A little while back, I wrote about rumors were swirling around about how 80’s Wrestling star Hulk Hogan was making the rounds that he was apologizing for his racist rant about black people dating his daughter and it’s release to the public. The WWE cut all ties with him and took him out of their Hall of Fame for that.
The WWE recently “reinstated” him to their Hall of Fame and Hulk himself appeared backstage at the recent Extreme Rules event where he made some sort of “apology” to the wrestlers on the roster for what he did.
This news, of course, set off the usual talk from fans wanting a Hogan return. Nevermind the reality of time not being on his side, but people are dreaming up about the Return of Hulkamania and all the cool things he will be able to do.
This isn’t the 1980s and this is only going so far.
Looking at it, set aside the racist ranting he did, just for a bit. Hulk Hogan is in his 60s. He has had back surgery and had one of his hips replaced There isn’t going to be any more big matches from him. Granted a lot of his work from back in the day wasn’t admired for his ring work, but things have not gotten any better. A lot of the more modern fans were cringing at a lot of his older work anyway. Why do people boo guys like John Cena and Roman Reigns nowadays are the things Hulk Hogan did. It wasn’t about ability or ringwork with his matches. That was what the other company was doing at the time.
A big point is also how sincere this really is. This wasn’t just a mistake or slip of the tongue or something that was taken the wrong way that he is apologizing for. This was a long-winded rant about the black people that dated his daughter. There was no ulterior motive or he wasn’t trying to get across a different message. And the idea that he didn’t even know he was being filmed at the time doesn’t help matters, no matter why he was being filmed in the first place.
In a more modern time, it doesn’t seem on the level either. His name was used to try and sell what most are calling a terrible event. He spoke backstage, but in front of WWE Cameras for a WWE Network special. Whether he was paid to do this or not hasn’t been said, but he is getting WWE Attention again and the company is making sure to cash in on their one time biggest star. Takes the meaning out of the honesty of an apology is it’s being done for a Network Special.
And as a long time wrestling fan, I can tell you as I did the last time, Hogan is a showman first. This is hardly the first time he and the WWE parted ways. He survived it all over the years, Being kicked out of the Hall of Fame wasn’t the worst thing to have happened to him. He is probably just happy people are talking about him at all.
Then come the wrestlers themselves. The guys who are actually working in the company who are People of Color that Hogan’s comments directly affected and those he probably felt he was apologizing to, the Titus O’Neil’s, the Kofi Kingston’s, the Xavier Woods’. The guys who do so much.
A statement was released by Kofi Kingston and The New Day that I think said a lot more than Hogan did of the situation. They aren’t going to forget, but they aren’t going to hate him back for it either. They respect him for the road he laid down before them, but him being back in the Hall of Fame won’t change anything for them on the roster. They, like everyone else, aren’t going to change what they do because of it.
That may be the statement to make in all of this. Not what Hogan has said.