Bias Watch

Fox host applauds UFC fighter’s wildly homophobic rant about rejecting gay kids

Jesse Watters ranting about Sean Strickland

Fox host Jesse Watters praised UFC fighter Sean Strickland for going on a hateful rant in a press conference.

A reporter in Toronto asked Strickland about anti-gay comments he made in 2021 when he said, “If I had a gay son I would think I failed as a man to create such weakness.”

A reporter asked Strickland about his comments, but Strickland wouldn’t even let the reporter get through his question without continuing his rant.

“Oh look, another, he’s a swamp, you guys, a swamp!” Strickland said. He then asked the reporter what he would do if his own son came out.

“No problem with it,” the reporter said.

“You’re a weak f**king man, dude,” Strickland replied. “You’re, like, you’re part of the f**king problem.” You elected [Canadian Prime Minister] Justin Trudeau. [inaudible] You’re just pathetic.”

“Here’s the thing about Bud Light: Ten years ago, to be trans was a mental f**king illness and now, all of a sudden, people like you have f**king weaseled your way in the world,” Strickland said after the reporter asked him about UFC’s partnership with Bud Light. In April 2023, Bud Light sponsored a 50-second Instagram video that featured transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney, and many conservatives are still very angry about this.

“You are an infection,” Strickland said. “You are the definition of weakness. Everything that is wrong with the world is because of f**king you.”

Watters played the clip that he introduced as a question about “transgenders,” even though the first question had nothing to do with transgender people. As Watters ranted about how “sports media” is too concerned with social justice issues, a chyron that read, “UFC STAR RIPS REPORTER OVER GOTCHA QUESTION” showed on screen.

“Now, Sean’s a fighter without a filter, and that drives the media crazy,” Watters said, apparently elated at Strickland’s hateful rant. “Because if you don’t respect the speech police, you don’t respect them at all. And that’s all these sniveling pretend journalists care about, the status they hold. Their job becomes useless because the only power they have over us is the power we give them.”

Watters then had fellow Fox host Pete Hegseth on to talk about “free speech,” even though the interaction between Strickland and the reporter didn’t involve any free speech questions.

“The UFC in Canada is a whole ‘nother,” Hegseth said. “They don’t have the same First Amendment protections. They’re happy to censor speech. Everything is politically correct. And then the UFC shows up, which is basically like permanent locker-room talk.”

“Why do these sports journalists ask about transgender rights?” Watters asked.

“Because it’s gotcha. It’s gotcha. They want clickbait,” Hegseth responded, as he and Watters used that clip in Fox’s primetime slot to draw in viewers.

“And so they want to find a wedge to get at these athletes who are smarter than them and faster than them and bigger than them and have hotter girlfriends than they do. And so they’re angry about it, so they try to ask gotcha questions. And throw them under the bus.”

Strickland lost his fight with Dricus du Plessis.

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