In his latest Heated Conversations podcast, Booker T addressed the incident on last week's episode of WWE Monday Night RAW when Lamelo Ball used the n-word in the Miz TV segment and how WWE followed up the very next night on SmackDown with The New Day alluding to his promo in WCW where he used the n-word during a promo on Hulk Hogan.
Booker then explained his perspective on the n-word and referenced something that former WWE star Sean "X-Pac" Waltman tweeted about the segment.
"I agree with you [Kia Stevens] when you say certain people just don't understand and don't know, just like, you know, Sean Waltman, X-Pac, he's a friend of mine, but he said on Twitter that, you know, it was 'No big deal.' You know what I mean? He don't think it's a big deal," said Booker T. "But like you say, he haven't walked around for 52 years like myself being black and being in my skin. You know what I mean? Then you say on one hand, just say for instance it's a white person and he used it as a term of endearment then the next minute he's not using it as a term of endearment. Then we have a problem."
Booker, a WWE Hall of Famer, then stated he believes the word should be eradicated.
"It's such a catch-22 situation because I hear on certain radio stations, you know, they have to bleep it out every two seconds on the radio," said Booker. "You know and we as a people if we can't stop saying it, who are we to say when and where someone can say it? Me personally I think the word should be eradicated."
The segment featuring the Ball family was overshadowed in the mainstream by LaMelo dropping the n-word when Dean Ambrose came out, which prompted a surprised look from his brother, to which LaMelo said it again, yelling, "Beat that n---a a--!"
"It was said on live television, everybody got a chance to hear it," said Booker. "You know, we as a people, we gotta know how to change our levels. We gotta know when to speak this way and when to speak that way. It is cultural, it is something we grew up with, it is something that we have seen throughout our lives being black. It's no secret or anything like that. So let's not sugar coat it or anything like that."
Later in the episode, they played the segment from last week's WWE SmackDown Live (embedded in the video above) when The New Day came out after The Usos beat The Hype Bros. After the match, Big E got on the mic and shouted, "At Battleground, we comin' for you.." before he was interrupted by Xavier Woods, who shouted "Usos," clearly drawing from Booker T's infamous blunder in WCW. It was the first time Booker had heard the segment, despite hearing all about it after it aired live on the USA Network.
"The thing is before you play it, I want everyone out there to know, I have not heard it, I haven't seen it," said Booker. "I know all about it but I refuse to look at it. I refuse to listen to it. This is the first time I have listened to it."
"I just want to make it publicly known that I don't condone that at all; especially after coming off Monday night," said Booker T. "We as a people have to know when it's time to, you know time to speak up and when it's time to shut up, my mother taught me that a long time ago. You know, and if you don't know it'll come back to haunt you. Me saying that, it's haunted me for this many years still. You know what I mean? You put yourself in a situation for something to happen just like Mike Tyson did. I say that all the time. Something can happen."
"I know I've made mistakes," continued Booker T. "That word I said on national television in front of the world, I wish, I wish I could go back and erase it. I wish I could take it back and I wish WWE would never do something like that ever again and let something like that happen."
Booker explained he doesn't appreciate WWE referencing the most embarrassing moment of his career on their television, although he understands The New Day writes a lot of their own material and there's a chance WWE didn't know about it beforehand.
"I mean, me personally, like I said, I don't appreciate it," said Booker. "I don't know if they knew the parody was going to go down because I know those guys do a lot of their own stuff. But I just don't think that you know, we as a company, need to go that route. I think, you know, that parody should not have ever been shown on television. Because it wasn't a great moment for us as black people. For us as black people, it was one of our worst moments."
"Just like the LaVar Ball thing, kid's 15-years-old, I don't blame him or anything like that. It was something that slipped out. Just like for myself, it was something that slipped out," said Booker. "But for me as a person that's trying to set an example for us as black people and for me to let so many people down. Even for those people who thought it was so cool and for those that thought it was an anthem, you know, and Booker T, you know, just put us on the map. You know what I mean? Even though I want them to know that was my worst day that I could have ever had being a black man and in letting so many of our people down by calling us that word or saying that word in any realm, in any form was definitely not right by any means."
"I wish I could take it back," continued Booker. "That one blemish is the only thing they have over my head that they could put out there to try and make me look bad in any shape, form or fashion."
Booker T's latest Heated Conversations podcast featuring Kia "Awesome Kong" Stevens, f/k/a Kharma, is available in its entirety by clicking here.
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Heated Conversations with a H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Got a news tip or correction? Send it to us by clicking here.