it used towards me or my fellow homosexuals, and i have never taken offense when someone else says it. Please, act rationally….and stop looking for a fight. Additionally, the word faggot is old and passe, i dont care who uses it and why they use it now.

  24. OtterQueen says:

    Only if he doesn’t agree with being black.

  25. zorbear says:

    Lets face it, men will do anything. Or, as Avery Schreiber sang in “Galaxina”, “Any old port in a storm, any old hole…”

  26. Don Chandler says:

    “Homophobe” is a good word for him. He doesn’t like gays and the right question to him, “why are you afraid of gays?” or “How do they threaten you?” Since there are no good answers, he must be simply a homophobe–afraid of homosexuality for no good reason. It puts them on the defensive. But yeah, he’s also a gay-hating bigot.

  27. cole3244 says:

    i defend tanks right to use that word, i mean being a moron has its advantages, (what is a tank anyway), also as a neanderthal he has more options then an intelligent person.

  28. Free-Talker says:

    Freedom of speech , you people ever hear of it ?? Im sick and tired of people like you trying to trounce all over it . If the guy wants to say Faggot so be it . You people dont like Freedom of speech then get your keister to North Korea . I guarantee you’ll shut your mouth then !!

  29. goulo says:

    You’re not real aware of what “sarcasm” is (even when someone explicitly points out they’re being sarcastic) or the difference between “your” and “you’re”.

  30. Zorba says:

    Yes, indeed, “gay-hating bigot” would be an accurate term to use.

  31. goulo says:

    Sure, and by similar reasoning, denigrating something by saying “that’s so gay” or insulting someone by saying “you’re so gay” is not at all homophobic since it’s common internet slang too.

  32. goulo says:

    But the reason the expression is used to mock people is probably NOT because some straight guys are into it, don’t you think?

  33. Zorba says:

    And I suppose that the word “[email protected]” is just a word. As are the words “sp!c” or “w*p” or any other denigrating, disgusting terms used for people who are “not like you.”

    {{Sigh}} Yes, he needs to be suspended for at least one game, if not more. I also like the idea of the game check being donated to an LGBT sports organization.

  34. nicho says:

    Anal sex is not exclusively a gay thing. Straight men are obsessed with it.

  35. karmanot says:

    So does Teddy bear.

  36. your not real bright and probably a bigot!

  37. karmanot says:

    Jerk troll

  38. your not kidding anyone!

  39. karmanot says:

    The tired is you . Either you are very young and live at home with a protective momma or you are not gay, which I suspect is the case. You can take that ‘LOL’ and shove it where the butt hurt don’t shine.

  40. He’s a closet case, most haters are.

  41. karmanot says:

    As a gay person you are building a bubble out of sticks and stones kiddo.

  42. karmanot says:

    You get a grip. I don’t imagine you grew up afraid every day being assaulted after words like that were hurled your way. Golly jee wizo Crystal get over your ignorant bullshit and worry about something this important. .

  43. BeccaM says:

    The f-word itself aside, the rest of Zeigler’s tweets and statements make it abundantly clear he is a gay-hating bigot*.

    * = Since the Associated Press has said ‘homophobe’ isn’t an appropriate word to use, I figured I’ll switch to the more accurately descriptive term.

  44. Butch1 says:

    Uh, yes it does. Just because you say it doesn’t will not change the fact one bit. You are a bigot and an homophobe. Wear it proudly because that is exactly what you are.

  45. karmanot says:

    Oh yes it is.

  46. You haven’t named one yet, Ted. As Sister Martinella used to tell us 7th and 8th graders back at St. Andrews in Ft. Worth (we had her two years because no one else could or would “handle” us): “Still waiting!”

  47. You didn’t name one Ted. As Sister Martinella used to tell us 7th graders at St. Andrews in Ft. Worth: “Still waiting!”

  48. rerutled says:

    He’s wrong. The definition you chose — from among 3 in Urban Dictionary — is not the most popular definition in Urban Dictionary. The most popular definition in Urban Dictionary was the May 2, 2006 “Word of the Day”, defined as: “some one who doesnt [sic] know how to take a joke, and they take the joke like they just took it to the ass”.

    It’s a homophobic phrase, coined and used as such.


  49. Ted in Dallas says:

    @Thomas Coleman…”The language used is an expression of the homophobic culture of major
    professional sports, which has, without exception, successfully
    prevented a single openly gay athlete from taking the field or the
    court.” That simply is not true.

  50. Naja pallida says:

    Or maybe simply teach him the difference between “your” and “you’re”.

  51. Actually, no Ted. The language used is an expression of the homophobic culture of major professional sports, which has, without exception, successfully prevented a single openly gay athlete from taking the field or the court. Sadly, whether we like it or not, that’s what gives those words their destructive power — and vice versa. It takes two to tango or to trash talk. If you doubt it, ask a closeted pro player or check the recollections of those who came out post-retirement.

  52. Sam says:

    @Skeptical Cicada….”Would a white player using the N-word cause the wrath of the black community and the NFL to rain down on him? Yes.” So blacks/NFL wrath “rains down” on him. How does that make him racist?

  53. jenjen64 says:

    No one “wants to be offended” as you claim. It IS offensive no matter how you are trying to discredit it as “just a word”. There is hostility in that word which leads to more than hurt feelings or being offended.

  54. Ted in Dallas says:

    @Skeptical Cicada…If you kill yourself over being called “bad” name like fag or queer, you have more mental problems then you know. “Your attack-the-gays schtick is tired.” LOL. Sorry, I just don’t get that statement.

  55. rerutled says:

    Well, words do have meaning. And for some, this one means “I’m going to beat you to death.” And I didn’t give it that meaning. I merely take it as the meaning, since it seems to be common, as in the link I gave above. I don’t think that’s LOLable, and I don’t think it’s very thoughtful of you to laugh that epithets are often used during the beatings and murders that many in our community have experienced.

  56. Skeptical Cicada says:

    Obviously anti-gay in substance and definitely anti-gay in intended use here. Stop getting all butt-hurt over people legitimately criticizing it.

  57. Skeptical Cicada says:

    Sticks and stones and 1,000 dead gay kids from suicide. Your attack-the-gays schtick is tired.

  58. Skeptical Cicada says:

    Unless he’s gay, your analogy is off.

    Would a white player using the N-word cause the wrath of the black community and the NFL to rain down on him? Yes.

  59. Skeptical Cicada says:

    No, lol @ you for defending your man by attacking anybody who objects to anti-gay bigotry. You get over the criticism of your man, dear.

  60. Crystal says:

    lol..then you wonder why we are bashed on.. you get feelings hurt by a simple word. who cares who says what.. be proud of who you are instead of what people say.. golly people, get a grip.. he’s a kid who says stuff, who cares! Get over it and worry about something more important..

  61. Ted in Dallas says:

    Implied threat???? LOL. OK. Again. Stick and stones. You are the one giving those words power.

  62. I wonder if education wouldn’t be a better way to go here. Somebody should get him tickets to see a gay rugby game and blow his mind.

  63. ChicagoJ says:

    Would using the N-word make him racist?

  64. SirMoogie says:

    It has it’s origins in homophobia, like “cocksucker”. That it is now used frequently, doesn’t change the anti-gay connotations.

  65. DrRandyG says:

    Using the word “f*ggot” doesn’t make him a homophobe – and using the word “n*gger” doesn’t make someone a racist. /sarcasm

  66. rerutled says:

    Except, I’m sure, when it’s used as a threat. And using it otherwise, is an implied threat, too, meant to put you in your place.

  67. Of course using the word doesn’t make him a homophobe. He’s a homophobe whether or not he uses denigrating slurs .

  68. Ted in Dallas says:

    He’s right. As a gay person, I could care less if someone calls me a faggot. Its just a word. I have better things to worry about than words like “faggot” or “Queer”, etc. People who are offended by those types of words, want to be offended. Sticks and stones, kids.

  69. nicho says:

    You’re right. “An inappropriately strong negative emotional
    response from a perceived personal insult. Characterized by strong
    feelings of shame. Frequently associated with a cessation of
    communication and overt hostility towards the ‘aggressor.'” (From Urban Dictionary)

  70. Strawgrasper says:

    Inexcusable, and he should be either fined or suspended. But to be fair, the phrase “butt-hurt” is internet slang for a disproportionate emotional response to a relatively insignificant slight. It’s not really a homophobic (sorry, AP, I meant “anti-gay”) slur in the strict sense of the word.

  71. nicho says:

    Someone needs to tell him that the only time it’s acceptable to use the word is when you are gay yourself. ;-) But since he’s an NFL player, there’s about a 90 percent chance he has suffered some brain damage.

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