It’s been less than a month since former WWE Hall of Famer Hulk Hogan gave Gawker a historic legal leg drop. He’s done his victory lap on those daily talk shows he first used to apologize to America for his appalling behavior, and is no doubt biding his time until he gets a redemptive video package welcoming him back to WWE after his “bad day.”
Now, a new audio excerpt containing part of Hogan’s damning racist rant has surfaced. Please note, like anything labelled ‘racist rant,’ it’s obviously super-NSFW:
Though some of the tape has been redacted, the racial epithets are clear — especially in statements like, “If we’re gonna f*ck with n*ggers, let’s get a rich one!”
When news first came out that Hogan’s now infamous sex tape contained bigoted pillow talk, the punishment from WWE was swift. He was fired, removed from their Hall of Fame, and scrubbed from their YouTube channel. But, like all things, time has a way of softening harsh reality. His former coworkers — including the sorely missed Roddy Piper — carefully tried to point out that while he said racist things, he’s certainly not racist. Steve Austin noted that while it can’t be forgotten, the whole thing can certainly be forgiven.
For some, it’s much easier to be forgiving if it’s just words on a screen, and any negative reactions can be ignored by attributing them to “outrage culture.” Believe me, there are more than enough ignorant and outright racist comments in our spam folder to prove it. It’s much harder, however, to win back public favor when confronted with actual audio or video of the act. It’ll be interesting to see how or even if this affects Hogan now that his lawsuit is over.