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Max Kepler and the Cost of Silence

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#21 In My La-Z-boy

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:06 AM

There is no question this has exposed something deeply wrong in this police department. There were multiple upon multiple incidents prior with him - and for the other cops to stand still and silent - big personnel problems in this police force.

There is no question this has exposed the anarchists and race hustlers, who are using this awful police brutality incident to further their political agenda. 

It is racism - and it is politics. And it all belongs somewhere else outside this forum in my opinion. And I'll give Max the benefit of the doubt, as I'm sure Byron will.

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#22 LanceJS

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:18 AM

Another media source that just doesn’t understand that not all whites and police are racist, not all blacks are criminals and yes, it IS possible to support law enforcement while condemning the horrible actions of bad cops.  What’s next, the defense of the people who destroyed businesses that employed and in some cases, were owned by people of color, the very people these “protesters” supposedly were trying to help?  If, I want to get lectured about how evil white people and law enforcement professionals are, I can get that many other places, not a forum where I thought the topic was a baseball team.

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#23 mikelink45

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:20 AM

Thank you - we need strong statements and strong moral stands.

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#24 Aichiman

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:33 AM

What a pathetic piece. Keep your political opinions to yourself. The problem is not silence, it'staking advantage of your position on this website by using it as a bully pulpit to spew your views on what's wrong with America. I'd put your views at the top of the list. Shut up and stick to baseball.
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#25 Det95Twins

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:39 AM

I don’t think trying somebody by social media, hurling accusations and insults, vandalizing strangers’ property and telling people they have to do more is very helpful. I do my best to treat all people with respect. I don’t care about the color of a person’s skin and I don’t jump to conclusions based on race. I’d like to see a thorough and open investigation into George’s death and have people talk about how to improve race relations and have people listen to each other. I believe Kepler’s explanation and up until a couple of years ago I might have made the same innocent mistake. Kepler seems like a quiet, decent, non-controversial guy who never gets in trouble. Maybe we should give him and all other people the benefit of the doubt. We should stand up to injustice when we see it. We should stop the silly social media rants. We shouldn’t make blanket accusations about the police or races. We should treat people with respect. For those of you who say that supporting the police or waiting to judge until a thorough investigation is held, I can’t disagree with you more. Two or more wrongs don’t make a right. The protesting is absolutely spot on if done with some thought. Vandalizing sets us all back, none more so than the property owners whose lives are affected.
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#26 nicksaviking

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:41 AM

To everyone trying to blow this out of the water by crying politics, knock it off. Nick clearly spelled out that this was not about politics, it was about apathy toward civil rights equality, specifically what appeared to be apathy from Max Kepler. You can agree or disagree with Nick's take that Kepler was showing apathy, but unless you actually believe equality for all races should not be a priority, this is not a red vs. blue debate.

 

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#27 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:43 AM

To everyone trying to blow this out of the water by crying politics, knock it off. Nick clearly spelled out that this was not about politics, it was about apathy toward civil rights equality, specifically what appeared to be apathy from Max Kepler. You can agree or disagree with Nick's take that Kepler was showing apathy, but unless you actually believe equality for all races should not be a priority, this is not a red vs. blue debate.

The fact that so many make equality a partisan issue says some pretty terrible things about us as a society.
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#28 Teddy

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:49 AM

With all due respect, Nick, I appreciate your right to voice your opinion, but I agree with the commenters who posted their thoughts that this isn't the forum for political discussions. Stepping over that line is a good way to lose readership in something you and your partners have worked hard to build.

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#29 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:52 AM

With all due respect, Nick, I appreciate your right to voice your opinion, but I agree with the commenters who posted their thoughts that this isn't the forum for political discussions. Stepping over that line is a good way to lose readership in something you and your partners have worked hard to build.

Our city is literally burning. Some things are more important than readership and this article, while Nick’s idea and execution, was ultimately a group decision.
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#30 drivlikejehu

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:53 AM

 

Twins Daily “lets” Nick post this article because he’s an owner and all the owners stand united on this issue, which is a humanitarian issue that America has failed at for four centuries.

It doesn’t have to be political unless you make it political. I don’t see why facing the problem that we’ve failed black Americans can or should be a left/right issue unless you make it one.

 

Of course it's political. That's either a dishonest statement or an incredibly naive one.

 

If you simply said, George Floyd's death was tragic, that's not political. Anything else you say after that - we need to reform/abolish the police, America is a failure, etc., is political. Talking about "comfortable white people" and "systemic injustice" is political. It was notable that Nick had nothing to say about the wanton destruction caused by criminals in Minneapolis - is opposition to rioting "political"?

 

However, it is wrong to push a particular viewpoint and then say 'this isn't politics - this is basic humanity. You are evil if you don't see it exactly as I do.' This line is pushed for the sole reason of de-legitimizing other viewpoints. Nick of course is only parroting the line being put out by people like Cuomo; Nick himself added nothing to the discussion other than being 'bitterly disappointed' in one mid-level pro athlete.

 

People die every day, in a significant number of cases due to the actions of other people. That's been the case for the entirety of human existence. It's believed that deaths from violence are lower than at any previous time in history, but even so, they are too high.

 

Deaths from police brutality in the US are an extremely small portion of overall violent deaths. Attacking the police across the board for such incidents actually makes them more likely to occur in the first place, because fewer people will want to join, weakening the applicant pool, in addition to other factors that limit police effectiveness.

 

The Freddie Gray case in Baltimore was tragic. The response - a weakened police force - has resulted in scores of additional murders, if not hundreds. Do those people not count? They were overwhelmingly minorities, some of them children. Yet there is complete silence about them.

 

This selective outrage is morally indefensible, and 100% political. 

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#31 Ginsamax

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:55 AM

Like many of you, I read Twins Daily for its baseball content. However, I am very impressed and thankful that Nick Nelson posted this thoughtful article. For all of the commentators posting some version of "shut up and dribble," you need to realize that sports is not played in vacuum. The majority of professional athletes are people of color and are deeply affected by police brutality and white supremacy. White people (I am one) need to have empathy and try to understand the fear and rage that come with the real possibility of being murdered solely based upon your skin color. Having empathy is not (or should not be) political. Kepler's actions lacked this empathy and it is impossible to not to lose respect for him. I have never posted in the comments because they often devolve into hot take style negativity that I don't what to be a part of, however I felt it necessary to do so.

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#32 ashbury

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:57 AM

It's incredibly easy to click "Next Unread Topic" if a given article isn't to one's taste. I don't care much for ice hockey, but if Nick had written an article about Kent Hrbek's experience playing Bloomington Athletic Association hockey, I don't think I'd start threatening to take my reading time elsewhere.

 

Speaking as only one of the moderators, we keep "politics" (broadly construed) out of the normal baseball comment threads because there is no quicker way to drown out the topic than for someone to inject an irrelevant but explosive tangent. Here, the article itself concerns something that normally would be a tangent.

 

Putting aside my moderator role... I'm glad Nick said what he said. "Not into politics" is way too often the way someone says "I will not listen to anyone's grievances." The crocodile tears over the street violence rings hollow* when one pauses to recall that the nation's vice president made a trip to an NFL game for the express purpose of walking back out because some players chose to peacefully take a knee. And anyone who has kept their thoughts to themselves about George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Christian Cooper, Ahmaud Arbery, but then feels it necessary to speak up about the injustice of property damage, needs to rethink their priorities in this world. Finally, "Antifa, Antifa, Antifa," is starting to sound like a giant red herring to me - there are people on the other side from them who stand to gain more from fires being set.

 

* I run a side business called "Weak Tea To Hang Your Hat On". Metaphors custom-mixed to your specification!

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#33 sloopjont

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:57 AM

 

To everyone trying to blow this out of the water by crying politics, knock it off. Nick clearly spelled out that this was not about politics, it was about apathy toward civil rights equality, specifically what appeared to be apathy from Max Kepler. You can agree or disagree with Nick's take that Kepler was showing apathy, but unless you actually believe equality for all races should not be a priority, this is not a red vs. blue debate.

This statement is like a "when did you stop beating your wife" statement.It's a baited trap 

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#34 ToddlerHarmon

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:58 AM

Nick, thank you for saying something. This is not something that should be ignored. For my part, I was hoping to hear Twins Daily's take if only to get a clear recap of the events.

 

As for Kepler, I think we can ask that he educate himself, and reserve judgment until next time. I'm ok with athletes not jumping into political frays, but he has inadvertently done so. Now he has an opportunity to gain community support, and not be just a guy wearing our favorite uniform.

 

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#35 Jpete

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 07:59 AM

Nick, you're article almost seems designed to alienate people who disagree with you instead of bringing at least some of them closer to your view. 

 

For instance, you say it is not political but then quote a very liberal political journalist and brother of a very liberal Democrat Governor (if you are having trouble relating to my comment, maybe ask your reaction to an Ann Coulter quote even if you agreed with the quote). 

 

Further, you criticize Max for staying silent immediately after a quote where he condemns racism. He clearly was not silent, if you don't think he said enough, perhaps you should define how many words or how posts are required to pass your standards. 

 

I think about everyone was horrified by the police officer's actions. And I am greatly saddened by the targeting blacks face by police officers every day in this country. On many other topics related to the protest and riots and police in general we may disagree but I think most would say specifically for police brutality that we have to do better. I think there at least some solutions that the vast majority of people will agree with (such as repealing qualified immunity partially or fully).However to do that, we need to work harder to build bridges instead of pushing people away. 

 

Jeff

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#36 segagenesisgenius

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 08:02 AM

I am beyond uncomfortable with the concept of shaming and calling out specific individual people for what they do not want to do based nearly exclusively on the color of their skin. 

 

Here is the problem; you are not calling out people generally, you are calling out one person specifically. You mention Kepler a dozen times in this article, and leave no doubt about how you feel about him; rather, the reader knows that you want to publicly shame him for being a bad person in this regard.As you state it, there is no moral ambiguity here.

 

On top of that, you are not calling him out for what he did do.In fact, you largely excused him for what he did do (the tweet with the blue lives matter facemask).Rather, you shamed him repeatedly in this article for what he did NOT do.

 

You only said this because of Kepler's race.You did not shame Sano for not saying anything (and he has not).They are both young budding players from a different country.They both have a large audience both home and abroad, and are both wealthy and successful.The only difference is that one is white.You want Kepler to speak because he is white.You (seemingly) could care less whether or not Sano does because he is not.You are publicly calling out a person for what they did(n't do) for the apparent sole reason of his race.

 

You did not do this because Kepler regularly is in this domain of politics, race relations, or the like, such that his sudden silence might function as disapproval or approval of what others were saying.This could not be further from what Kepler's domain is.This is not equivalent to if the MLB didn't speak on this (as MLB deals with race relations).This is not equivalent to a politician not dealing with this (as politicians deal with race relations).This is not even the same as if Baldelli wasn't speaking on this (as Rocco is, in large part, paid to be a spokesperson for the team, and was hired for his ability to reach across a cultural divide).Kepler was and is employed because of his ability to hit and catch baseballs.This has nothing to do with what Kepler personally or professionally does.You are only shaming him for what he is not doing because of the color of his skin.

 

People have all sorts of reasons for not doing things.I know people that don't like talking about sexual assault because they have been sexually assaulted.I know people that don't want to talk about anything divisive because they want to be a bastion of emotional stability, and don't want people to have literally no place to look in this day and age that does not stress them out and make them depressed and unhealthy.I also know that many athletes that don't want to say anything political as they don't feel informed about the geopolitical landscape of a foreign country and don't want to misstep in an accidental way and offend people who like them or the team.Personally, I do not think that any of these things are a big enough moral failing that they warrant implying that someone is being a bad human for withholding their comments accordingly.Apparently we disagree on this.

 

In a philosophical sense, I agree that all humans should pay attention to the human plights around them, and I also agree that all of us should do this for each of those around us, not only for those that look like us and think like us but also for those that do not look like us and do not think like us.

 

But I can think of few slopes more slippery than implying that an individual person is being a bad person based on the color of their skin and what they do not feel comfortable doing.Call for people generally to speak out based on what their human morals feel, rather than turning the other way if their internal moral compass is telling them something.That's fine and good. However, the minute that we try to force a group of people do what the herd morality wants them to do because of a characteristic of how that person was born (and imply that any person is a lesser and/or worse human if they do not actively do the thing that the herd demands) is the minute that I feel fantastically uncomfortable with the direction in which we are heading. 

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#37 Twins1964

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 08:05 AM

Nick deserves to be called out. He obviously thinks he has life all figured out for not only himself but for everyone else too. Typical leftist. Hopefully he stops using his forum for anything other than baseball. Then readers can ascertain if he has anything interesting or relevant to say. I doubt it because that would take focus on his part.

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#38 saviking

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 08:06 AM

Nick, would you like to send you post to the family's of small business owners that have lost their life's savings? Kep was right as 0ver 99 percent of police officers are decent people. To attack the whole for the actions of few is about as ignorant as it gets. I'm sure everyone on this board respects the rights for peaceful protest and yes, I can understand them wanting the police officers are punished. What's crazy is it doesn't matter who you talk to in the country everyone agree's with the protestors that it was a travesty. But now, for you not to call out the organized group of thugs that have come into you city with the sole purpose of social unrest is irresponsible. 

 

I'd highly suggest keeping you political views to yourself or you are going to burn down this valued site and that would be a shame.

 

Sincerely, Craig

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#39 nicksaviking

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 08:09 AM

 

This statement is like a "when did you stop beating your wife" statement.It's a baited trap 

 

Only if you're suggesting that many people believe that George Floyd's death was an acceptable price to pay to maintain the status quo. In which case people need to own that position instead of trying deflect the conversation to property damage.

 

I really don't believe that there is a significant part of the population that thinks this was acceptable, but I am starting to believe there is a significant part of the population that thinks it was unacceptable but are unwilling to make the sacrifices needed to change it.

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#40 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 01 June 2020 - 08:14 AM

To say I’m disappointed by these comments is a massive understatement.

Many of you are showing why Nick needed to write this article.
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