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Former NBA Player Makes Insensitive Remark About Down Syndrome

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A former NBA player made an insensitive remark about Down syndrome on Instagram.

Gilbert Arenas, who last played professionally in China for the Shanghai Sharks in 2013, posted a photo on Thursday, in which he made several jokes about trying to get courtside seats to see Kobe Bryant’s last game in Los Angeles. Later in the post he took jabs at players Nick Young and Roy Hibbert, saying they look like they have Down syndrome and asking not to be seated next to them because he didn’t want to catch it.

In the post, Arenas jokingly asked the Lakers to sign him to a 10-day contract so he could have a seat for Bryant’s last game; then he went on to say, “dont (sic) sit me next to Nick or Hibbert, they Down syndrome looks like its (sic) catchable, not paying top dollar to catch what them two [expletives] look like they’ve got.”

Editor’s note: The following post contains NSFW language.

Just tried to get courtside seats to #Kobes Last home game #smdh #SOLDOUT…..But yall know I keeps a backup plan… I look at the end of the lakers bench AND realize what #hibbert #metta @swaggyp1 been doing all season #WatchingKobesLastSeason in those NICE #CourtsideSeats….Buss you gotta let me be down..give ya boy a #10day from (april 3rd-13th) ill pay for the seat…I dont want the seat #metta sits in…that shit so far in the corner,I thought that nigga was security last time he wore all blk #NOTHX…..dont sit me next to #nick or #hibbert they #downsyndrome looks like its catchable,NOT paying top dolla to catch what them two #nighas look like they got #NOTHX hahahaha Just as long as im on the left side of that bighead nigha #sacre NO offence bra I wanna see the #Mamba not a life size #bottlehead version of #Mrclean AND far away from #byronscott as possible…the way he coaches,hes liable put anyone in whos sitting next to him (jack nickelson #batman go get #russell and u guard #cousin’s #playhard) hahahaha ..can somebody let me know who I can contact for My request demands hahahahaha

A photo posted by @gilbertarenasrealrealitytv on

People responded to Arenas’ comment on Twitter: 

We wanted to clear a few things up.

First of all, saying someone has Down syndrome is not an insult. Second, Down syndrome is a genetic condition; you cannot “catch it,” and it is not contagious.

To learn more about people with Down syndrome, you can check out these resources and organizations:

We also recommend a few of these bloggers in our Mighty community:

Image via Wikimedia Commons/Keith Allison

Originally published: February 19, 2016
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