Minnesota Timberwolves star Anthony Edwards made headlines for all the wrong reasons of late after he came out with some very offensive slurs against the LGBTQ+ community. The 21-year-old received a ton of backlash for his insensitive comments, which prompted an apology from Edwards himself.
If you ask Los Angeles Lakers icon Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, however, the Hall of Fame big man strongly believes that an apology is not enough for Edwards. Kareem feels that the Timberwolves star must do much more to rectify his mistake (via Abdul-Jabbar’s substack):
“It would be easy to dismiss Edwards’ immaturity—he’s only 21—if not for the fact that we’ve seen so many cases of famous athletes and owners in the news spouting racism, misogyny, and anti-LGBTQ+ sentiments. This damages sports in general and their teams specifically, and revives the old stereotype of the dumb, bullying jock,” Abdul-Jabbar wrote.
“But more important, it perpetuates prejudice against a group and that prejudice often leads to restricting rights and to violence. I don’t think an apology—however heartfelt—is enough. Edwards needs to repair the damage with some voluntary community service with LGBTQ+ organizations, particularly youth groups, to show his support. If he can’t do that much to undo the harm he’s caused, then his apology is meaningless.”
It seems that Anthony Edwards has indeed learned a valuable lesson here. However, as Kareem said, in order for him to really prove his regret and as a way to acquaint himself with the community that he offended, he must let his actions speak louder than his words. At this point, Abdul-Jabbar clearly feels that saying sorry just doesn’t cut it.
While this is an undeniably ugly incident for Edwards, the fact of the matter is that there’s still a silver lining here. He could emerge from this saga as a renewed man with a much more respectable perspective on the LGBTQ+ community. It’s just a matter of how he handles all this.