Saturday, April 7, 2012

Jeer and Cheers

At the end of March Boston pitcher John Lackey made some headlines.

Here's a portion of the March 27th Boston Globe article:
“Guys having a beer after their start has been going on for the last 100 years,’’ Lackey said. “This is retarded. It’s not like we were sitting up there doing it every night. It’s not even close to what people think.’’

That didn't sit well with me.  So I went to the Red Sox Fan Feedback page and sent them my thoughts:.

The recent comments by John Lackey about "chicken and beer in the clubhouse thing" being "retarded" has me a bit upset and disappointed.

I'm sure that Mr. Lackey could have used a better word to describe the "clubhouse thing" and I would encourage him to visit and pledge to eliminate the demeaning use of the R-word.

My daughter has Down syndrome and is clinically mentally retarded. She is anything but that. She is bright, playful, humorous, intelligent, and likes to watch baseball, either on television or at the local AA stadium.

She's too young to know that Mr. Lackey's comment is hurtful, but I'm old enough to know. I would hope that Mr. Lackey is, as well.

The Boston Red Sox have a great history and tradition. I don't want to see it crumble, even in the slightest, over Mr. Lackey's comment.

I wish the Red Sox the best in the upcoming season.

Mark Aubrey
father and defender of Caroline

Later that day the Boston Globe reported:
The team's media relations department issued the following statement from Lackey: "I apologize for my thoughtless choice of words that appeared in print earlier today. I meant no harm, and I am sorry to all I offended."

This afternoon I received an email from the Red Sox:
Thanks for writing to the Red Sox and I apologize for the delayed response. We make it our goal to personally respond to every piece of mail that we receive.

There were a number of calls and emails from Red Sox Nation fans who were disappointed with John Lackey’s choice of words during a recent interview. Please know that your voice is being heard and that the Red Sox do not condone the use of words that discriminate or put down any one or group of people – especially those who are in most need of our support.

John Lackey realized his error and issued a statement. In that statement, he apologized for his ”thoughtless choice of words” saying he meant no harm, and apologized to all he may have offended.

Again, thanks for writing, and sharing your feelings. Your thoughts and views remain important to us. We will share your sentiments with the leaders of our organization, as well as with John. In the meantime, we hope you enjoy this 100th Anniversary Season of the Red Sox at Fenway Park.


Phil Derick
Fenway Ambassador
Boston Red Sox

That day, almost two weeks ago, wasn't great, but it turned out well. I accepted Lackey's apology at face value. I don't really think that he meant harm and hopefully he'll pause and take thought before he speaks.

image lifted from Sports of Boston

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