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Hank Aaron gets hate mail

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#1 gunnarthor

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 08:26 AM

Not really surprising but certainly depressing:

http://www.usatoday....exists/7723045/

#2 drivlikejehu

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 08:49 AM

Well he did basically say opponents of President Obama are gussied-up Klan members. That's an incredibly ignorant and inflammatory statement, so while it doesn't justify hate mail, it certainly is quite a different thing altogether from Jackie Robinson being abused for just playing baseball.

#3 jokin

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:32 AM

Uh, covered up racism is, ironically, blatant in our society. To deny that some significant portion of the opposition this President is simply racism seems preposterous. That attitude still makes up much of that party's "base."


Data, please.

#4 gil4

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:38 AM

Uh, covered up racism is, ironically, blatant in our society. To deny that some significant portion of the opposition this President is simply racism seems preposterous. That attitude still makes up much of that party's "base."


Tired of the damned lying slander, and that's what this comes off as.

Edited by gil4, 17 April 2014 - 05:39 PM.
Sorry I let my anger speak a bit too loudly.


#5 Intramural Legend

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:40 AM

Uh, covered up racism is, ironically, blatant in our society. To deny that some significant portion of the opposition this President is simply racism seems preposterous. That attitude still makes up much of that party's "base."


This thread is certainly heading in a poor direction. I will say, I completely disagree with the bolded part of your assertion

Edited by Intramural Legend, 16 April 2014 - 09:44 AM.


#6 nicksaviking

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:42 AM

Well he did basically say opponents of President Obama are gussied-up Klan members. That's an incredibly ignorant and inflammatory statement, so while it doesn't justify hate mail, it certainly is quite a different thing altogether from Jackie Robinson being abused for just playing baseball.


They must have edited that part out of my copy. This is the quote in my version:

"We can talk about baseball. Talk about politics. Sure, this country has a black president, but when you look at a black president, President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he's treated. We have moved in the right direction, and there have been improvements, but we still have a long ways to go.

#7 nicksaviking

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:44 AM

Tired of the damned lying slander, and that's what this is. You're full of it.


So you're going to call Shane out for "slander" but not the post prior? OK.


Well he did basically say opponents of President Obama are gussied-up Klan members. That's an incredibly ignorant and inflammatory statement, so while it doesn't justify hate mail, it certainly is quite a different thing altogether from Jackie Robinson being abused for just playing baseball.


#8 drivlikejehu

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:45 AM

Uh, covered up racism is, ironically, blatant in our society. To deny that some significant portion of the opposition this President is simply racism seems preposterous. That attitude still makes up much of that party's "base."


Brilliant point. That explains why Republicans so loved Bill Clinton, a white southerner.

#9 gil4

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:52 AM

So you're going to call Shane out for "slander" but not the post prior? OK.



I agree completgely with the post above. You had a little selective editing when you posted the Aaron quote (the bold part is what you left out):

"We can talk about baseball. Talk about politics. Sure, this country has a black president, but when you look at a black president, President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he's treated. We have moved in the right direction, and there have been improvements, but we still have a long ways to go.
"The bigger difference is back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts."


That sounds to me like he said opponents of President Obama are gussied-up Klan members.

#10 Shane Wahl

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:55 AM

Good lord. Do you guys ever talk to some of these people who so oppose Obama? I didn't say anything about a "majority" or anything. There is a significant portion of that opposition that is based on it. What percentage, for instance, believes that he was born in Kenya, after all? You can call it "slander" all you want.

#11 ashburyjohn

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:55 AM

Good morning.

I'm going to move this to the sports bar section of the forums, where political discussion is more appropriate. The connection to "More Baseball" is looking pretty tangential after the starting tie to Aaron.

Moderator's note: Keep it civil, leave out the personal accusations, or infractions will be assessed and bans handed out as a result.

Edited by ashburyjohn, 16 April 2014 - 10:04 AM.
Bolded in case the message is too subtle for some


#12 Intramural Legend

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 09:57 AM

Good lord. Do you guys ever talk to some of these people who so oppose Obama? I didn't say anything about a "majority" or anything. There is a significant portion of that opposition that is based on it. What percentage, for instance, believes that he was born in Kenya, after all? You can call it "slander" all you want.


I think there is a loud minority on both sides that are given to much of a voice. You can completely disagree with his fiscal policies, and still not be bigot

#13 Shane Wahl

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:02 AM

I think there is a loud minority on both sides that are given to much of a voice. You can completely disagree with his fiscal policies, and still not be bigot


Yes, clearly. I think some logic lapses are going on here in general. In no way, shape, or form did I say "opposition to Obama is simply racism."

#14 Shane Wahl

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:03 AM

For the record, I generally "oppose" Obama, for my own reasons (not conservative ones).

#15 gunnarthor

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:17 AM

Data, please.


That there is covered up racism in our society? Tons of information on it.

For instance, cops see black kids as older than they are. Our education system punishes minority kids at a much higher rate than white kids, even in pre-school programs. Our justice system punishes minorities more often and harder than whites. This is a nice article by ACLU of MN board member Bill Pentalovch on that problem in MPLS.

And this is a nice opinion piece addressing the idea that we should ignore racism now because it's not that bad.

#16 jokin

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:19 AM

That there is covered up racism in our society? Tons of information on it.

For instance, cops see black kids as older than they are. Our education system punishes minority kids at a much higher rate than white kids, even in pre-school programs. Our justice system punishes minorities more often and harder than whites. This is a nice article by ACLU of MN board member Bill Pentalovch on that problem in MPLS.

And this is a nice opinion piece addressing the idea that we should ignore racism now because it's not that bad.


You're answering questions I didn't ask. And I asked Shane, specifically on what he stated.

#17 jokin

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:21 AM

Good lord. Do you guys ever talk to some of these people who so oppose Obama? I didn't say anything about a "majority" or anything. There is a significant portion of that opposition that is based on it. What percentage, for instance, believes that he was born in Kenya, after all? You can call it "slander" all you want.


All well and true, but data would be helpful to gauge the veracity of such a broad opening statement that you made.

#18 strumdatjag

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:23 AM

So, some of you must think that most Republicans actually support a government takeover of the health care system, decimating our military, raising taxes, and increasing government spending. You must think that they really don't believe in limited government and a strong defense. And all those prolifers? They actually are prochoice, and closet members of Greenpeace, the ACLU and PETA. They are just pretending to be devout Christians. Yes, you've figured out the reason for this GOP ruse: The Republicans just won't admit that they are really European-style liberals, because they are racist and the President is black - otherwise everyone would agree with the agenda of the Democrat Party. I guess I must be one of those racist hypocrites, too. So, I'm seeing the light and admitting that I'm a closet liberal led to conservatism solely by my evil racist thoughts. I'm deleting Drudge from my Favorites and adding the DailyKos. By the way, where do I go to join the protests of the Keystone Pipeline and to join the movement to ban the word "Bossy!" and 32 Ounce Pops (no Soda in Minnesota!).


#19 TheLeviathan

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:26 AM

Aaron is absolutely right that racism still exists on many levels in our society and we have a long way to go. And nothing he said justified the letters he got.

But the implication that Republican blocks of Democrat policies are evidence of that existing racism is where his argument went off the tracks. If that's a factor at all (and I'm not sure how you could assert such a thing with anything more than wild speculation) it pales in comparison to the fact the two parties are sniping at each other like this on all levels of government all over the country with leaders that are largely still white.

(There in demographic representation may have been a better place to start rather than that limp argument)

#20 strumdatjag

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:29 AM

The Baseball Post: I think Hank and the rest of you have it all wrong. Those letters weren't sent by racists. They all have BALCO for the return address. The letter writers are steroid users and providers who can't stand the fact that many of us still believe the "real" homerun records are held by Hammerin' Hank and Roger Maris. We'll listen to some who argue for Babe Ruth, based on the shorter seasons in his day. But Hank and Roger still win. I guess that makes me half-racist (or one-quarter depending on your math), because Barry Bonds is black (unless the 'roids changed that too). By the way, I'd like to know what percentage of Bonds' hate mail is racist and what percentage is steroidist.

#21 gunnarthor

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:41 AM

This thread went to hell.

#22 strumdatjag

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 10:52 AM

I thought my sarcastic spin on Hank receiving hate-mail from Steroidists boosted the exchange slightly at least!

#23 gil4

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 11:14 AM

That there is covered up racism in our society? Tons of information on it.

For instance, cops see black kids as older than they are. Our education system punishes minority kids at a much higher rate than white kids, even in pre-school programs. Our justice system punishes minorities more often and harder than whites.


Those could all be true and still not indicate racism. Are there physiological difference that make it more difficult to tell ages? Haircuts? Clothing? Facial hair? Tatoos? Are there cultural differences that can result in higher rates of misbehavior? Single-parent? Employment? Media choices (TV/movies/music)? Attitudes taught in the home about authority?

#24 deanlambrecht

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 11:42 AM

Well he did basically say opponents of President Obama are gussied-up Klan members. That's an incredibly ignorant and inflammatory statement, so while it doesn't justify hate mail, it certainly is quite a different thing altogether from Jackie Robinson being abused for just playing baseball.


No, that's not what he said. The article stated this quite plainly:

[COLOR=#333333][FONT=arial]Never in our 50-minute conversation did Aaron suggest anyone critical of President Obama is racist. Never did he compare the Republican Party to the Ku Klux Klan.
[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#333333][FONT=arial]
Simply, Aaron stated that we are fooling ourselves if we don't believe racism exists in our country. It's simply camouflaged now. And, yes, he feels sorry for his good friend, President Obama, and the frustrations he endures.

[/FONT][/COLOR]

http://www.usatoday....exists/7723045/

Edited by deanlambrecht, 16 April 2014 - 11:49 AM.
clarity


#25 twinsnorth49

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 11:43 AM

Well, good to see things are staying rational and tolerant here...

Edited by twinsnorth49, 16 April 2014 - 11:46 AM.


#26 PseudoSABR

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 11:56 AM

Those could all be true and still not indicate racism. Are there physiological difference that make it more difficult to tell ages? Haircuts? Clothing? Facial hair? Tatoos? Are there cultural differences that can result in higher rates of misbehavior? Single-parent? Employment? Media choices (TV/movies/music)? Attitudes taught in the home about authority?

Honestly this list (of alternative explanations) is full of latent racist stereotypes. Haircuts? Tattoos? Attitudes in the home? Makes my stomach churn. If you can't connect systemic racism, poverty and poor upbringing, no one will connect the dots for you. Does it really matter if it's skin color or cultural iconography that leads to mistreatment?

No one is suggesting that any opposition to Obama (or any kinship to Republican party) is based in any part in racism. That said, however small the portion of actual racists (or latent racists) is, it is significant. We've had political candidates send out flyers with Obama depicted as a monkey or in African regalia etc, etc. Clearly these politicians are capitalizing on something within their base, however unsavory. For Republicans to succeed locally (and nationally), they will continue to curry the racist vote; in some sense, they'd be stupid not to.

Modern racism largely exists not as an active hating process, but rather as an unconscious set of assumptions and social negligences. If we're not willing to acknowledge the existence of such racism, we're part of the problem.

Edited by PseudoSABR, 16 April 2014 - 12:40 PM.


#27 gunnarthor

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 12:36 PM

Those could all be true and still not indicate racism. Are there physiological difference that make it more difficult to tell ages? Haircuts? Clothing? Facial hair? Tatoos? Are there cultural differences that can result in higher rates of misbehavior? Single-parent? Employment? Media choices (TV/movies/music)? Attitudes taught in the home about authority?


I was going to go into more in-depth here but it really isn't necessary and this thread is gone. Most of the articles I linked reference some of the things you raise. Sociologists have known for years that, even taking into account variables like economics and upbringing, minorities are still more likely to be targeted by police than whites.

#28 Mr. Brooks

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 01:18 PM

So, some of you must think that most Republicans actually support a government takeover of the health care system, decimating our military, raising taxes, and increasing government spending. You must think that they really don't believe in limited government and a strong defense. And all those prolifers? They actually are prochoice, and closet members of Greenpeace, the ACLU and PETA. They are just pretending to be devout Christians. Yes, you've figured out the reason for this GOP ruse: The Republicans just won't admit that they are really European-style liberals, because they are racist and the President is black - otherwise everyone would agree with the agenda of the Democrat Party. I guess I must be one of those racist hypocrites, too. So, I'm seeing the light and admitting that I'm a closet liberal led to conservatism solely by my evil racist thoughts. I'm deleting Drudge from my Favorites and adding the DailyKos. By the way, where do I go to join the protests of the Keystone Pipeline and to join the movement to ban the word "Bossy!" and 32 Ounce Pops (no Soda in Minnesota!).


I guess I'd have to see an explanation of how our military is being "decimated".
Keep in mind this graph represents constant 2013 dollars, so even the post sequester purple levels are higher than anytime in recent history except at the peaks of the Korea, Vietnam, and cold wars.
Plus, the impending military cuts are due to the Budget Control Act of 2011, which a Republican bill, so I'm having a hard time seeing why that is being pinned on Obama.

Posted Image

#29 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 02:06 PM

I'm not even sure where to begin with the response. The thing I really try to wrap my head around is whether society is being lazy when it attributes issues to racism when there could be other factors. I cannot help but think that to boil it down to racism and latent racism is trying to put a nice generic label on a problem that is far more complex than that... and quite honestly I can see how that can be offensive. Case in point, blacks and crime. When this whole thing gets debated people talk about statistics... Yet I keep coming back to poverty, b/c to me, this is linked, and probably a much bigger explanation to the statistics than simply racism.

Is it that blacks are being targeted b/c of their skin color or is it that they are targeted because they make up a disproportionately high percentage of people living below the poverty line? Those that I've met who are middle and upper middle class will tell you that racism exists, but at least in my small sample size circle of friends, it doesn't seem to be nearly as bad as one would think... and they certainly don't get hung up on it...

Does racism exist? Absolutely, and quite honestly it will always exist. We live in a country where people are free to be racist, whether or not you or I approve of it. But simply playing the racism card tends to exacerbate the problem and excite anger. It tends to mobilize... and sadly I think that's exactly what the political parties want.... Meanwhile, nothing is done on either side of the aisle to alleviate a system that stacks the deck against the poor and middle class.

#30 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 02:08 PM

Should note from a moderator standpoint, we do appreciate the attempts to take this back to civility. I should note that the thread was already reported. This can be a great political discussion, let's just be civil about it.

thanks.