Racist is banned from baseball park for life

After the uproar this week when a player for the Baltimore Orioles reported he was the target of racist epithets at Boston’s Fenway Park, some fans gave Adam Jones a standing ovation the next night.

Heartwarming stuff. Everything cool now? Nope.You can’t clap racism away.

There were a fair number of fans who sat with their arms folded, however. And the typical and insufferable white sportstalk radio bro’s were questioning whether the incident happened at all. And former Red Sox star Curt Schilling said Jones was “creating a situation” by speaking out against racism.

This week, Boston has been the lab rat for how racism flourishes from one end of the country to the other.

What nobody noticed the night of the feel-good moment was that before the game, a woman from Kenya sang the National Anthem.

Calvin Hennick couldn’t help but notice. Because he was sitting with his 6-year-old son when the racism started.

Hennick did what too few people do. He fought back. He told an usher about the racist.

“Yes, it was a racial comment,” Red Sox club President Sam Kennedy said, according to the team. “It was a racial comment used to describe the national anthem that was taking place, the performance of the national anthem. It was sickening to hear.”

The racist has been banned from Fenway Park. For life.

“I want to thank the fan who raised this issue, who did exactly what we asked the fans to do yesterday while all this was going on,” Kennedy said. “As soon as they felt uncomfortable, and they heard inappropriate and offensive language, they went right to an usher, and to our security, Boston police, and this issue was dealt with swiftly and effectively by our team here.

“And I’m really proud of that. And I’m really grateful to the fan who dealt with this issue exactly as you would want them to. And hopefully this is a step forward, and in a crazy way, maybe something very positive can come of this and we can continue this conversation in baseball and in society.”

“This makes you wonder how many people are thinking [racist thoughts] and not saying it,” Hennick tells the Boston Globe. “People are feeling very comfortable with bigotry that we haven’t seen in a long time.”

When he posted his story on Facebook and Twitter, commenters said the incident never happened.

  • jon

    “And I stand by it!”
    denied 3 times

    I shouldn’t be surprised that some one making racist comments would lack the integrity to actually stand by a statement that they made… but still… if you are ashamed of racist comments when there are authority figures present, why bother with the effort to make racist comments at all?

  • Rob
  • Al

    Good riddance.

  • Ben

    I’m possibly going to be schooled now for my comment and I’m definitely not saying that the racist comment didn’t happen, but was Calvin the only one who reported the comment? I just wonder what could keep someone from reporting me for making a racist comment that I didn’t actually make and then get banned for life from something I enjoy. I read Calvin’s post and I see he asked the man to repeat himself, so it wasn’t a situation where he may have misunderstood what was said, but that could easily happen too.

    • How many interpretations can there be for “ni**er it up”?

      • Justin McKinney

        Good on the Red Sox for banning this a**hole. I am curious, what could he mean by her “”N”-wording it up”? Does that mean that she sang the anthem with soul, or with an amazing vocal range, or what? It’s a very strange expression.

      • Ben

        I’m not trying to defend a comment like that at all. I’m just thinking about the process for reporting someone for saying something racist and enforcing the rules of the business where that takes place.

        • Mike

          Your point is well taken. If there were no other witnesses, and the man denied saying it when authorities were present, then all they have as evidence is he said/he said. That’s no evidence at all.

          That doesn’t mean the alleged offender isn’t a liar or a coward, merely that there’s not enough evidence to kick him out of the game.

          • In these stories, racism always gets the benefit of the doubt.

            Look closely again. There’s nothing in any story that says nobody else heard it. All it said was an usher was notified and security intervened. There’s nothing that says security didn’t talk to other fans before the Red Sox took action. There’s nothing that says the action was taken solely on a he said-she said basis.

            And yet, as when a similar situation occurred at the Vikings game, THAT’S the assumption that gets elevated to likely fact before someone concludes that it’s a made up story.

            This is how it works. Every. Time.

            Far…. F-A-R… more likely is that the security team did talk to other people sitting near these people.

          • Mike

            No, it’s a reluctance to assume guilt based on allegations by what appears to be one person. I don’t assume those other details. To the contrary, if those other facts are not present in the article, then I assume they don’t exist. That’s a more logical position to take. Why wouldn’t a writer include them if they’re there?

            However we may feel about jackasses doing what they do in public, there has to be a modicum of fair process to ensure it’s actually true before we just start kicking people out of this or that, or bringing down the wrath of the internet on them.

          • // by what appears to be one person.

            Again, I’m pointing to how the story was conflated by readers to be only one person.

            Only one person wrote about it. Only one person went to an usher.

            That’s the extent of the facts that involve only one person.

            // That’s a more logical position to take.

            It’s really not. When people fill in gaps in what they know with what they think, it actually reveals the reader bias more so then reveal likely facts in a story.

            Usually what people substitute is what they most want to believe the facts are.

          • Mike

            Except I’m not the one substituting facts. I’m acknowledging that there are no more facts (at least as reported), and therefore it’s unwarranted to leap to the conclusion of guilt based on a skimpy set of facts.

            // Usually what people substitute is what they most want to believe the facts are.

            And that’s exactly what you’re doing in assuming the man’s guilt. Unless the position is that since the authorities kicked him out, they must be right, regardless of whatever facts are publicly known. In that case, it’s just blind trust in authority.

          • // it’s unwarranted to leap to the conclusion of guilt based on a skimpy set of facts.

            The leap to the conclusion of guilt is the determination by Red Sox security and the president of the Red Sox that he was guilty.

            I get that you don’t accept and that’s consistent — for whatever reason — with the reaction in Boston which has largely fallen along racial lines. Black player after black player has said, ‘Yep, that’s exactly what happened to me.” Black fans have said, “Yep, that’s been experience too.”

            The white folks from talk radio stations to the Internet have all been consistent in the , “racism? Whaaaaaaaaat?” reaction.

            You have to understand the entire context of the discussion. It’s no different than the white southerners who refuse to accept that there was a war because they wanted so badly to hold onto slavery. Or that the Confederate flag isn’t racist.

            It’s the same dynamic.

    • Rob

      Don’t lose any sleep over the likelihood that you’ll be banned from something you enjoy because of something you didn’t say, but were accused of saying. Your chances of being struck by lightning are way higher.

  • RBHolb

    The “it never happened” defense has been raised. I’m waiting for the other big 3:

    “It was just a joke;”

    “It was his First amendment right;” and

    “How come they can call each other the n-word, but white people can’t say it?”

    I swear, these things are as predictable as gravity.

    • Steve K

      I know right? White people are so horrible. Such awful people. BTW I hate racism.

  • S S
    • Steve K

      exactly lets blame entire states and cities for what one or two white guys said. But we should never racially profile. Because one person of colour is no reflection on the rest of them. But what one white person said in a stadium is a reflection on all whites and entire cities and states.

  • Will

    Good, I just hope the same treatment is handed down with any person of any race using any racial slur. Those words have no place around children or in public sports stadiums.

    • >> Those words have no place around children or in public sports stadiums.<<

      …or any other place for that matter…

      • Will

        Well on public streets it’s probably a free speech issue but in an establishment the owner can remove people who violate common decency.

        • So you’re fine making racist comments in private.

          Got it.

          • Will

            Haha, good one, don’t attempt to put words in my mouth ever again.

          • I was just following through with what you stated.

            >> Those words have no place around children or in public sports stadiums.<>Well on public streets it’s probably a free speech issue <<

            Expanding on that thought, you appear to have no issue with racist language in private.

            You COULD have just agreed with the "…or any other place for that matter…", but you didn't,

    • Rob

      Some slurs are worse than others. For example, you can’t credibly assert that there’s an equivalence between a black person calling a white person an ofay or a peckerwood with a white person calling a black person the N word.

  • James Cagney


  • lindblomeagles

    Just as we suspected . . . there IS a problem with race in America.

  • Steve K

    Here’s a better idea. lets ban all insults that exist in the english language that way no one can ever be offended again. yay!