Jerry Jones: Dallas Cowboys owner apologizes for using derogatory term for little people

Speaking at a press conference Tuesday at the team’s training camp, Jones paid tribute to former players and staff who have recently passed away.

In particular, Jones spoke about Larry Lacewell, the team’s former director of scouting, who worked with the Cowboys from 1992 to 2004, winning three Super Bowl rings before he died at age 85 in May.

Jones said: “Many of our staff, especially our scouts – Jonesboro, Arkansas, when they put up a big monument to Leys. Leys held court here. ‘ Standing there with me and dressing him up like Leys and thinking that Leys is still here helps us.”

In response, the Little People of America (LPA), the world’s oldest and largest advocacy organization for dwarfism, criticized Jones’ use of the term.

Jones watches the action during a warm-up before a game between the Cowboys and the New Orleans Saints.
In with statementThe LPA stated that the term “has been widely known as a derogatory term for years and should be common knowledge to anyone in the public arena like Jerry Jones.”

“Ignorance at this stage is simply no excuse. Any use of this disparaging insult, along with suggestions or insinuations that our status exists for entertainment, is regrettable and unforgivable. Millions of people with dwarfism around the world already face unfair disadvantages in their daily lives. due to their disabilities, including discrimination, harassment and assault.”

Later that day, Jones apologized for using the term. “Earlier today, I made a mention that I understand could be taken as offensive. I apologize,” he said in a statement released by several media outlets.

In 2015 LPA called for the abolition of the term “m **** t”.

“The dwarf community has stated that they prefer to be called dwarfs, small people, people of short stature or people with dwarfism, or simply and most preferably, by their first name.”

CNN has reached out to the Cowboys for comment.