James Hawley has issued an apology for his recent anti-LGBTQ+ comments.
Earlier this week, the professional boxer responded to a comment asking whether he supports the community on his now-deleted TikTok account.
“I a thousand and million per cent do not agree with this, no,” he said in the video. “Listen, I can understand girls get with each other all the time at parties and things like that. I don’t care. It’s not a problem. I’d want ’em to get with each other in front of me, but boys on the other hand and transgenders… Something seriously wrong with you.
“What on Earth makes you want to change your gender and get f****d in the arse? What is up with you dirty c***s? I feel sorry for your families.”
Hawley’s vile tirade went viral on Twitter after Drag Race UK star Baga Chipz shared it with her followers, calling him “homophobic filth” and an “absolute piece of dirt”. Points were made.
Following widespread backlash on social media, MTK Global – “the world’s foremost boxer management company” – dropped him as a client.
“The management team have made the decision to terminate Mr Hawley’s contract with MTK Global with immediate effect and will no longer be representing him in any format,” they wrote in a statement.
“The boxing community is about respect and unity and MTK Global prides itself on its community focus and inclusive ethos. It has always been our mission to make boxing accessible to all, embracing individuality and being a safe space where community can express themselves and support one another.
“MTK Global does not in any way condone, or support the views that were shared in any way, nor will these comments ever be considered as acceptable from any of our fighters hence the decision that was made by management.
“We look forward to continuing to connect and embrace the expanding boxing community and always endeavor to lead by example. We appreciate your support in helping us work towards this.”
(Offensive video) Today’s Scum is no other than “pro boxer” and really hard man James Hawley. Homophobic Filth. What a hard man. Report the Low life. What an absolute piece of dirt. pic.twitter.com/W7hdWwbDE0
— Baga Chipz (@ChipShopBird) July 22, 2020
Hawley responded to his dismissal on Instagram, saying he “understands and empathises” with their decision.
He then attempted to justify his actions by claiming: “Last night, I hit a brick wall. I had enough of all the messages and the disgusting disturbing images that I was being sent by members of the gay community. I lashed out and said a few things that I didn’t mean.”
The 21-year-old also the classic “I have friends who are gay and I have a cousin who is gay” excuse to convince his followers that he’s not homophobic.
“I never meant anything by it and I’m sorry for who I offended,” he continued. “At the same time, how would you like it if members from the gay public, on a day-to-day basis, was sending you inappropriate videos and messages, basically abusing you? If this happened to a girl, it would be a completely different situation.”
Hawley concluded his video by asking MTK Global to meet him in private so can he share his “side of the story” and show them “evidence” that it was an “attack out of anger, not what I believe”.
Unsurprisingly, his “apology” video was not well-received.
Yesterday professional boxer #JamesHawley responded to a question “do you support the LGBT community” instead of either ignoring the question or just saying yes he went on a viral tirade. This is his “apology” video after being let go from his management pic.twitter.com/0wkb9LXskc
— Jolene Dover (@jolenedover) July 22, 2020