Straight Up with Sherri

Thursday, June 02, 2005


49ers owners apologize for offensive training tape

While pundits from coast to coast dished about a San Francisco 49ers training video featuring lesbian porn and racist humor, the team owners issued an apology this afternoon and the players tried to focus on the business of playing football.

The video, put together by the team's former public relations manager as a primer for how players should deal with the media, is "offensive in every manner," team owners Denise and John York said in a statement.

"We deeply regret that anyone from our organization would produce such senseless, inexcusable material," the statement said. "Policies are being put into place to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again."

After today's practice session at the team's facility in Santa Clara, some members of the 49ers offered their own takes on the video.

"This is not what this organization is about," said coach Mike Nolan, who wasn't with the 49ers when the tape was shown to players last summer.

Nolan said he hadn't viewed the tape, but that judging by a written summary, it was "tasteless." Quarterback Ken Dorsey referred to the tape as a "third rail."

Defensive end Andre Carter defended public relations manager Kirk Reynolds, who is no longer with the team.

"He's been awesome with on-the-field issues and off-the-field issues," Carter said. "There was no harm done; it was basically just for us as players. I'm sure when the tape went out, it offended some people. But that was not that person's intention."

Safety Tony Parrish likened the bawdy content of the video to that featured on "Chappelle's Show" of cable TV.

"Is the video insensitive? Yes," Parrish said. "But what type of video is it? It's a public relations video. How a not-to type video. ... Knowing the context in which it was done, I don't think it was as bad as everyone is making."

Linebacker Julian Peterson, who appears in the video as a panhandler, voiced a similar view.

"It wasn't meant to harm anybody or be any kind of negative message at all," he said. "It was supposed to be an in-house thing. I know Kirk personally. I know he has not addressed anybody with racial slurs. ... I'm just so upset this got out the way it did."

Greg Aiello, spokesman for the National Football League, said he was not aware of any other team-produced videos on media relations.

"The standard approach is to use our video and supplement it with comments by the PR directors, head coach, etc.," he said.

FOR THE LOVE OF PETE! IT IS A FOOTBALL LOCKER ROOM! I certainly feel the tape is STUPID! I wouldn't choose to watch such a video. I find the video OFFENSIVE, but SO WHAT! At LEAST they didn't try to release the video to the public and call it a DOCUMENTARY! SHEESHK! I wonder- if they had shot video portraying President Bush as an ape or a gay lover- would they have called it ART instead of claiming outrage!?!?!


  • It is about time you had a good opinion Sherry

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:02 PM  

  • I watched it. It was about average football lockerroom humor -- not that funny, but enjoyable in the company of forty adolescent guys. How did it get out to the world?

    By Blogger levi from queens, at 9:13 PM  

  • levi

    From what I understand- some folks were offended by the film (it was shown last August) and went to the owners, etc. They finally got frustrated because nothing was being done about it- so then they released it to the press and to the Mayor- LOL!- The Mayor was very UNIMPRESSED- to say the least.

    (Something) Chronicle was the paper it was released to- I THINK.

    By Blogger Straight Up with Sherri, at 9:55 PM  

  • Sherry --

    What a lot of effort for so little.

    I am grateful that every stupid joke I have ever told in a locker room has not been attributed to me.

    By Blogger levi from queens, at 10:05 PM  

  • levi


    I think it is hysterical that people are all upset over such a stupid video. It's just a cheesy locker room video- not like it is being featured as a showpiece for some museum or a hall of fame.

    By Blogger Straight Up with Sherri, at 10:15 PM  

  • I agree with levi. It's just a tape and probably was meant to be a tool for "breaking the ice" sort of. I think the public tends to over dramatize certain subjects just for shock value. What harm does the tape do to the mass public? Will we all start to believe and act the same way towards lesbians and all others that were portrayed in the tape? I think not

    Anonymous 5775 EK

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:34 AM  

  • CT 1824

    This is so stupid. It is a man's locker room, in a sport where men get together drink beer, and watch the pretty cheerleaders bounce up and down. If you want to get this picky...not much about football is "politically correct." But it is what it is and we love it. What they do their locker rooms on their time is up to them. It is not harming anybody. Why were people offended, when they were not forced to watch it?? It was a private movie, intended for the players only.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:03 AM  

  • I haven't seen the video, but I heard about it. Although it is male locker room humor, people shouldn't put others down just to boost their own low esteem. Maybe I should get together with some of my close friends and put together a "spoof" on how lots of these football players are gay and "on the down low" with their fellow teammates. Oh, and what if our spoof accidentally got out to the media and their wives found out? Would that be acceptable?


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:44 PM  

  • Good grief. These are men. FOOTBALL PLAYERS fer cryin out loud.

    This sounds like just the sort of thing the Chronicle would love. Classic culture clash between one of America's best football teams and its hometown, which just happens to be ... San Francisco.

    Guess the press needed a break after all those urgent stories on the Koran.

    By Blogger Asher Abrams, at 12:18 AM  

  • Computer problems again Eevil?

    By Blogger levi from queens, at 12:24 PM  

  • The crap on Comedy Central is a lot filthier and more offensive than this video. Only in California could this be happening. No wonder the 49ers can't win a game. ;-P

    By Anonymous Lady Redhawk, at 12:40 PM  

  • CT 1824

    tj1625..I agree that it was offensive..but if you wanted to make a tape about the football players...go ahead. It's you and your friends private time. We just can't start controlling what people watch on their private time. The tape wasn't meant for the public. Somebody got a hold of it and decided to make it a story.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:46 PM  

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