Thursday, July 30, 2015

Losing Hulk Hogan

I've never been one to shy away from difficult subject matter, so I feel I need to comment on this. Anyone who knows me knows I'm not only a huge pro wrestling fan, but also a lifelong fan of Hulk Hogan. The Hulk Hogan character was for myself, and for many kids growing up in single parent households in the 80's, very much a father figure to us all. That character gave us all something to believe in, something more to aspire to. Over the years, the man behind the character, Terry Bollea, has shown that he is a flawed human being, as we all are to a degree. Steroid use, issues with his family, the inconsistencies in his recollection of past events, and probably the most embarrassing being the sex tape. The same tape that apparently includes the racial comments leaked to the press recently that has caused WWE to completely distance themselves from Hulk Hogan. This whole situation is just sad. Hulk has meant so much to me and so many others. Being a Hulkamaniac transcends race or religion. Which is exactly why the racial comments made on that tape are so incredibly disappointing. I've met Hulk on three different occasions, the last time being with my girlfriends 12 year-old son Logan. He has always been incredibly kind to me, and he went out of his way to talk with Logan on a few occasions when we met him at the Arnold Expo earlier this year. Which meant a lot to me and my family. With all that being said, I can in no way condone the comments made on that tape. I grew up in an older household where occasional racial slurs were used. But I didn't end up adopting those same beliefs and behaviors. I am a more private person, without a huge amount of friends. Two of my absolute closest friends are African American. Because I truly don't give a damn what color their skin is, I care about the genuine human beings they really are. Everyone makes mistakes, says or does things they regret in their lives, and I'm no different. I can only hope that those disgusting comments made on that tape are not an indication of who Terry Bollea truly is. I will hope that time will heal wounds, and that the wonderful memories so many of us have had of Hulk Hogan won't be forever erased, replaced with thoughts of bigotry & racial ignorance. We are all connected, regardless of race, creed , color or religion. I can only hope that love for thy fellow man & woman will prevail in the end. I will forever be a fan of pro wrestling. And I will continue to hold out hope that Terry Bollea aka Hulk Hogan will find a way to truly redeem himself. So myself and so many others can be proud, and not absolutely ashamed, to once gain call themselves a Hulkamaniac.