Sunday, April 15, 2012

Are Journalists Perpetuating the Bigotry?

JAPANESE BASEBALL SENSATION Yu Darvish is now playing with the Texas Rangers. He was roughed up a bit during the first inning of his MLB debut last week but he came back to earn the win against the Mariners.

The game was somewhat marred by a collection of racist events.

First, the Rangers commissioned a new hot dog in Darvish's honor - the Yu Dog. It comes with a fortune cookie.

Then, a TV analyst called a hit by Ichiro a "chinker."

Finally, there were these, er, fans in the above image.

What should the journalists do with these instances? Should they run a story and photos of the events? Or, by highlighting the ignorance of a few small-minded folks, are the journalists in fact perpetuating/ spurring on the racism?

Keep in mind that we are in a post-Jeremy Lin era, when an ESPN writer was fired after crafting a headline that read "Chink in the Armor" after Lin and the Knicks lost a game.

Check out this SNL spoof of the Jeremy Lin excitement, and the racism that followed in the mainstream media.

Photo by US PRESSWIRE via Larry Brown Sports.


Chase Senior said...

Because Yu Darvish was such a big acquisition for a team that has made it to the World Series in back to back years and lost their top pitcher, C.J Wilson to free agency the signing of Yu Darvish is a big deal for the Texas Rangers organization. We have seen in past years with previous players that have come overseas that it is a tough transition moving into Major League Baseball. Although the announcers comments were a little out of context I don't see the problem with naming a hot dog after Darvish. You can travel to stadiums around the country and there are always foods named after notable athletes. The only problem with the "Yu Dog" is that it comes with a fortune cookie. Yes, it's a little bit racial but fortune cookies are very common and their selling the Yu Dog to honor Darvish and give him some recognition among the fan base. The sign isn't a problem one bit in my eyes because signs are used world wide with spelling transformations in order to fit a players name, etc. The sign is just showing love towards Yu Darvish. When you get paid a mega-deal, fans recognize that and will honor you unless your a complete bust.

Jake DiLanzo - JDiLLA said...

I don't really see the big deal in this situation over the name. It's just a name. People are going to love or hate anything you do that sparks a controversy. Regardless, business and business and no one can change that.

Bob Stewart said...

I am in favor of highlighting the ignorance of people. The ensuing discussion is how we all learn what offends and hurts others. Texas is not an area with a strong Asian population historically, although that has been changing recently. The lack of interaction can lead to a lack of sensitivity. I am not trying to say these people are not total idiots, they may be, but perhaps they could learn a thing or two about other cultures by being called on the carpet publicly.

Jon DiMuzio said...

I personally think that acts like these are wrong, but are really unavoidable. There was a lot of controversy when Jeremy Lin came to the scene, and it would not be good if it all came back. There were some people fired because of racist comments and rightfully so. But I do not think it can be avoided because in the first amendment we get a freedom of speech. No matter how racist a person can say whatever they want for the most part. As much as it would be good to see penalties for acts such as this sign, I do not see it happening anytime soon