Dana White, president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, both apologized (again) for his past homophobic comments while encouraging gay fighters to come out.
"I'll tell you right now, if there was a gay fighter in UFC, I wish he would come out," he said. "I could care less if there's a gay fighter in the UFC. There probably is and there's probably more than one."
White is under fire from the Culinary Workers Union Local 226 in Las Vegas, which wants sponsors -- including Fox TV -- to stop supporting the UFC. The union on its website Unfit For Children listed several instance of homophobic or sexist remarks by White or those affiliated with the UFC.
"If you guys look at all the stuff that I've said over the last 10 years -- some of it stupid, some of it whatever -- that's the one that bothers me," White said. "That's the only one that bothers me -- the fact that these losers from the Culinary Union can go out and say that I'm a homophobe and things like that -- because it's the furthest thing from the truth." ...
"You're dealing with human beings. Everybody makes mistakes and everybody does things that are wrong sometimes. ... We do the best we can do. How do you really think that we could possibly police 375 fighters and try to control everything they say?"
White is a guy all over the map on gay issues. He has used homophobic language, then issued what Cyd called a "hollow apology." He also has not punished UFC people who have used homophobic slurs. At the same time, he has said the UFC would embrace a gay fighter.
The union, which has separate reasons involving organizing workers for its pressure on the UFC, is nonetheless holding White accountable. Somebody has to. White has tremendous power to discipline fighters who make homophobic remarks and simply crying that you're not a homophobe doesn't go far enough.