Kluwe says Vikings reneged on vow to release report about alleged organizational homophobia [UPDATES]
|The Vikings promised an investigation, but Kluwe says the organization won't disclose what it discovered.|
Early this year, Chris Kluwe went nuclear on his former employer in a first-person account of his last season with the team published on Deadspin. In one particularly memorable passage, Kluwe alleges that during a fall 2012 meeting, Vikings special teams coach Mike Priefer said, "We should round up all the gays, send them to an island, and then nuke it until it glows."
Kluwe's piece prompted the Vikings to launch an internal investigation. But now, Kluwe says the organization is reneging on its promise to make the results of the investigation public.
Is Kluwe telling the truth about Coach Mike Priefer's alleged "nuke the gays" comment?
This morning, Kluwe announced that he and his legal team will be holding a news conference in the IDS Center at 11 a.m. today "to discuss possible course of action in light of Vikings' stonewalling."
A press release announcing the news conference says that yesterday, "[T]the Vikings informed Kluwe's attorney that they would not provide a copy of the report to either Kluwe or the public."
The release also provides this background about the situation:
In January 2014, the Vikings hired two highly respected Minnesota legal figures to conduct an independent investigation into Kluwe's allegations that a coach - and the team itself - used homophobic slurs and taunts in an effort to quash his public support for gay marriage rights. Kluwe alleged in a January Deadspin article that he was fired by the Vikings for being an outspoken gay rights advocate - and that a coach, Mike Priefer, had openly and privately made homophobic comments and slurs intended to intimidate Kluwe. The Vikings promised to make a full report of the investigation available to Kluwe and his attorney. Now, more than six months later, the investigators have handed over their report to the Vikings - and the Vikings refuse to give Kluwe a copy of the report.Here's some of the notable Twitter reaction to Kluwe's news conference announcement:
Well, the @ChrisWarcraft news conference at 11 today in Minneapolis appears well-timed. All the national media here for ASG-- RandBall (@RandBall) July 15, 2014
A Vikings spokesman didn't immediately respond to a message seeking comment. We'll update this post if there's anything newsworthy to come out of this morning's newser.
@dbrauer also not uncommon for independent investigative report to be released publicly-- Adam Miller (@ajm6792) July 15, 2014
:::: UPDATE ::::
KSTP, citing an unnamed source "close to the investigation," reports that the Vikings have reconsidered releasing a report about the organization's investigation into Kluwe's claims because it's "damaging and embarrassing."
"The same source says the Vikings have already made changes in their organization and are approaching this very seriously and are taking responsible action to 'correct any homophobic culture that exists within the organization,'" KSTP reports.
:::: UPDATE II ::::
During the news conference, Kluwe and his attorney announced they plan to sue the Vikings for wrongful termination. Here are tweets from the newser:
Kluwe's rep: "We know it's been corroborated that Priefer made the 'nuke the gays' statement." Claiming report damns Priefer, Spielman-- Andrew Krammer (@Andrew_Krammer) July 15, 2014
Kluwe, attorneys filing a lawsuit to make report public, which they claim #Vikings won't do.-- Andrew Krammer (@Andrew_Krammer) July 15, 2014
Kluwe would reconsider lawsuit if Vikings release report. "That's the whole point," Kluwe said-- RandBall (@RandBall) July 15, 2014
Kluwe will sue for religious discrimination, sexual orientation discrimination, defamation and tortuous interference.-- Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) July 15, 2014
Kluwe wearing sport coat over a "punters are people too" t-shirt-- RandBall (@RandBall) July 15, 2014
There were settlement talks, Kluwe's attorney said, in which he would've gotten $1M from #Vikings and donated to LGBT causes.-- Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) July 15, 2014