We have no idea how Portland Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq Aminu views gay people today. But tweets of his from 2009 to 2011 that have just surfaced showed him to be homophobic back then.
These tweets were posted along with others by NBA players on Imgur by user JewishDoggy under the heading "Here's another collection of old tweets from NBA players." Aminu's tweets got the attention of the Blazers Edge website (owned by SB Nation, which also owns Outsports).
The tweets shown above were still live when Blazers Edge posted them but have since been removed, which means either Aminu or the Blazers realized how bad they were. "They were 16 to 17 (total)," Blazers Edge editor Dave Deckard said. "We only quoted the most egregious. I'm glad they've at least removed them."
Aminu, 25, wrote the homophobic tweets when he was 19 to 21, with the last posted Nov. 9, 2011, almost five years ago. He has not posted anything of the kind since, so it's possible he now sees gay people differently. He does play in Portland, about as LGBT-friendly as any place in the country.
Aminu is the second pro athlete to delete old homophobic tweets this week. On Saturday, Philadelphia Eagles draft choice Wendell Smallwood apologized after a 2011 anti-gay tweet was unearthed.
Aminu's tweets aren't the worst we've seen, but they do show a negative view of gay people and he was clearly obsessed with the issue at the time. The Trail Blazers are still alive in the NBA Playoffs — they trail Golden State 2-0 in their best-of-seven series — but he needs to come clean at some point about whether he still believes such things. Deleting them shows he knows they are not acceptable.