According to Vikings former punter Chris Kluwe, one of the assistant coaches took an opportunity to express some horrendously homophobic comments, saying, “We should round up all the gays, send them to an island, and then nuke it until it glows.”
Mike Priefer, Vikings special teams coordinator, denies making any such statement. He also denies expressing disgust at the thought of two men kissing. Priefer says he never asked Kluwe if he had written any letters expressing support for gay rights lately. Kluwe is an activist in the cause supporting gay rights.
Priefer issued a statement which read, “I vehemently deny today’s allegations made by Chris Kluwe. I want to be clear that I do not tolerate discrimination of any kind and am respectful to all individuals. I personally have gay family members who I love and support just as I do any family member. The comments today have not only attacked ,y character and insulted my professionalism but they have also impacted my family.”
Kluwe also stated that former Vikings coach Leslie Frazier and team owner Rick Spielman both asked him to stop speaking out on gay rights issues. Frazier and Spielman deny this allegation.
While a few former team members rushed forward to defend Priefer, Kluwe warned that he has witnesses to these events, but at this time is not ready to call them forward and prefers to see how the situation plays out.
The Vikings public relations department released a statement Thursday afternoon saying the organization takes Kluwe’s remarks “very seriously and will thoroughly review this matter. … We do not tolerate discrimination at any level.”
Frazier, who was fired Monday, declined comment in a text message.