Hockey Night in Canada host Ron MacLean has apologized for a remark he made during Tuesday night's Montreal Canadiens versus Toronto Maple Leafs broadcast that many on social media had called homophobic.
Viewers and fans earlier took to Twitter after MacLean, responding to a comment from fellow pundit Kevin Bieksa, said, "you have a photo of a guy with his tarp off, you're definitely positive for something."
https://t.co/uXYt311Cdm— Ron MacLean (@Ron MacLean) 1622055321.0
"I regret and apologize for what happened last night," MacLean wrote on Twitter.
He also explained the context behind the comment and his intentions. "We had a fun moment featuring a photograph of our colleague Anthony Stewart enjoying a rum party. That photo [...] sat on the shelf of Kevin Bieksa's set for the remainder of the night."
"When Kevin quipped that he was 'the most positive person on our panel,' I directed viewers to that photo, using 'tarp off' (i.e. shirtless) to specify the picture with the rum bottle," he wrote.
"The idea of language of intention, of personal responsibility, I have seen those concepts used as broad exoneration," MacLean continued.
"It's not enough. We have a contract with you the viewer, that in us you see yourself."
"I've reached out to several guiding lights in the equity seeking arena, my allies in the LGBTQ2S+ community and to my co-workers to receive their wisdom and continue our joint effort to tend to the hearts of us all."
"I appreciate the power of the voices who spoke to me last night and this morning."