Mat Matters: Briscoe's comments sickening, unacceptable
MATT BISHOP - SLAM! Wrestling
|Jay Briscoe heads to the ring for the ROH Border Wars iPPV. Photo by Mike Mastrandrea
Going to college was a very enlightening experience for me. Not that I was locked up and kept away from things the average teenage would be, but there's only so many different types of people you can meet.
When I enrolled at Michigan State University, I went to a school that had a student population four times bigger than the city I came from. I met a lot of those 48,000 students during my extended stay, and I rather quickly learned how big of an idiot I was.
When you work in journalism, you really do meet people from all walks of life. The first day I stepped into the newsroom at my college newspaper, I was met with more diversity than I'd ever seen before in my life.
And it was rather quickly that I learned there are certain words you no longer use. For me, those words were gay and faggot. In high school, those words were a regular part of the vernacular. In my case, they were out of malice. I used them out of ignorance. But within the first few days of college, I realized this was a whole new world. Those words hurt.
That's why I'm so disappointed when closed-minded people creep into the sport I love.
Wednesday morning, Ring of Honor World Champion Jay Briscoe, for seemingly no reason, went to Twitter and unleashed this:
I don't follow Briscoe on Twitter, but was alerted to this tweets by a posting by our own Nolan Howell. The posts have since been deleted, and the account, @jaybriscoe84 appears to be inactive.
I shake my head when I read people come out in public with things like this. If you want to have those thoughts privately, whatever. Knock yourself out. But what purpose does it serve to threaten to kill people who might not agree with you? That's what I don't get. What drove him to this point?
In May 2011, I attended an ROH show in Dearborn, Mich., and had a great time. Except one problem. These same Briscoe brothers yelling at the All Night Express and calling them faggots. Not to mention most of the crowd laughing and doing the same thing.
So, having that in my memory, that makes this statement even worse.
I can be almost certain that Briscoe doesn't know a gay person. Because if he did, I'm almost positive he wouldn't be saying anything like this. Having seen the issues my gay friends have gone through has opened my eyes. Walking down the street in my college town and hearing someone who was driving by yell "FAGGOT!" out the window at him is something I'll never forget.
It's devastating to them that they can't legally get married in many states, and that's why it disappoints me so much when someone I liked says something like this. Yes, you may be a Christian, but you were a human first. Have some compassion for your fellow humans and spare us the tired routine.
As someone who has really started to get into ROH during the past few years, it's extremely disheartening for me to know that this is who they have representing their organization as world champion.
If a WWE wrestler made these statements, it would probably be pretty close to the end for them. Luckily for Briscoe, ROH is so far under the radar that he'll likely skate on these statements.
I know I'm probably more open-minded than most these days, but reading things like what Briscoe spewed makes me ill because I know there's millions of people who feel the same way.
Those people, though, aren't the champion of a wrestling organization. There must be repercussions of some kind for Briscoe's comments. At the very least, he should be pelted with a large lesson in common sense, because what he said should not be accepted on any level.
If ROH doesn't take some sort of action, I'm going to have to seriously evaluate my feeling on the organization because letting something like this slide by is unacceptable.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Ring of Honor sent out the following statement on Thursday: "Ring of Honor Wrestling respects and appreciates every fan regardless of age, gender, race, religion or sexual preference. The recent post by Jay Briscoe does not represent the views or opinions of Ring of Honor Wrestling, its owners, management or employees."
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Matt Bishop can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name and hometown. Click here to follow Matt on Twitter. Should be a good one!.