August 01, 2007
The Curse Of Shawn Green?
Here's something on why the Bleacher Creatures were told to keep it down at the Stadium - from Bostonsucks.net -
For the past few weeks Yankee Stadium security has banned all insulting or derogatory chanting from the bleachers. The banning spawned from an incident when the Yankees were playing the Mets and someone made an anti-Semitic remark to the Mets Jewish right fielder, Shawn Green. A letter was sent to the Yankees and thus the end of ’fun’ in the bleachers.
I haven't found anything that would back up this suggestion. But, if true, given all the things that have been said to players, etc., from those in the bleachers, through the years, I'm surprised that it took someone this long to write a letter. Then again, maybe letters have been sent in the past and this one was the one that the Yankees decided to take action on? It's one of those things that we'll probably never know...for sure.
Posted by Steve Lombardi at August 1, 2007 12:55 PM
I've heard that the letter in question has spawned the ban a well. The ironic thing is the letter-writer (who's a regular) doesn't have a problem with the "Box Seats Suck" stuff, just the racist and anti-Semitic stuff. I doubt this was the first complaint that the Yankees have received. But I think they saw it as an opportunity to finally "clean up" the bleachers before the move across the street.
Posted by: Jen at August 1, 2007 01:31 PM
I've never been a huge advocate of imposing rules that are virtually impossible to enforce on a consistent basis, as it's extremely difficult to police chants and cheers among pockets of fans within the context of a loud, 50,000+ seat stadium.
With that said, I don't understand why people need to sling racial, ethnic, or sexual epithets at others in order for them to enjoy a freaking baseball game. And don't tell me it's "part of the bleacher experience - it's just how things are there." Hate speech is repugnant, and it's reprehensible that so many adults haven't learned how to regulate their own behavior in a public arena.
Finally, the only issue I have with the "Sox Suck" chant is its egregious unoriginality. There's really nothing humorous, insulting, or ironic about it; and it sort of rings hollow when the team you're chanting it about is in first place.
~~~But I think they saw it as an opportunity to finally "clean up" the bleachers before the move across the street.~~~
If this old report is true,
and, if the Yanks increase ticket prices in 2009 to 40-50% above what it is now, I suspect that will clean-up the bleachers by itself.
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 1, 2007 01:42 PM
//With that said, I don't understand why people need to sling racial, ethnic, or sexual epithets at others in order for them to enjoy a freaking baseball game. And don't tell me it's "part of the bleacher experience - it's just how things are there." //
I honestly don't remember any ethnic slur directed towards Shawn Green. Maybe there was a "Putz" chant (which can hardly be considered an ethnic slur), but it was a while ago, I really don't remember. There may have been some heckling by individuals, but please don't lump an entire group in with what a few people may do or say.
The letter that allegedly started it all has less to do with chants about Shawn Green and more about a personal issue which I'm not about to get into here lest I get any details wrong. I don't want to perpetuate any rumors.
Steve, while I'm sure there will be increases, to go from $10 to $24 seems a bit of a stretch.
Posted by: Jen at August 1, 2007 02:37 PM
~~~Steve, while I'm sure there will be increases, to go from $10 to $24 seems a bit of a stretch.~~~
Supply and demand, my friend, supply and demand...I'm sure the Yankees are going to jack them up like no one can imagine now.
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 1, 2007 02:58 PM
The ironic thing is the letter-writer (who's a regular) doesn't have a problem with the "Box Seats Suck" stuff, just the racist and anti-Semitic stuff. I doubt this was the first complaint that the Yankees have received.
I sat in the bleachers in the early-mid 90's and I honestly cannot remember any racist or anti semitic chants/remarks.
I do agree that this couldn't have been the first time the Yanks fielded complaints from Section 39 behavior.
Sorry if I'm not all doom and gloom about it Steve. I prefer to wait and see what happens first. I mean, no sense worryin' about things you can't control, right?
Posted by: Jen at August 1, 2007 03:22 PM
I was at one game with a friend in the RF bleachers, probably 1989-90 and this white chick was having an argument with her black boyfriend. A bunch of folk (of different hues) were chanting "Whitey takes it up the a___" to the tune of Camptown Races. I think it was more of a "we don't like this chick" thing, and not racial. It may have been mini bat day, as there were a lot of mini bats in the bleachers.
"but please don't lump an entire group in with what a few people may do or say."
I didn't. I said "people," not "all people," not "all those who sit in the bleachers," not even "most people."
I've been to the stadium many times, but this year I got to sit in the bleachers for the first time ever. I thought it was a fun experience, there are some pretty crazy things said there but it's all in fun.
I find the bleacher area to be quite organic. If you can't take the heat, then get out of the kitchen.
I don't really care for racial epithets, but I've never been mad when someone has ever called me one - either in jest or in their ignorance.
If you aren't offended by the person next to you, then you don't live in a free society. Yankee stadium bleachers is just a microcosm of our society.
In Fenway they wear shirts that say, "Jeter has AIDS". What's worse, calling someone a racial slur or seeing a shirt that says someone has AIDS when you've had someone in your family affected by the disease? I find the latter to be something that would bug me more, but I also know I can't change the world.
I wouldn't say a racial slur (unless it's part of a good joke, hey those are good too), I wouldn't wear a shirt that says "F- You", and I definitely wouldn't wear a shirt that says someone has a deadly disease.
Sticks and stones....
You can take away slurs and insults when you take away the "Jeter Sucks Arod" and the "Jeter/Arod Swallows" shirts (in plain view of the children, mind you) from the fans at Fenway.