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|Georgia Equality equates Braves coach behavior to that of 'bully'|
|Written by Dyana Bagby|
|Thursday, 28 April 2011 13:01|
Georgia Equality officials hand-delivered a letter to the Atlanta Braves today, demanding the team at all levels undergo sensitivity training after allegations pitching coach Roger McDowell used anti-gay slurs against fans during a game in San Francisco.
“Mr. McDowell’s actions are far too reminiscent of the action of John Rocker over a decade ago,” says Georgia Equality Executive Director Jeff Graham in the letter to John Schuerholz, president of the Atlanta Braves.
“As one of the leaders of the coalition that formed to condemn those comments, I cannot express how profoundly disappointed I am that this has once again happened. What is perhaps most troubling is that unlike John Rocker, Roger McDowell serves in a leadership position within the organization. Without firm disciplinary action, others will assume this his casual use of anti-gay speed and threats of physical violence is somehow tolerable.”
Graham also told Schuerholz that the Braves team and employees needed to undergo sensitivity training and asked that the team be a part of a national effort to stop bullying in schools.
“It is imperative that you realize that this behavior is the behavior of a bully,” says Graham. “We have watched with horror how the number of children taking their own lives due to relentless bullying has escalated over the past few years. When adults engage in this same behavior, especially adults in the public spotlight like Mr. McDowell, it sends a strong message that it’s acceptable.”
The national Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation demanded an investigation into the matter.
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