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Saturday, October 14, 2006

Fox Fires Lyons For Racially Insensitive Comment

Fox baseball broadcaster Steve Lyons has been fired for making a racially insensitive comment directed at colleague Lou Piniella’s Hispanic heritage on the air during Game 3 of the American League championship series…

In the second inning of Friday’s game between Detroit and Oakland, Piniella talked about the success light-hitting A’s infielder Marco Scutaro had in the first round of the playoffs. Piniella said that slugger Frank Thomas and Eric Chavez needed to contribute, comparing Scutaro’s production to finding a “wallet on Friday” and hoping it happened again the next week.

Later, Piniella said the A’s needed Thomas to get “en fuego”—hot in Spanish—because he was currently “frio”—or cold. After Brennaman praised Piniella for being bilingual, Lyons spoke up.

Lyons said that Piniella was “hablaing Espanol”—butchering the conjugation for the word “to speak”—and added, “I still can’t find my wallet.”

North Side Chicago Expatriate Giants Fan Posted: October 14, 2006 at 08:22 PM | 279 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: announcers, television

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   101. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 03:00 AM (#2212224)
As soon as I heard it I was shocked and felt he was implying that Hispanics are habitual wallet thieves.
   102. Andere Richtingen Posted: October 15, 2006 at 03:01 AM (#2212225)
Count me in as one of those that as soon I heard the remark, I was fairly shocked and wondered what might come of it.

Okay, but that doesn't make the comments themselves insensitive. Were you offended? What's important is if Lyons intentionally made a joke about Hispanics being thieves, or whether it would be reasonable for someone to think that, because yes, that would be offensive. It sounds like you thought that it sounded like he might have been making such a joke, but really, it's simpler to explain that Lyons made an unfortunate juxtaposition of a wisecrack about stealing wallets with a wisecrack about speaking Spanish, without meaning to tie the two together causally. My guess is -- and again, I didn't hear the actual broadcast -- is that it didn't really sound like he was connecting the two wisecracks.

I've argued here that Lyons is a professional broadcaster, ridiculous as it seems, and he is held to a higher standard of decorum because of that. That's fine with me. But as someone else pointed out here, what do you expect when you hire Steve Lyons? Lyons has been with Fox since the beginning of their MLB broadcasts, ad he was brought on because of his loud personality and off-the-cuff demeanor, and certainly not to be thoughtful. Fox firing him for being who he is and who they KNOW he is seems unfair to me. I guess he was a on short leash after they made the comments about the blind guy, but I still fail to see the big deal about this series of comments that were so dumb that it's hard to believe they were taken so seriously.
   103. Johnny Grubb Posted: October 15, 2006 at 03:15 AM (#2212242)
(May be a double post)

"I don't understand him, and I don't want to sit too close to him now," Lyons continued.

See, to me this totally connects the crack about Spanish-speaking Lou and Lyons' concern about his wallet.

Now, I don't believe Lyons said it maliciously -- but it's just not acceptable to make jokes that rely on ethnic stereotyping.
   104. John Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: October 15, 2006 at 03:44 AM (#2212274)
Let's not get into a question of who said what and who else did what to whom. The important thing here is that Steve Lyons has been fired; I think this is something we can all get behind, is it not? This is a great day for baseball.
   105. sunnyday2 Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:01 AM (#2212284)
I'll tell you what's insensitive is firing a guy and insinuating to all the world that he's a racist, when you really want to fire him because he is incompetent (and so are you for hiring him in the first place). Fox is what ought to get fired.
   106. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:07 AM (#2212291)
Now, I don't believe Lyons said it maliciously -- but it's just not acceptable to make jokes that rely on ethnic stereotyping.
In what way did the joke "rely on ethnic stereotyping"? What ethnic stereotype? Is there some famous stereotype of which I'm not aware of Hispanic people being pickpockets? Wallet fetishists?
   107. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:09 AM (#2212292)
I'll tell you what's insensitive is firing a guy and insinuating to all the world that he's a racist, when you really want to fire him because he is incompetent (and so are you for hiring him in the first place).

You know, that's a good point. Why the hell not wait until the end of these playoffs to fire him? Who are they going to get to replace him now, John Kruk?

Fox is what ought to get fired.

They should take away its cubs or pups or whatever you call fox children.
   108. Steve Treder Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:13 AM (#2212297)
Is there some famous stereotype of which I'm not aware of Hispanic people being pickpockets?

Not pickpockets per se, but robbers ("banditos"), scofflaws, and gangbangers in general, well, yes. Welcome to reality.

As for Lyons, any excuse to ashcan that indescribably incompetent waste of airwaves is long overdue. The real scandal is why whoever it was that hired him is still employed.
   109. Johnny Grubb Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:15 AM (#2212301)
In what way did the joke "rely on ethnic stereotyping"? What ethnic stereotype? Is there some famous stereotype of which I'm not aware of Hispanic people being pickpockets? Wallet fetishists?


OK, maybe that's not the proper term for it. How about generally disparaging ethnic references?
   110. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:42 AM (#2212314)
Lyons wasn't fired for being an "evil racist pig" and he wasn't fired for something he said to his pal over his cellphone. He was fired for making "racially insensitive comments" on national TV. In other words, for having poor judgment about what he said--which, one would think, would be something a guy doing a national telecast should have.

Damn.

I don't think I've said anything that's NOT Racially insensitive.
   111. greenback calls it soccer Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:47 AM (#2212316)
I don't think I've said anything that's NOT Racially insensitive.

Your post regarding your hopes for ESPN's studios wasn't racially insensitive.
   112. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:49 AM (#2212319)
As soon as I heard it I was shocked and felt he was implying that Hispanics are habitual wallet thieves.

Me too, actually.

Your post regarding your hopes for ESPN's studios wasn't racially insensitive.

Well, I like most of the minorities working at/for ESPN.
   113. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:12 AM (#2212338)
Btw, when I make a couple of "Cory Lidle is Dead" jokes, do I deserve to have my medical ethics questioned?

It's happening right now btw.
   114. RichRifkin Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:31 AM (#2212349)
The Dodgers outfielder, who is Jewish, elected not to play during the Yom Kippur holiday, prompting Lyons to say, "He's not a practicing Jew. He didn't marry a Jewish girl. And from what I understand, he never had a bar mitzvah, which is unfortunate because he didn't get the money." Fox Sports issued an apology.
Speaking for myself, as a Jew, I don't find this offensive at all. I can't imagine why anyone, Jewish or not, would find this offensive.

"Not pickpockets per se, but robbers ("banditos"), scofflaws, and gangbangers in general, well, yes. Welcome to reality."

Steve,

Correct me if I'm wrong. But isn't the stereotype (based of course on a lot of generalized reality) that many young urbaqn Hispanic males are in street gangs, and hence are "gangsters."? I thought the term you used, "gangbangers," is for a person who participates in a "gang rape."
   115. RichRifkin Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:33 AM (#2212350)
urbaqn urban
   116. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:35 AM (#2212351)
I thought the term you used, "gangbangers," is for a person who participates in a "gang rape."

Gangbangers isn't really "gang bang" or "wild sex orgy" anymore,but people that participate in gang-related violent activities.
   117. Damon Rutherford Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:41 AM (#2212352)
Include me as one of those who believe Lyons was just screwed. The wallet joke, which by the way I found somewhat amusing, was aimed directly at Pinella, independent of the Spanish joke. At no point did it cross my mind that Lyons was being insensitive to Hispanics and their culture.

ESPN apparently fired Harold Reynolds for sexual harassment, and Lyons now fired by Fox for a BS racist remark. Can't these corporations grow a pair and fire people simply because they're annoying, incompetent, and not worthy of their position? Do they foolishly sign these personalities to guaranteed long-term contracts?
   118. Damon Rutherford Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:47 AM (#2212354)
I can't imagine why anyone, Jewish or not, would find this offensive.

Because our culture has become over-sensitive, and it only takes a few crazies to spark controversy on which the media will feast. Damn media.
   119. RichRifkin Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:49 AM (#2212356)
Am I the only one who didn't know that Lou Piniella was Hispanic? I never gave any thought to the linguistic ancestry of Piniella. But when I'd heard lists of various minorities who have been major league managers, I never heard Lou Piniella included.
   120. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 05:55 AM (#2212358)
Maybe,,but this is an issue of sensibilities and societal standards, not logic.
Well, I admit: "Who cares about logic?" is a pretty damn good trump card in a debate.
   121. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 06:00 AM (#2212363)
ESPN apparently fired Harold Reynolds for sexual harassment, and Lyons now fired by Fox for a BS racist remark. Can't these corporations grow a pair and fire people simply because they're annoying, incompetent, and not worthy of their position? Do they foolishly sign these personalities to guaranteed long-term contracts?
Lyons, sure? But Reynolds "annoying"? I don't think he was the sharpest bulb in the shed, but he was hardly Tim McCarver. He was enthusiastic and had a personality (unlike Mr. Brantley), and he didn't act as if he were god's gift to baseball, like another announcing second baseman I can think of.
   122. KJOK Posted: October 15, 2006 at 06:31 AM (#2212369)
Brenneman is annoying (its not Greeley!) but Jack Buck is light years more hatable.

I certainly hope you meant JOE Buck, because Jack is certainly not 'hatable'.
   123. Dr. Vaux Posted: October 15, 2006 at 06:52 AM (#2212371)
See, Joe has a legitimate announcing style, which I just happen not to like very much. Thom Brenneman, on the other hand, is a doofus who thinks he's being dramatic, but actually has no mind of his own, and no way of doing things that isn't calculated thoroughly (as thoroughly as his addled brain can conceive) and executed poorly.
   124. Damon Rutherford Posted: October 15, 2006 at 07:22 AM (#2212377)
Lyons, sure? But Reynolds "annoying"? I don't think he was the sharpest bulb in the shed, but he was hardly Tim McCarver. He was enthusiastic and had a personality (unlike Mr. Brantley), and he didn't act as if he were god's gift to baseball, like another announcing second baseman I can think of.

OK, so then change my "and" to "and/or". But, Reynolds did indeed annoy me.
   125. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 07:29 AM (#2212378)
I did mean Joe. No problems with Jack. Joe OTOH....
   126. Miko Supports Shane's Spam Habit Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:42 AM (#2212397)
Am I the only one who didn't know that Lou Piniella was Hispanic?

I didn't know. Out of curiosity, what is this background? I thought there was some link to Spain.
   127. JMM Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:48 AM (#2212402)
Am I the only one who didn't know that Lou Piniella was Hispanic? I never gave any thought to the linguistic ancestry of Piniella. But when I'd heard lists of various minorities who have been major league managers, I never heard Lou Piniella included.

He's parents (or grandparents) were Spanish, not Latin, so while he is Hispanic, he's also white.
   128. Isotta Fraschini Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:48 AM (#2212403)
I'm no Lyons fan, but from what I've read here it seems that he got the shaft. Correct my facts if they're wrong, but here's what it appears to me happened:

Piniella made a comment about finding a wallet

Piniella spoke Spanish, Lyons joked that he didn't understand him

Lyons says he STILL can't find his wallet (did he mention this earlier?) and doesn't want to sit too close to "Pickpocket Piniella" (or "Fingersmith," for other Roald Dahl fans out there) because he might have somethig else stolen.

It appears to me that the comments regarded 2 different matters but coincided unfortunately for Lyons. Totally taken the wrong way. He may have tried to explain this to his bosses, but good riddance to bad rubbish for the similar he'd caused them.
   129. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:07 AM (#2212413)
Am I the only one who didn't know that Lou Piniella was Hispanic? I never gave any thought to the linguistic ancestry of Piniella. But when I'd heard lists of various minorities who have been major league managers, I never heard Lou Piniella included.

Up until fairly recently I always thought that Piniella was Italian, probably because of that famous temper of his, not to mention that switchblade you always see him trimming his fingernails with. But then again in high school I dated a girl named Feldman and had no idea that she was Jewish. And in grade school I heard a friend of mine complain that our teacher was prejudiced, and I immediately thought that "Pregadist" was some nasty exotic sect of Christianity that I'd never heard about.

All of which leads me to conclude that Norwegians are just generally clueless.
   130. Hello Rusty Kuntz, Goodbye Rusty Cars Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:10 AM (#2212415)
Steve Lyons doesn't care about black people.
   131. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 15, 2006 at 12:59 PM (#2212425)
In what way did the joke "rely on ethnic stereotyping"? What ethnic stereotype? Is there some famous stereotype of which I'm not aware of Hispanic people being pickpockets? Wallet fetishists?

Are you serious? At this point I think you're just trying to stir the pot.

Speaking for myself, as a Jew, I don't find this offensive at all. I can't imagine why anyone, Jewish or not, would find this offensive.

I do. Not b/c of the comment about the money, but because he's saying that Green has no business taking off for Yom Kippur. Who is he to criticize Green's level of observance?

"Not pickpockets per se, but robbers ("banditos"), scofflaws, and gangbangers in general, well, yes. Welcome to reality."

Steve,

Correct me if I'm wrong. But isn't the stereotype (based of course on a lot of generalized reality) that many young urbaqn Hispanic males are in street gangs, and hence are "gangsters."? I thought the term you used, "gangbangers," is for a person who participates in a "gang rape."


Gangbanger is the more modern term. "Gangster" is a bit antiquated.
   132. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: October 15, 2006 at 01:13 PM (#2212432)
I suspect that the decision to fire Lyons was made outside of Fox Sports, but rather by a senior programming director of the parent network. Regardless of where one thinks the comment falls on the racist-insensitive-thoughtless-dumb spectrum, its quite likely that someone, somewhere would have made an issue over it. If Fox doesn't do anything with Lyons, then it risks a backlash that includes bad publicity plus a possible buycott--that could devastate their fall schedule. If Fox doesn't do much initially but then later fires Lyons, then they're just pandering/caving under pressure. So their best option is to do what they did and summarily terminate Lyons before a backlash has a chance to form. Fox gets out in front of the situation, acts decisively, and quickly insulates itself from any retalitory action. Lyons probably gets screwed, but that's just business.

This whole thing reminds me of the Larry Krueger incident last summer on KNBR ("braindead Carribean players swinging at slop"). Like Lyons, I don't think that Kruegar intended to be malicious, it was just an off-the-cuff remark that was poorly worded and a reasonable person could find offensive. Initially, the network stood behind Krueger and allowed him to broadcast for a few more days during which he issued (what I thought at the time FWIW) was a sincere and adequate apology. That didn't defuse the situation and he was suspended. Then KNBR's morning show some ridiculous parody of a Felipe Alou interview on the subject and all hell broke loose: Krueger, the morning show producer, and longtime station manager Bob Agnew were terminated. Like the Lyons termination, the station did not fire these guys out of principle but to protect a commercial interest (the sale of the station was pending and the sellers didn't want to risk negative feedback making the buyers nervous). Like Lyons, an on-air personality was probably unjustly fired in order to protect the station/network's broader commercial interests.

Trying to make logical sense out of this termination is misplaced effort, IMHO. It was a simple business decision for Fox: there's not much to be gained by treating Lyons fairly, but a lot to lose by not taking a proactive, decisive action. Fox cannot risk their fall ratings suffering because of bad publicity about this incident, not when it can mitigate the bad PR by terminating a fungible (if not horrible) on-air personality.

Sucks for Lyons, but that's just the business.
   133. bunyon Posted: October 15, 2006 at 01:17 PM (#2212433)
I wonder if the offended party was Pinella. He and Lyons seemed at odds in all their broadcasts and I thought Lou seemed more relaxed and engaged in game 4.
   134. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 01:18 PM (#2212434)
All of which leads me to conclude that Norwegians are just generally clueless.

They do, however, share the record for the fastest surrender.
   135. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: October 15, 2006 at 01:25 PM (#2212436)
All of which leads me to conclude that Norwegians are just generally clueless.

They do, however, share the record for the fastest surrender.


You must be thinking of Denmark. The Norwegiens resisted for several months.
   136. Foster Posted: October 15, 2006 at 04:53 PM (#2212504)
It appears to me that the comments regarded 2 different matters but coincided unfortunately for Lyons. Totally taken the wrong way. He may have tried to explain this to his bosses, but good riddance to bad rubbish for the similar he'd caused them.

Late to the party here, but I wanted to chip in.

I know Lyons a bit -- acquaintances, not friends, maybe a half-dozen conversations, including one about the Green incident. It bothered him, both perception-wise, and career-wise, and he feels it was a bad joke misinterpreted.

I am in the camp that busting on Pinella's Spanish and tying back to the wallet comment were not meant to be related (except that they were both busting on Pinella.)

That said: after the Green thing, and the glasses thing, I'd have thought he might know to steer clear of the ballbusting stuff in general. That's his personality, that locker room #### talk; it's fun at the bar, but it sometimes does not translate to the rest of the world.

I think he's guilty of confusing "edgy" with stupid #### that's not funny enough to keep you out of trouble.
   137. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 15, 2006 at 06:46 PM (#2212545)
The Norwegiens resisted for several months.

The Norwegians gave us Quisling and his infamous Nasjonal Samling, but they also had a powerful resistance movement which lasted for a hell of a lot more than a few months. The truth is that no country, once occupied, "resisted" the Nazis to the point of overthrowing them on their own. Trying to say that this country did this while that country didn't is little more than an exercise in selective memory. One of the main virtues I would attribute to the resistance fighters I had the privilege of meeting through my father's relatives (his brother was himself betrayed and died in a concentration camp) was that they were extremely clear eyed about all this. They knew of their Quislings and they didn't try to pretend that they hadn't been a factor in the Nazi takeover. But amidst those few million people there were also a hell of a lot of real life Victor Laszlos---and yes, I know that in Casablanca he was Czech.
   138. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 07:33 PM (#2212587)
Well, I admit: "Who cares about logic?" is a pretty damn good trump card in a debate.

Cute, but that sidesteps the substance of the issue. If people inadvertently offend someone in a public (or private) setting, in my exp they usually say "sorry" or "grow up" or "chill" not "it was illogical for you to be offended and here's why." And again, in professional settings, "sorry" is usually the safest, most prudent choice. What people are sensitive about generally isn't based on logic. If you want to say "chill, FOX and America" go ahead--which IMO is pretty much what you're saying, once we get past the semantics/stylistics. And trying to claim the "logical" high ground with this kind of issue is unproductive.

Am I the only one who didn't know that Lou Piniella was Hispanic?

Piniella comes from a Latin American community in Miami. I am not sure if he is Spanish. I learned this reading "The Bronx Zoo" in junior high--Lyle, Hunter and Nettles used to rag on Piniella and vice-versa and they would use "Cuban Lou" sometimes in the banter. It wasn't clear if he actually was of Cuban descent--I would think not, but I have no idea.

Most people, though, I would guess, assume Piniella is Italian, like Andy here:

Up until fairly recently I always thought that Piniella was Italian, probably because of that famous temper of his


Andy was making a little joke, but I have heard many fans refer to Piniella as an "Italian hothead" or whatever.

I don't think I've said anything that's NOT Racially insensitive.

Yeah, but you're funnier than Lyons, so it's OK.

The Dodgers outfielder, who is Jewish, elected not to play during the Yom Kippur holiday, prompting Lyons to say, "He's not a practicing Jew. He didn't marry a Jewish girl. And from what I understand, he never had a bar mitzvah, which is unfortunate because he didn't get the money." Fox Sports issued an apology.
Speaking for myself, as a Jew, I don't find this offensive at all. I can't imagine why anyone, Jewish or not, would find this offensive
.

Well, you've got the old Jew=greedy connection, and Lyons is suggesting that Green has to marry a Jew and be a "practicing Jew" to have the right to participate in Yom Kippur. IOW, he is questioning the sincerity/utility of Green's religious observances, which I think would offend just about anybody involved in religious activity. That's fairly nasty, intrusive stuff. And again, if one of your buddies said this to you before the company flag football game you were going to skip, that might be fine between you and him. But Lyons was on national TV and doesn't know Green well or at all, in all likelihood. Context matters a lot in these things; sensitivity/prudence about what one says are not "one size fits all" nor should they be.
   139. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 07:49 PM (#2212600)
In what way did the joke "rely on ethnic stereotyping"? What ethnic stereotype? Is there some famous stereotype of which I'm not aware of Hispanic people being pickpockets? Wallet fetishists?

Are you serious? At this point I think you're just trying to stir the pot.
Of course I'm serious. Why do people always ask me if I'm serious?

Look, I've heard the ones about Mexicans being lazy, Jews being greedy, Irish being drunks, French being cowards, etc... I've never heard the Hispanic pickpocket stereotype.
Speaking for myself, as a Jew, I don't find this offensive at all. I can't imagine why anyone, Jewish or not, would find this offensive.

I do. Not b/c of the comment about the money, but because he's saying that Green has no business taking off for Yom Kippur. Who is he to criticize Green's level of observance?
Nobody. And if I were Green, I'd be offended that he questioned my religius beliefs. But I'd be offended as Green, not as a Jew. He's saying something about the former, not the latter. (The money part actually does sound like offensive ethnic stereotyping, but I wouldn't want someone punished for such a minor comment.)
   140. RichRifkin Posted: October 15, 2006 at 07:54 PM (#2212607)
I guess I was the only Jewish kid who was happy to get gifts, including cash, when I was bar mitzvahed.

I assume that Lyons thinks, like I think, that all kids would be happy to get gifts, including cash, be they Jews or goyim.
   141. Steve Treder Posted: October 15, 2006 at 07:55 PM (#2212609)
I've never heard the Hispanic pickpocket stereotype

Again, I've never heard it as pickpocket per se, but the stereotype of the Hispanic bandit/thief/lowlife is rather pervasive. Maybe it's a California thing.
   142. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:03 PM (#2212617)
But I'd be offended as Green, not as a Jew.

Agree to an extent--I think it's both, as I said.

Of course I'm serious. Why do people always ask me if I'm serious?


Take it as a compliment. You're just a naturally funny guy.

I assume that Lyons thinks, like I think

This is the problem--or one of them, and it is part of why people need to be careful about what they say. Lyons may be--probably is--just a guy who tries to be funny and doesn't quite do it right but is pretty nice and open-minded. Or this pattern of comments may indicate that he is seriously racist and are a peek behind the curtain. You have suggested in the past that you give people the "benefit of the doubt" in this area. That's fine. But there are also good reasons NOT to give people that benefit when it comes to issues of prejudice, whether it's based on race, gender, seuxal orientation, religion, disability--whatever.
   143. BTF's left-wing cheering section (formerly_dp) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:05 PM (#2212619)
I've heard the ones about Mexicans being lazy, Jews being greedy, Irish being drunks, French being cowards, etc... I've never heard the Hispanic pickpocket stereotype.

I consider racial insensitivity sort of an amateur hobby, and I've never heard this one either. It hasn't popped up on Mind of Mencia, and he tends to be pretty up on these things.

Do you know the one about Neocons being soulless children of the devil?
   144. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:06 PM (#2212620)
Again, I've never heard it as pickpocket per se, but the stereotype of the Hispanic bandit/thief/lowlife is rather pervasive. Maybe it's a California thing.

Naw. You hear it MORE in CA, due to demographics, but I have heard it in Kentucky, Ohio, New York, Arizona...
   145. DCW3 Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:15 PM (#2212628)
I consider racial insensitivity sort of an amateur hobby, and I've never heard this one either.

Frank: So how was everyone's weekend?

Bob: It was good. I played poker with some of the guys. Ended up winning about fifty bucks.

Ted: I got some more parts for my model train set. It's really coming together now.

Google Boy: I yelled at a bunch of greedy Jew bastards. And then I went over to Koreatown and told all those Chinamen that they don't know how to drive.
   146. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:18 PM (#2212632)
But there are also good reasons NOT to give people that benefit when it comes to issues of prejudice, whether it's based on race, gender, seuxal orientation, religion, disability--whatever.
But, especially given a situation where the person is just a talker, and has no power to do anything -- it's not like Lyons has the ability to hire, fire, etc., based on any prejudice he might have -- it seems to me that there are better reasons to give people that benefit. Given how high the consequences are to the speaker if you don't give him the benefit of the doubt.

Do you know the one about Neocons being soulless children of the devil?
You mean Jews? Yeah. Heard that one. (Of course we're soulless; we sold our souls. But we did get a very good deal for them.)
   147. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 15, 2006 at 08:31 PM (#2212640)
Of course I'm serious. Why do people always ask me if I'm serious?

Because I don't buy the notion that you've never heard of the latino=thief stereotype.
   148. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 09:07 PM (#2212652)
Because I don't buy the notion that you've never heard of the latino=thief stereotype.
Leaving aside that nobody engaging in racial stereotyping is going to use the word "Latino" in the first place, I've never heard that stereotype, no. As I said, Mexicans are lazy is common. (Oddly, they're also taking all our jobs.) Or, as per Reggie White, Hispanics are "gifted in family structure." But thieves? Nope.
   149. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: October 15, 2006 at 09:18 PM (#2212660)
I'm with Nieporent. N-ggas and wops are thieves. But wetbacks? Just lazy.
   150. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 09:20 PM (#2212662)
But thieves? Nope.

Guess you never ate any Fritos. Probably too high in trans fats.

http://64.41.109.149/school/bandito.html

Or saw any westerns.
   151. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 09:24 PM (#2212666)
Here is an article about it advertising/media: It's a PDF. It took me about 10 seconds to find it on google.

www.hispaniconline.com/magazine/PDF/July 1996 Ban the Bandito.pdf -
   152. BTF's left-wing cheering section (formerly_dp) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 09:34 PM (#2212672)
they're also <s>taking</s> stealing all our jobs.

See? Thieves!

It is really important when we're stereotyping not to generalize- there are very specific stereotypes associated with each particular Latin American group...don't lump the Dominicans in with the Mexicans.

If Pinella is Spanish, I don't think he counts as Hispanic. I'm 1/2 Spanish and I don't consider myself Hispanic. I don't think the census counts Spanish as Hispanic; I probably could've fudged it and qualified for some extra scholarships if I wanted to...
   153. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 15, 2006 at 09:47 PM (#2212681)
Even if you haven't heard the stereotype (and I think it's pretty obvious that it's out there), how is that relevant? If Lyons had made a joke suggesting that all Chinese people are rapists, would that be acceptable? It's not a stereotype I've ever heard, but that doesn't make it ok.
   154. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 10:08 PM (#2212695)
Even if you haven't heard the stereotype (and I think it's pretty obvious that it's out there), how is that relevant? If Lyons had made a joke suggesting that all Chinese people are rapists, would that be acceptable? It's not a stereotype I've ever heard, but that doesn't make it ok.
Of course such a suggestion would not be acceptable; the point is that I don't think he <u>was</u> suggesting that "all Hispanics are thieves," and the lack of any such stereotype makes it far less likely that this is an accurate interpretation of what he was saying.

If there are two interpretations of a statement, one that's innocuous and one that says that Jews are greedy, it may be reasonable to interpret it the latter way. But if there are two interpretations of a statement, one that's innocuous and one that says that Jews are all drunks, it's much less reasonable to interpret it the latter way, because that's not something that anybody, bigot or non-bigot, tends to say.
   155. Ace of Kevin Bass Posted: October 15, 2006 at 10:14 PM (#2212700)
Even if you haven't heard the stereotype (and I think it's pretty obvious that it's out there), how is that relevant? If Lyons had made a joke suggesting that all Chinese people are rapists, would that be acceptable? It's not a stereotype I've ever heard, but that doesn't make it ok.

That would be relevant had Lyons made a joke suggesting all Latinos are wallet thieves. But because he didn't, whether or not he was playing into a stereotype becomes very relevant. If not, as the Pythons say, it's just abuse.
   156. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 15, 2006 at 10:16 PM (#2212702)
Of course such a suggestion would not be acceptable; the point is that I don't think he was suggesting that "all Hispanics are thieves," and the lack of any such stereotype makes it far less likely that this is an accurate interpretation of what he was saying.

(a) Again, the stereotype is out there. The fact that you aren't aware of it doesn't mean it doesn't exist. (b) A number of people who listened to the broadcast did think he was suggesting that. You're basically saying, "well, I think they're wrong." That's nice, but your POV isn't necessarily relevant. And that's the problem in a nutshell -- you think your POV (not a common stereotype, Lyons wasn't making the connection) is more correct and therefore entitled to more deference than anyone else's. But why should we assume that your take on this is more rational or accurate than the people who were offended?
   157. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 10:35 PM (#2212710)
and the lack of any such stereotype

The fact that you lack awareness of the stereotype doesn't mean it's not there, as 156 says. I provided two relevant links; I could find many more. So could you if you looked.

that I don't think he was

But, you don't really know. And when Lyons is asked about it, he will of course say "I didn't mean it that way."

it's not like Lyons has the ability to hire, fire, etc., based on any prejudice he might have -- it seems to me that there are better reasons to give people that benefit. Given how high the consequences are to the speaker if you don't give him the benefit of the doubt.

Well, he certainly has an agent, maybe a publicist, maybe another PR person, maybe a financial advisor. He may have his own website with a web designer. He may have a maid, a gardener, a personal trainer. Hard to know. But the fact that he is not an executive really has no relevance. He is responsible for what comes out of his mouth, and as my old buddy Benitez points out, he works for a big corporation that has an image to maintain. And while FOX may be seen as trashy, it does not want to be seen as condoning racial attitudes. That, combined with Lyons' fungibility and track record of bad judgment, may have motivated the call to can him.
   158. Eraser-X is emphatically dominating teh site!!! Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:09 PM (#2212733)
That's what happens when you let white people run networks--they hire racist crackers and then they get all paranoid and fire them to save face. Those pale faces, always trying to save face.
   159. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:13 PM (#2212738)
Those pale faces, always trying to save face.

I thought it was Asians that did that. Since I wasn't aware of this stereotype of white people, it's OK with me if you say it, because I don't think you really mean it.
   160. RichRifkin Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:18 PM (#2212744)
I must be the most ignorant person when it comes to knowing these stereotypes. Not only was I unaware that Google Boy majored in ethnophobia, but I didn't know that Hispanics were supposed to be pickpockets or lazy. I thought the stereotype was that Gypsies were pickpockets, though I must say that I've never known a single Gypsy in my life.

If you live where I live, in the Central Valley of California, and you see that almost every farm laborer, almost every roofer (a miserable job in our hot climate), almost every landscaping laborer, and almost every other physically demanding job in construction is being done by immigrant Mexicans, you would have to be deaf, dumb and blind to think that Mexicans are not hard workers. They are, in fact, the hardest workers. I'd like to see anyone who thinks that Mexicans are lazy do any of those jobs in the hot California sun. They couldn't last a day.
   161. TDF, situational idiot Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:23 PM (#2212746)
I didn't know that Hispanics were supposed to be pickpockets

Here in rural Ohio, you don't leave anything of value where the "seasonal labor" can get to it.
   162. rr Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:24 PM (#2212748)
If you live where I live, in the Central Valley of California, and you see that almost every farm laborer, almost every roofer (a miserable job in our hot climate), almost every landscaping laborer, and almost every other physically demanding job in construction is being done by immigrant Mexicans, you would have to be deaf, dumb and blind to think that Mexicans are not hard workers. They are, in fact, the hardest workers. I'd like to see anyone who thinks that Mexicans are lazy do any of those jobs in the hot California sun. They couldn't last a day.

Here in San Diego, one of my night jobs is teaching construction math. About 60% of the guys in the program are of Mexican descent, about equally divided between guys born in the States and guys born in Mexico. A few still live in TJ--awful commute. Most of them get up at 5 and work their butts off all day and then come to class.

I make sure not to get too close to them, though--the #######'ll rob you blind. And I get really snotty if they start "hablaing Espanol" in my damn classroom.
   163. bunyon Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:25 PM (#2212749)
Rich is right. Does the Mexican = lazy stereotype come from the common practice of siestas? I wondered about this when I attended a conference in Brazil (not that they're Mexicans of course). The waiters laughed at me for drinking coffee at lunch. I found out later that it was because I wouldn't be able to take a nap. I wonder how hard they would've laughed if they'd seen the slate of talks I went to while they were sleeping. FWIW, Americans need to take more siestas.


As to offending people, rather than worry about it I say what I believe and feel is right. If it offends anyone I am truly not sorry. If they wish to debate my beliefs, I'm up for it.

Also, FWIW, everyone is a pickpocket. I mean, I've seen pickpockets of every race.
   164. bunyon Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:28 PM (#2212752)
Actually, the thief stereotype I always heard is Arabs. Some pretty famous stories from the Brits who first went into that area of the world.

But, again, leave your valuables anywhere and they'll disappear.
   165. Francoeur Sans Gages (AlouGoodbye) Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:33 PM (#2212756)
Actually, the thief stereotype I always heard is Arabs.
List of famous Arab thieves.

1. Ali Baba.

That's it.
   166. bunyon Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:49 PM (#2212774)
Last Alou, I don't have links or citations but I've read accounts of the Brits who colonized Arabia and they claimed to always be getting robbed by the locals. I was just passing along a stereotype I've heard, not stating it as a true statement.
   167. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:53 PM (#2212780)
If DMN says that Hispanics=thieves is not a common stereotype, then I believe him. There's no Wendy's, either...just Burger King and McDonalds. Only Dominos and Pizza Hut, there's no Little Caesar's or Papa Gino's. And Quiznos, doesn't exist. Only Subway does.

I'm hungry. Can you tell?
   168. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 15, 2006 at 11:56 PM (#2212784)
Oh, and everyone knows the real thieves are the Romanis. The Arabs and the Hispanics learned their trade from them.
   169. rr Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:05 AM (#2212794)
Romanis.

Since I have a colleague named Romani, I am offended.
   170. Eraser-X is emphatically dominating teh site!!! Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:05 AM (#2212796)
Wow, I hope robinred and I don't get fired from Primer for this thread.

"Lazy" seems to be one of those catch-alls that people tag on to whatever ethnic group they are hating on at the time.

But, again, leave your valuables anywhere and they'll disappear.


Except Japan.

Last Alou, I don't have links or citations but I've read accounts of the Brits who colonized Arabia and they claimed to always be getting robbed by the locals. I was just passing along a stereotype I've heard, not stating it as a true statement.


I would think the vast majority of colonized folks would steal from their colonizers.
   171. rr Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:12 AM (#2212810)
I'm hungry. Can you tell?

Me, too. Almost time for Game 4.
   172. Robert S. Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:13 AM (#2212813)
I'm amazed so many people here watch unmuted Fox baseball coverage.
   173. rr Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:14 AM (#2212816)
unmuted Fox baseball coverage

I never watch FOX unmuted. I did get to hear the Lyons, thing, though, on a news show.
   174. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:17 AM (#2212826)
Since I have a colleague named Romani, I am offended.

If you have a desk, keep it locked. HAHAHAH!! Whoops, I just got fired from Fox!
   175. Eraser-X is emphatically dominating teh site!!! Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:46 AM (#2212922)
Why didn't they just switch Lyons to the News division of the network with the other racists and retired veterans?
   176. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: October 16, 2006 at 12:46 AM (#2212923)
List of famous Arab thieves.

1. Ali Baba.

That's it.


I believe there are at least forty others.
   177. PanRains Posted: October 16, 2006 at 01:42 AM (#2213126)
Up until fairly recently I always thought that Piniella was Italian, probably because of that famous temper of his, not to mention that switchblade you always see him trimming his fingernails with. But then again in high school I dated a girl named Feldman and had no idea that she was Jewish. And in grade school I heard a friend of mine complain that our teacher was prejudiced, and I immediately thought that "Pregadist" was some nasty exotic sect of Christianity that I'd never heard about.


Nope. That's "pederast" you're thinking of. And the sect is pretty much the priesthood.
   178. Francoeur Sans Gages (AlouGoodbye) Posted: October 16, 2006 at 01:48 AM (#2213162)
I believe there are at least forty others.
They aren't famous. And Ali Baba killed them, so they never will be.
   179. RichRifkin Posted: October 16, 2006 at 03:54 AM (#2213535)
Remotely interesting trivia about the Gypsies/Romanis: they were originally immigrants to Europe from India.
   180. kthejoker Posted: October 16, 2006 at 02:26 PM (#2213702)
List of famous Arab thieves.

1. Ali Baba.

That's it.


Douglas Fairbanks.
   181. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: October 16, 2006 at 03:27 PM (#2213768)
Btw, when I make a couple of "Cory Lidle is Dead" jokes, do I deserve to have my medical ethics questioned?


Risking patients' lives again?

:)
   182. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 16, 2006 at 03:38 PM (#2213773)
Am I the only one who didn't know that Lou Piniella was Hispanic? I never gave any thought to the linguistic ancestry of Piniella. But when I'd heard lists of various minorities who have been major league managers, I never heard Lou Piniella included.


Glad you wrote it first, because this is the first I've ever heard of it, too, and I've been acquainted with Lou Piniella the public figure for 30+ years now.

To the extent I ever thought about it, I guess I defaulted to the "Italian-sounding surname, probably Italian," but the number of times that hit my overt consciousness can be counted on the fingers of one hand. I've never once heard Lou referred to as a "minority" or held out as an example of baseball's openness to minority hiring, or, for that matter as an example of Hispanic achievement.

Is he really even Hispanic?

I wonder if Lyons knew ... other than the "habla-ing Espanol" remark, which by the way I write off to the silly juvenile provincialism that sells so much in 21st c. America, akin to saying "parlez-vousing Francais."

As others have said, Fox essentially created the environment that would make Lyons think he had to say something "funny" so it's hard to really blame Lyons, but I am glad he's gone because he was worthless.
   183. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 16, 2006 at 03:49 PM (#2213789)
The question I would ask of you all is, in the context of the broadcast, why would Lyons say that he did not want to sit next to Piniella?
   184. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 16, 2006 at 03:50 PM (#2213790)
I read these threads and read the news and look for patterns, and I think I understand -- when a person uses an ethnic stereotype in a derogatory way over public airwaves, that's bad and he should be fired. Many intelligent and thoughtful people proffer many thoughtful and intelligent reasons why.

Then I read that a person had said about a Jew that "he never had a bar mitzvah, which is unfortunate because he didn't get the money," and I found no public outcry and no firing of the person and I went back to being confused.
   185. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:05 PM (#2213804)
OK, I re-read the thread, and at least one of you has forwarded the idea that Lyons was saying that Piniella was a wallet stealer, not hispanics. But how did Lyons come to that conclusion? I don't by the "moron defense". He knew why he said it. He made some sort of connection in his alleged "mind". Now we have to try to interpret his thoughts. Any other conclusion than the one given for his firing is a longer reach than the reason they settled on for firing him.
   186. Gaelan Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:15 PM (#2213811)
There are some seriously funny comments in this thread. Most of them are even intentional.
   187. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:24 PM (#2213825)
Lyons is a lame dope, and I'm late to the party here, but there was no wallet "theft" Lyons was speaking about. Lou talked about "finding" wallets, and Lyons said "I still can't find my wallet." Same verb -- "find." No theft.

Also the linked story said in its lead that Lyons was fired for making disparaging remarks "aimed at" Lou's "Hispanic heritage." Lou isn't Hispanic. What is to be the penalty for publicly claiming someone has "Hispanic heritage" when they don't? Seems to me to be a slur on persons of Spanish ancestry not to conduct the requisite research to discover the truth, no?
   188. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:28 PM (#2213836)
Then I read that a person had said about a Jew that "he never had a bar mitzvah, which is unfortunate because he didn't get the money," and I found no public outcry and no firing of the person and I went back to being confused.

My guess is that neither comment was offensive enough to get Lyons fired, but after the first comment re Green (and presumably many other idiotic comments -- like the one about the JORDY) he was on notice, and the Pinella thing was the straw that broke the camel's back, as someone else has noted. I don't know if I would have fired him for it, but the sequence of events seems logical.
   189. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:39 PM (#2213863)
The question I would ask of you all is, in the context of the broadcast, why would Lyons say that he did not want to sit next to Piniella?

Because Pinella was "hablaing Espanol" and Lyons doesn't understand Spanish.

Most of America -- including huge swaths of Fox's audience -- positively revels in lack of familiarity with languages other than English and cultures other than "American." The everyday American wouldn't have to think for more than a second to feel cut out of a conversation once that conversation turns to a tongue other than English, and to think that the speaker had committed some grave offense against social norms. Perhaps the classic of the genre is George W Bush taking offense (in practically the same way as Lyons) to an American NBC reporter addressing him in French at a Bush/Chirac press conference ... while in France.

Lyons had a ready audience for his juvenalia. Fox not only panders to that audience, but helped create it. Fox's hypocrisy surpasses Lyons's idiocy by leaps and bounds, and that's no easy chore.

Lyons's comments about Jews -- aimed directly at a known Jew -- were much, much more bigoted, though probably not as idiotic.
   190. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:45 PM (#2213874)
My guess is that neither comment was offensive enough to get Lyons fired, but after the first comment re Green (and presumably many other idiotic comments -- like the one about the JORDY) he was on notice, and the Pinella thing was the straw that broke the camel's back, as someone else has noted. I don't know if I would have fired him for it, but the sequence of events seems logical.

In what possible way were Lyons's comments about Green not fireable under the "brain-dead caribbean" standard? If religious stereotypes aimed at a particular member of the religion mixed in with commentary about said member's religious purity don't meet the standard, the standard's worthless. Assuming it truly is a standard, which many doubt ...
   191. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:51 PM (#2213885)
The question I would ask of you all is, in the context of the broadcast, why would Lyons say that he did not want to sit next to Piniella?

Because Pinella was "hablaing Espanol" and Lyons doesn't understand Spanish.

That is completely irrational, and until I hear Lyons say that was what he meant, I do not believe it. What is objectionable about sitting next to someone who speaks another language? Is it a communicable disease? Kevin? Any insights here?

The everyday American wouldn't have to think for more than a second to feel cut out of a conversation once that conversation turns to a tongue other than English, and to think that the speaker had committed some grave offense against social norms.

If this is Lyons' reasoning, he deserved to be fired.

On a slight tangent, I believe that Curt Flood spoke about Alvin Dark's racism as a manager of the Giants when he told his hispanic players that they couldn't speak spanish in the clubhouse. It was speculated that Dark was insecure about what the players were saying about him.

I just read an article where Felipe Alou defended Dark, saying that Dark was still his friend, and that Dark made everyone speak english for the sake of "team unity".
   192. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 16, 2006 at 04:57 PM (#2213897)
That is completely irrational, and until I hear Lyons say that was what he meant, I do not believe it. What is objectionable about sitting next to someone who speaks another language? Is it a communicable disease? Kevin? Any insights here?

I hope you understand that I agree with you. OF COURSE there's nothing objectionable about it.
   193. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:09 PM (#2213913)
I hope you understand that I agree with you. OF COURSE there's nothing objectionable about it.

I didn't think you didn't, necessarily. I just think that you're really stretching, here.
   194. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:11 PM (#2213917)
Also the linked story said in its lead that Lyons was fired for making disparaging remarks "aimed at" Lou's "Hispanic heritage." Lou isn't Hispanic. What is to be the penalty for publicly claiming someone has "Hispanic heritage" when they don't? Seems to me to be a slur on persons of Spanish ancestry not to conduct the requisite research to discover the truth, no?

Isn't he Cuban?


In what possible way were Lyons's comments about Green not fireable under the "brain-dead caribbean" standard? If religious stereotypes aimed at a particular member of the religion mixed in with commentary about said member's religious purity don't meet the standard, the standard's worthless. Assuming it truly is a standard, which many doubt ...

They probably were a fireable offense, but I assume Fox decided to give him another chance in the hope that it was a one-time slip.
   195. RichRifkin Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:16 PM (#2213928)
I just read an article where Felipe Alou defended Dark, saying that Dark was still his friend, and that Dark made everyone speak english for the sake of "team unity".

I just saw a documentary on PBS about Latin American players in the early integrated era, and in it Felipe Alou spoke at length about Dark's "no Spanish" rule. The fact is that Felipe and the other Latin players were very unhappy at that time about Dark, and remain so to this day, regardless of whether Felipe still feels amity for Alvin Dark. Felipe mentioned that Dark's rule upset him most when his two brothers were on the Giants, as Alvin prohibited them to speak to each other in the clubhouse or in the field in their native language. Alou added that what made this rule worse was that neither he nor his brethren spoke much English at that time, so being forced to not speak Spanish was more burdensome than it would be later when he became fluent.

Also regarding Dark, I found this nugget on Wikipedia:
In 1964 he became embroiled in controversy when he was quoted in Newsday as complaining about the number of black and Hispanic players on the team and saying, "They are just not able to perform up to the white player when it comes to mental alertness." He responded that he had been severely misquoted; Willie Mays, whom he had named as team captain, came to his defense and calmed the team, and Jackie Robinson further noted, "I have found Dark to be a gentleman and, above all, unbiased. Our relationship has not only been on the ballfield but off it." Dark survived the controversy, but was fired after the season when Giants owner Horace Stoneham learned of an extramarital affair.
   196. RichRifkin Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:21 PM (#2213932)
"They probably were a fireable offense, but I assume Fox decided to give him another chance in the hope that it was a one-time slip."

Would Lyon's comments about Green have been "a fireable offense" if Lyons were Jewish? Personally, I doubt it. And if it wouldn't have been a fireable offense if say, Tony Kornheiser had said it, it shouldn't be for Lyons IMHO.
   197. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:21 PM (#2213934)
just saw a documentary on PBS about Latin American players in the early integrated era, and in it Felipe Alou spoke at length about Dark's "no Spanish" rule. The fact is that Felipe and the other Latin players were very unhappy at that time about Dark, and remain so to this day, regardless of whether Felipe still feels amity for Alvin Dark.

The article I read was either in the Boston Globe or SI. I can't remember which, even though I read it fairly recently, and it was written recently...in the last 2 or 3 months, at most. I quoted Alou accurately.
   198. kthejoker Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:25 PM (#2213939)
"I still can't find my wallet."

Was the emphasis on the "still"? Was Lyons implying that he was still "searching" for that metaphorical wallet Piniella was talking about?

Somehow it just parses better when you read it that way. Especially the "still" - like Lyons knows he's lost "it" (the metaphorical wallet - luck? baseball talent? commentating talent?) and will probably never find it. It's practically self-deprecating that way. Knowing Lyons, that's a better way to read it.
   199. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:26 PM (#2213942)
It was SI.

By modern standards the statement was ludicrous, but looking at the Giants' roster of the 1960s, it was nothing short of dastardly, especially when it came to Alou, among the proudest men in the game.

Which is why it's surprising that, with 45 years of perspective, Alou not only fails to harbor a grudge, he also sees Dark in an entirely gracious light.

"Alvin Dark, who's the man who was accused of being a racist -- he's the one who integrated the clubhouse -- and that was before his ban on speaking Spanish," said Alou.

Dark's effort to get his team to communicate in a common tongue could be seen as an attempt to unify the group; his ordering the lockers of Latin and African-American players to be spaced evenly among those of the Caucasians left little to doubt.


Linky
   200. dugaton Posted: October 16, 2006 at 05:30 PM (#2213949)
To me, it's quite obvious who found the comments insensitive and racist, and it was neither the viewers at home or the politically-motivated suits upstairs. It was Lou Piniella.

So, your station is taking tons of heat for a stupid comment about a blind guy that Lyons made but you didn't realise how big a deal it would be in time to fire him. Then, one of the co-commentators (hypothetically) says 'I'm never going in the box with Lyons again', and makes Fox job easy.

Either that, or post 'blind-dude' incident, Fox have itchy trigger fingers.
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