When it comes to the all-too-familiar genre of ethnic slur apologies, “I didn’t know what the word meant at the time” is certainly a new one.
Of course, that was the excuse the Miami Heat’s Meyers Leonard used Tuesday in his “apology” for loudly using an anti-Semitic slur during a Twitch stream on Monday.
Leonard, now suspended indefinitely by the team, may not have explicitly known the detailed history of the word (heck, most Jews probably don’t), but he definitely knew what it meant.
Watching video of the incident, what’s most striking is Leonard seeming to pause beforehand to come up with something derogatory to say. It didn’t take him long to choose that particular slur, a deep cut and not something that you hear regularly (or ever) in the 21st century.