All Black fullback Israel Dagg has called another rugby player a "fag" on twitter. "Hahaha you fag," he wrote to Blues player Brendon O'Connor this morning. Dagg has since removed the tweet and written "Wrong choice of word people don't let it ruin ya Sunday, keep smiling." It comes as homophobia in rugby is in the spotlight, because queer rugby fan Hannah Spyksma spoke out about the homophobic abuse she suffered through during last weekend's All Blacks game in Auckland. Some people have quickly reacted with disappointment, such as comedian and actor Eli Matthewson who tweets "Israel Dagg has ruined my Sunday" and 'Olz' has tweeted: " dude u are a professional and a role model for thousands, I don't think that's a sensible term to use". Sara Fraser adds on GayNZ's Facebook page: "And we wonder why we have no out rugby players! I don't accept his retraction either, his use of the word in the first instance shows his comfort with such language; his later realisation he would be pilloried for using it only shows his desire to shut people up before commenting." Others think the situation is funny, deciding to throw in a few homophobic jibes of their own, such as 'Sir William Brodama' who tweets "@izzy_dagg HAHA YOUR LAST NAME RHYMES WITH FAG!" and Paddy Lewis has responded to the story with "fuck off you poofs". Another Twitter user, Matthew Robertson, says "Israel Dagg has to say sorry for saying the word fag, what a faggot world it is. #hardenupfags" Disgraced former All Black Zac Guilford has even weighed in, tweeting "Your [sic] a bad boy @izzy_dagg" to which Dagg has replied "Me n u mate!!!" Lesbian Labour MP and former Black Fern Louisa Wall is disappointed with Dagg's use of the derogatory word. She's told Fairfax as Kiwi role models All Black players have a responsibility to not use language that marginalises groups of society. "They fail to recognise the responsibility they have as leaders in New Zealand society, and the influence they have on a whole generation not only of young people, but they represent all New Zealanders now," she said. Wall wants to work with the New Zealand Rugby Union to help players understand the importance and influence of the way they behave.
Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News staff
First published: Sunday, 16th June 2013 - 2:17pm
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