An article on The Grio discusses the way in which the term “pause” has become the new phrase used to clear up the homosexual implications of one’s words or actions, much in the same way as “no homo.”
It’s not as obviously homophobic as Kobe Bryant’s f-word insult that was hurled at a referee, and it generally invokes laughter rather than scorn, but “pause” is no less indicative of a troubling homophobic mindset, particularly among young black men. The underlying fear is that others will perceive them as gay, and therefore less of a man and unworthy of respect. As such, “pause” and “no homo” are used to distance one’s self from all things homosexual, real or perceived.
In referencing the NBA, the piece focuses on the prevalence of such language in the league and whether or not its general use should be considered harmless or homophobic.