JACL Response to Major League Baseball Disciplinary Action


October 28, 2017

Press Release

Contact: Jeffrey Moy, Vice President for Public Affairs, jmoy@jacl.org
David Inoue, Executive Director, dinoue@jacl.org, 202-607-7273

JACL applauds the swiftness and degree of punishment as well as the unanimity of Major League Baseball, the Commissioner Manfred, both World Series teams’ leadership, and the Major League Baseball Players Association in their condemnation of Yuli Gurriel’s actions Friday night. The severity of a five game suspension does convey a recognition of the blatant racism and the impact of Mr. Gurriel’s behavior, however a concession has been made.

By postponing the suspension until next year MLB also makes it clear that the game of baseball, and the World Series itself, are more important than applying its disciplinary action immediately. We recognize there are concerns for the other players who may never have another chance to play in a World Series, but again, this is a choice of priorities by MLB in delaying application of punishment.

JACL calls upon Major League Baseball to utilize this extended time until the implementation of the punishment next season to reflect upon the role it has in enabling harmful stereotypes, whether in the words and actions of its players, or in the imagery of its teams and mascots.

The Japanese American Citizens League is a national organization whose ongoing mission is to secure and maintain the civil rights of Japanese Americans and all others who are victimized by injustice and bigotry. The leaders and members of the JACL also work to promote cultural, educational and social values and preserve the heritage and legacy of the Japanese American community.


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