IT'S GETTING WORSER AND WORSER
I offer this story off of the WRC-TV website with no editorial comment. It looks like there is going to be no honeymoon for the new ownership group -- regardless of who it is.
WASHINGTON -- New racial tension is mounting in the battle over which group will own the Washington Nationals baseball team.
D.C. Council members Vincent Orange and Marion Barry on Monday accused the Ted Lerner bidding group of "renting blacks" and engaging in "tokenism" in an effort to showcase its bid.
They said the group is not sincerely hiring black partners. "Renting some blacks, having some tokens, let's take that off the table," Orange said.
"Not show-dressing, not store fronting, but real, Major League Baseball needs to do better than it has done around the country. It needs to use Washington as a model," Barry said. On Tuesday, Barry and Orange will promote a council resolution urging Major League Baseball to pick either Jeffrey Smulyan's group or the Fred Malik and Jeffrey Zients group, both of which have strong minority representation.
"These are individuals of significant means. This isn't a group of people where you're just asking them to put up $100,000 or 200,000 and saying, 'Let me rent you for a few days,'" Orange said.
Barry also warned that the Lerners would have trouble coming before the council on any baseball business, and said he's worried that the Lerner group had to be told by baseball to include more minority owners.
"I've gone through the Civil Rights Movement. I've seen courts and mayors and white people do things, you turn your back and they undo it. And we don't need that ... so I speak a little different about it. I've experienced this kind of double-dealing, and I'm not going to take it anymore," Barry said.
The Lerners declined to comment to News4.
Several city leaders say they've cautioned Major League Baseball that racial sentiments need to be considered in picking an owner, given the city's racial makeup and baseball's desire to increase attendance among blacks.
Sources close to all three bidding groups told News4 on Monday, the racial talk is just another reason that baseball should pick an owner soon.
Major League Baseball is expected to pick a new owner any day now.
I agree with what they're saying, i.e. that tokenism is reprehensible, but Barry and Orange are only coming out of the woodwork on this to grab a headline. The whole D.C. Council is addicted to headlines, and they've used the Nats as an attention getter since day one!!!
Argh!!! There is enough racial tension in our community and in our nation without jackasses like these exploiting situations like this.
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