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Slovakia Gets It Right, Can MLB, NBA, NFL, NHL et al Ever Get It Right?

It can be simple: Racism is wrong. Racism in any and all forms will not be acceptable. Racism will not be tolerated. Ever. Period. Slovakia gets it right.

Teams, players, Commissioners, families, owners, coaches, staff, broadcasters, fans–how can you keep looking for justifications for your cowardace? Silence condones the status quo. Speak up. Make the changes, do the right thing, not because you are somehow giving in, somehow doing what “they” say to do, or “they” say not to do but because it is the decent, human, respectful, honorable and right thing to take actioin. Fire racism. Change the names, logos, mascots and all representations that are racist  and associated with any of the teams. Change the owners when necessary. 

Mr. Larry Dolan, Mr. Paul Dolan, Mr. Mark Shapiro–can you give one legitimate reason not to change the Cleveland team name and logo–other than  the unbelievably weak “tradition” or perhaps “profits”, or perhaps you personally each “don’t see anything wrong with it” or your own individual and maybe joint fear of public or even private social reaction? Really? It is time for a mirror check–you, in your own mirror and the mirror of each of your consciences. 

Tell me, tell the world, tell your children and grandchildren that for the sake of pride, ego, sheer stubbornness you stood down everyone and “did it your way”–do you each really think the world is going to honor that choice and your following generations will be pleased that they have to answer for your intransience, that they have to find the courage you lack to do what you failed to do? It is not the 19th century, the 20th century or even the first decade of the 21st century. Your actions in 2014 are indefensible. The world has, in fact, changed.

It is simple: do the right thing and stop profiting from the name of a race of people(the reasoning behind the name is described elsewhere in this blog and from its origins until today it is wrong, factually, ethically and morally) and a demeaning, degrading and insulting racist caricature. Do not look to find apologists, do not look to poll a committee or a community or a board of directors. Do not look to clergy, academia or marketers for quidance. The clergy are occupied elweshere with their own faiulres and issues, academia is facing the digital evolution in education and marketers will do as you ask since you employ them.

For once take the lead, open a discussion with those of us who have pressed this issue forward for years and start the conversation not with a question as to how you can profit from the change but rather how you can do the change of both name and logo in a way that gives the change truth, respect and dignity for all involved.

I have asked this of you before and here I ask yet again: begin the conversation with those of us formally involved, now.

That question about how to increase profits and the change–check the transcripts from the deposition I personally participated in during the OCRC filing against Gateway and the team, your team–your lawyers asked it of me, just before we adjourned and the transcriptionist should have had it on the record. I had ideas and a plan then and still do have ideas as to how the change can be profitable today. However, I deferred, very deliberately on the answer, as I will here. That is a conversation for an entirely different setting but as businessmen I would certainly think you also have ideas on the subject. The courage to tackle the issue? That I have not yet seen, anywhere, ever, at all.

From Slovakia:

“One of the faces of the public-service RTVS sports desk, Kristína Kormúthová, was sacked after she posted a controversial comment on her Facebook profile on May 16. Kormúthová wrote on Facebook that a man who, according to her, tried to steal the rain gutter from her house at night was “a prematurely born, stinky gypsy” and asked why “us hunters” cannot shoot such people like animals. She concluded, “And let anyone dare call me a racist!””  She is now fired, because of the statement. More on the link above.

That is leadership and integrity in action. Can we have it here in American sports, in the National Pastime?

The NBA Has Done a Good Thing, MBL, Your Turn Is Now

The NBA Has Done a Good Thing, MBL, Your Turn Is Now

Congratulations to the NBA, Commissioner Silver, Kevin Johnson, Mayor of Sacremento, Eric Garcetti, Mayor of LA and the entire Clipper’s organization for banning, judging and condeming team owner Donald Sterling for his admitted racist comments. The maximum allowable punishments are a god and strong first step. Yet selling his team at a massive profit can still leave Sterling laughing all the way to the bank. The game and the country needs a better outcome. It is about America.

Adam Silver

MBL are you listening? Commissioner Selig, team owners Larry Dolan, family, staff and management, Mayor Jackson, Council President Kelley: in Cleveland you are all, each and every one of you, supporting a racist team with a racist logo, officially.

As I have said before, I am willing to sit at a table with you for a conversation around steps to build change and move away from prejudice, hatred, bigotry into a better future.

Question Of The Day

If a white businessman or businesswoman started a business can called it “N***…s Are Great” and used a silly cartoon person as the logo while claiming to honor people of color because of the “Great” in the name do you thinnk that would be OK? If so why? If not, why not?

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Dolan family, this is essentially what you are doing with the Cleveland Indians and Chief Wahoo. I am saying this as an American woman, an active member of my church and a mother. This is about all of us and basic human decency and respect, by everyone for everyone. The basic respect of one human being for another is the foundation of a decent society and a good country.

Mr. Larry and Mr. Paul Dolan it is for you to look in the mirror and at each other and conside, for yourselves, your team, your community and your families across the generations: are you part of what is a good future for America or are you part of the problem? I ask the same question for all team owners, players, staff and the MLB organization itself.

 

Link

Only 1 Part Missing

Generally a good review of the history of the name and logo in Cleveland. One important part is missing–the 1999 lawsuit filed with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission against the Cleveland Municipal Stadium Corporation and the team, as well as prior lawsuits. What happened with the last lawsuit?

I know because I was a party to that filing. We did expect a negative ruling and received one. The overall legal enviroment and a few other cases led us to decide to find other ways to bring about the change. 

Now, with social media, increasing international play by the MLB and Cleveland getting attention and focus on this issue it is time for even the Dolan family and Mr. Larry Dolan to step up to the plate and take a really good swing at revamping the entire team identity. If he does not have the heart for the good of the game he needs to find someone who does.                             cover-1.jpg