Mercurial Outfielder posted a link to this thoughtful article on The Platoon Advantage.
“You are a Faggot.” That was Escobar’s message to anyone that came within ten feet of him or owned a high-resolution camera lens. It was a message that was understood by those who speak Spanish or the ability to Google, and no one stopped him. Not his teammates, coaches, or ownership. While we’ll never know if anyone said something to him in regards to the message of hate scrawled across his cheeks, I think we all agree that the likelihood that someone of authority or equal status seeing and understanding the message is pretty high.
There’s an undeniable groupthink to this sort of behavior. Walk into any locker room for any sport, and it’s likely you’ll find the same sophomoric and politically incorrect humor. Chances are, you’ll hear players chiding each other and posturing their masculinity and toughness. Chances are, you’ll hear comments much worse than the message Escobar wore on Saturday. There’s a history of baseball players getting in trouble for homophobic slurs, and sadly, it’s unlikely Escobar will be the last. In 2006, Ozzie Guillen was fined and forced to take sensitivity training for calling reporter Jay Mariotti a homophobic slur, and in 2001 Julian Tavares apologized after calling San Francisco Giants fans “faggots.” Tavares was also fined, and following the incident, over 2000 gay Cubs fans appeared at a game at Wrigley Field as part of the Pride Celebration.
While Cee Angi focuses primarily on baseball, this type of behavior isn't unique to the sport this blog mainly covers. That doesn't excuse baseball by any means, but it's a widespread problem that begins in the locker rooms at the youngest of ages.