Tone-Deaf Promotion Of The Year Award Goes To: ‘Blue Lives Matter’, Staten Island Yankees
Not fun: Race and politics controversies at a baseball game. The Yankees followed up on Sunday with their "Blue Lives Matter" promotion, an event in part to honor New York Detectives Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos, who were killed in the line of duty this past December.
Problem: the Blue Lives Matter night was held on the anniversary, to the day, of Michael Brown's death. His shooting by police sparked the "Black Lives Matter" protest movement.
Not insensitive at all, Staten Island Yankees! pic.twitter.com/rlFZQ5mw9Z
— Aaron Fischer (@AaronFisch) August 9, 2015
So a nice, worthy memorial to two slain NYPD officers was transformed into an awkward political statement, which is sad.
The choke-hold death of Eric Garner at the hands of Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo took place on Staten Island on July 17 2014.
For their part, the SI Yankees say that it was all a coincidence, and that they didn't mean to offend anyone. SI Yankees president Jane Rogers, via the Huffington Post:
“There was never any intent to cause controversy or ill-will feelings toward anyone in the community or outside the community. It’s how we treat any group that comes to the ballpark for fundraising efforts. We do this constantly with many, many groups. It was never a matter of favoring one group over another.
“We wanted to raise money for the families. [Blue Lives Matter] weren’t handing out any propaganda. There were no political motives."
But the name itself is propaganda. Why co-opt the name of the Black Lives Matter movement at all? It comes off as a political statement, not a charity effort.
SI Yankees senior director of marketing Michael Holley:
"We put a lot of thought into whether or not to hold this promotion when Blue Lives Matter originally approached us."
Not nearly enough, though. Might I suggest a pocket calendar next time?
— DNAinfo.com New York (@DNAinfo) August 10, 2015
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