Word from Tim Hardaway is that he has made some changes to his slate of personal beliefs and tolerance levels.
In a recent post at AOL's FanHouse, Brett Edwards transcribes the former pro baller's remarks this week on Dan Le Batard's radio show, a year after he made some rather insensitive comments on the very same show about the sexual preferences of other groups in this country:
I have found out through counseling...going through counseling and understanding what I said was totally wrong, and I gave people...permission to go out and hurt gay people, you know, beat 'em up, kick out your son and daughter out of the house and not treat 'em as people.
They are people. We should treat them as people. They are citizens of the United States. I just want everybody to know I did a bad thing, and now I understand what I did, and I corrected it, and I went to counseling to understand why I did that, and understand that I'm a better person now from that.
Label me impressed.
No matter one's feelings on any sort of group of people, Tim Hardaway made a horrendous mistake when he made the comments he did last year regarding his hatred for those with different preferences than his own. He made bigoted remarks and, simply put, he made himself look like a fool. For my part, I'll always look at him slightly differently for that, and no amount of lip service is likely to change that.
But whether or not Hardaway's latest words are indeed just lip service remains to be seen. What doesn't remain to be the seen is that it still takes a lot for a proud man to be willing to step up in public and admit that he was wrong. Patently and atrociously wrong.
This new set of words doesn't take back Tim Hardaway's words the first time around, and it doesn't undo the damage that has already been done. But given that this isn't the first time Hardaway has given this refrain in light of what happened last year, and given the fact that he continue to sounds at least somewhat sincere in his words, these new comments help to bring back at least the smallest iota of respect I once had for the man. Because it always takes something to make such a public admission of foolishness.