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06/10/2008

'F*ggot' slur? Young actor doesn't Shia way

by Jeremy Hooper

You know what we're no fans of? Getting smacked in the face.

You know what else we're not so fond of? Young, highly visible actors using gay slurs:

Oh, Shia. The only words that should be less prevalent in your vocabulary than slurs like "f*ggot" are the ones that make up the phrase, "Ooh, another "Charlie's Angels" sequel? I'm in!"

Shia LaBeouf - Gets B*tch slapped!!!! [YouTube]
(H/t:Towle)

**UPDATE: Team Shia has released a statement:

The video tape that is currently being circulated is several years old and captures Shia playing a game amongst friends in which he uses a derogatory word towards a friend. He regrets having used the word in any capacity and is very embarrassed that this footage is being seen by anyone.

Does Shia LaBeouf’s Apology Make It All Better? [Queerty]

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Your thoughts

And poof, the video's gone, due to "terms of use violations."

What did he say?

Posted by: Evan | Jun 10, 2008 2:04:38 PM

watch it here at www.theundergroundcity.com

Posted by: theundergroundcity | Jun 10, 2008 4:29:34 PM

Oh, Shia, how could you? And you had just got out of the even stevens shadow and started to act like a grown-up actor. :'(

Oh well, Its not like we don't have better actors who are also LBGT friendly, such as Colin Farrell

Posted by: Corvidae | Jun 11, 2008 2:52:29 AM

it's obvious that deep thinking was not a high priority for this little episode... it's surprising that this is getting so much attention

Posted by: patrick | Jun 18, 2008 3:50:47 PM

Well patrick, I think it's getting lots of attention because the gay community is getting pretty damn tired of the casual acceptance of "the 'f' word". For many of us, there are few words that come across as more offensive. So when we see a visible actor using it in this stupid way that is still so pervasive in society, we say, "WTF?!"

Posted by: G-A-Y | Jun 18, 2008 3:58:47 PM

Anyone who finds this offensive is way too sensitive. I'll tell you a few of the things that I find offensive. Rape, hunger, war, terrorism, genocide, abortion, illegal immigration, death penalty, child soldiers, child prostitution... Faggot is only a word. The original definition of the word is "A bundle of sticks". A person who finds this offensive is a person who should pray for patience. Would you be offended if it was a gay person who said it? I think it's a shame when groups try to control what others say. What if it was someone doing it to you? Shia seems like a smart young man. If the only reference you can find of his being offensive is an obscure video somone made while he was having fun with friends then I think you may be poking around a little too much. He is getting way to much crap for this.

Posted by: trip | Aug 1, 2008 7:22:15 AM

"I'll tell you a few of the things that I find offensive. Rape, hunger, war, terrorism, genocide, abortion, illegal immigration, death penalty, child soldiers, child prostitution... Faggot is only a word."

That's a total straw man argument. It's not "either/or." And it's offensive to suggest that anybody who is troubled with the word "f*ggot" is complacent about any of the the other issues you highlight.

It's also unfair to lump everyone who has any sort of negative reaction to this as "way too sensitive." We hardly lashed out and brandished Shia a homophobe. In fact, we don't at all think that. But we will always speak out against the usage of this word, just as Shia's people have. We can turn incidents like this into teachable moments.

Posted by: G-A-Y | Aug 1, 2008 8:12:01 AM

That's a total straw man argument. It's not "either/or." And it's offensive to suggest that anybody who is troubled with the word "f*ggot" is complacent about any of the the other issues you highlight.

Thanks so much. You proved my point about being too sensitive. I never said peolpe who find that word offensive are complacent about anything. If you were a little less sensitive and not so quick to judge, you may have understood my point. "Faggot" is nothing more than a word. Think about this... How does the word "faggot" make you feel? Now consider this... A word, person, animal, tree, car... can't MAKE you feel any specific way. You allow youself to have those feelings. The word "faggot" can't pat you on the back, it can't spit at you, it can't give you a ride when you car isn't running. It's just a word. And my point about the things that I find offensive is that they are real, visible harmful things.

Posted by: trip | Aug 2, 2008 3:18:27 PM

Trip: How do you figure? Your basic argument was based on the fact that there are certain issues, which you highlighted by name, that are far more offensive, real, visible, and harmful that using words like "f*ggot." My reply is that this is an unfair, straw man argument, as there are varying levels of offense. One can agree with you that some of your highlighted issues may be more severe, yet still have thoughts about what casual acceptance of "f*ggot" can do to weaken us as a people.

And please, show me more respect than coming back with "oh you're too sensitive -- see you just proved it"-type logic. You made a comment and I replied, which is what this forum is all about. My reply to you had nothing to do with oversensitivity, only the reasoned exchange of ideas. Just like we can hold multi-faceted and varied thoughts on all of the subjects you outlined, we can discuss the usage of this particular word without trying to psychoanalyze the other's emotional state. And in fact, acting as if you do have a firm grasp on my sensitivity level would seem to fall in the same "quick to judge" category that you denounced in your above reply.

But back to Shia: He and his team obviously realized the word was inappropriate, which is why they said of the usage, "He regrets having used the word in any capacity and is very embarrassed that this footage is being seen by anyone.” And that was my only real thought upon seeing it -- that he needs to address it. There was no "off with his head"-like call to action at any point. The only discomfort I ever had was with how prevalent this word is in pop culture, and how we need to use teachable moments like this to convey that this word does, in fact, hurt some people. Maybe not you, and if that's the case, consider yourself lucky. But for many LGBT folks, this word has caused pain at some points in their lives.

Posted by: G-A-Y | Aug 2, 2008 4:05:43 PM

Sometime somewhere someone lesbian I think that Shia has been through so much in his life that he would not intentionally want to offend anyone. Remember this was a young kid who got tired of being poor. His heroine addicted father had him smoking pot by the age of ten. He made himself what he is today. He set up his own auditions and got his first roll on his own. I don't even know how old he was, maybe eleven or twelve? Now some people are judging him because one time he used "that" word while fooling around with friends. How old was he? Maybe eighteen or so? Who here has not said something stupid that may offend some person, sometime, somewhere? In that situation I don't think he should be considered "gay unfriendly". I wonder what his Grandmother, who is lesbian, has to say about this.

Posted by: Trip | Aug 5, 2008 10:33:38 PM

Please ignnore first sentence. It is a copy and paste that went wrong. "Heroine" should be "heroin". My post should start at "Remeber". Thanks. Bye.

Posted by: trip | Aug 6, 2008 9:25:07 AM

Some of you comments seem to be narrow minded. If faggot is just a word than by your amazing theory everyoneshould be comfortable slingin around the word nigger, right? I think not. Bigotry is in the mind and our actions. Just becaue speech is protected by the first admendment does not mean that some of the hateful things we say to each other becomes moralely valid.

Posted by: Anyways... | Sep 24, 2008 4:03:08 PM

Anyways: To whom are you directing your comment? Trip?

Posted by: G-A-Y | Sep 24, 2008 4:13:34 PM

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