The Cowboys owner apologized for using an offensive term during his training camp-opening press conference. But what did Jerry Jones say?
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones held his training camp-opening press conference this week ahead of the upcoming NFL season.
During the press conference, Jones paid tribute to a number of people dear to him who had recently passed. One of which was former team executive and close friend Larry Lacewell.
Lacewell was also the director of scouting and worked for the Cowboys from 1991-2004. He died in May aged 85.
However, during the press conference, the Cowboys owner used an ‘offensive’ term. What did Jerry Jones say?
What did Jerry Jones say?
Speaking about attending a service for Lacewell in Arkansas with his son Stephen, Jerry said:
“A lot of our staff, certainly our scouts — Jonesboro, Arkansas when they gave a big memorial to Lace,” Jones said. “Lace held court out here. I’m gonna get me somebody — a m***** — to stand up there with me and dress him up like Lace and think Lace is still out here helping us.
“You know, we all need our props and the memory that goes with it. But here is to Lace. Really, and I’m serious about that.”
Jones apologizes for ‘offensive’ term
However, shortly after Jones found himself in hot water for using the ‘M-word’, a derogatory and offensive word for a person with dwarfism.
Jones issued an apology for any offense caused. “Earlier today I made a reference which I understand may have been viewed as offensive,” Jones said after saying “the M-word” in reference to Lacewell’s height. “I apologize.”
Advocacy group Little People of America have labelled the term a “derogatory slur”
In 2015, Little People of America, the world’s oldest and largest dwarfism support organization, advocated abolishing the use of the ‘M-word.’
The word “m*****” is used as a derogatory slur to refer to people of short stature,” a statement reads. “Whether or not the intention of using the word is to bully and to demean, or just as a synonym for small, the term has been deemed a slur by those within the community and should be eliminated accordingly.
“In a recent organizational statement, LPA put forward a call to action to abolish the word from the everyday nomenclature and to replace it with synonymous designations when necessary.”
Little People of Ontario have also advocated for the word to be abolished:
“The “M” word is a demeaning slur for a person who has dwarfism,” their website reads. “The “M” word originates from the oppression and exploitation of people with dwarfism in “freak shows” of the mid-1800s.”
“If necessary, we use “person with dwarfism,” or “Little Person” (LP) or “person of short stature” but most people would rather be referred to by their name rather than by a label.”