Ozzie Guillen Hasn’t Slept In Three Days, Apologizes To Miami’s Cuban Americans (Video)
Recently-suspended Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen just held a press conference explaining his controversial, sympathetic-sounding comments about Cuban leader Fidel Castro, which were magnified in light of Miami's large Cuban population. Guillen, who certainly genuinely appeared downtrodden, called himself "sad" and "embarrassed" at his remarks - and also said he never meant to say that he actually admired Castro. Rather, he said he's just surprised that he's managed to stay in power as long as he has:
Hugo Chavez - socialist leader in Guillen's native Venezuela - came up at the press conference too. Guillen said he doesn't like him, either, and it's pretty easy to back that assertion up. But the main refrain was what you see above: Guillen reiterating over and over that he doesn't actually harbor any personal fondness for Castro.
We imagine Guillen meant to indicate something of a grudging respect (a lot different from actual goodwill) for Castro's ability to stay in power, so we do feel some sympathy for the guy. He realizes he waded into something he probably shouldn't have at all with the comments, and again, seemed to genuinely feel bad about hurting people. Additionally, conducting the presser primarily in Spanish was the right move.
But the way Guillen had to explain over and over that he was only surprised and he doesn't actually like Castro - after enough times hearing that, one could be forgiven for thinking, "Okay, we get it - how much longer are we gonna make this guy sit there and grovel?" Guillen was right when he said today that the wounds opened up between him and Miami's Cuban population won't go away immediately. We imagine they will eventually, but it'll take time. Guillen's paying enough of a price with his suspension and public apology - without that public apology dragging uncomfortably on and on.
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