July 12, 2006
Three Strikes And You're Out
White Sox Manager Ozzie Guillen has made a name for himself recently in a manner less admirable than leading his team to last year's world championship. In a pre-game interview, the less than articulate rage-aholic referred to Chicago Sun-Times columnist Jay Mariotti thusly: "What a piece of s- - t he is; f- - king fag." Nice, huh?
Yet another popular sports figure setting a sterling example for the youth of America. How do these people rise to positions of prominence in a society that supposedly values our differences and supports the rights of the individual? It's sobering to think of how many kids out there, who love and follow baseball, now feel they've been given the license, even the encouragement, to verbally abuse classmates in this manner. Perhaps the most shocking fact of all is that this is "Strike Two" for Guillen.
You see, last year while publicly joking around in good ole' boy style in the dugout, Guillen yelled, "Hey everybody! This guy's a homosexual! He's a child molester." That was "Strike One." This moron actually thinks being gay is synonymous with being a pederast. One can only ponder the lack of intellect and taste that leads him to broadcast his ignorance so vociferously.
He was, naturally enough, cited for his gaff and made a rather lame apology to the gay community. It didn't garner as much attention as his more recent outcry because he didn't make those statements in a forum as public as an interview, and he claimed he was just kidding around with friends when it got a bit too loud. Yeah, right. Why does his "humor" repeatedly degrade an already savagely persecuted minority that doesn't need the bad press at this particular time?
Guillen claims his lack of civility stems from cultural differences. He's from Venezuela and just became a U.S. citizen. Here comes "Strike Three": in an attempt to make amends for his inexcusable remarks he stated, "I don't have anything against those people. In my country [I thought this was his country now], you call someone something like that and it is not the same as it is in this country." He continued to dig the hole deeper by explaining that where he comes from, the term "fag" doesn't allude to one's sexuality, but to their lack of courage.
He said Mariotti "was not man enough to meet me and talk" before publishing a column critical of this Neanderthal in the guise of a baseball manager — who's now an American citizen, but doesn't seem to have any intention of adopting our enlightened ways. Not that he shows any real favoritism to his native land by declaring Venezuela as a worldwide mecca for homophobia. And when it comes to gay people lacking courage, well, it appears he's hit a foul ball with a group strong enough to take him down a peg or two. Guillen, who refuses sensitivity training, has made an attempt at back-peddling by saying he has gay friends (I bet), he went to a Madonna concert, likes to watch WNBA games and plans to attend the Gay Games when they come to Chicago later this summer. He's pathetic.
Thank goodness we gays are forever resourceful and optimistic. In spite of our many challenges, we never lose our ever-quick wit. The one bright spot in this grotesquely inappropriate mess comes from The Kit Kat Lounge & Supper Club. That's a gay bar featuring one of Chicago's preeminent drag shows. The boyz and girlz over there have introduced a special drink to mark the occasion. It's called a "Guillen-Tini" because if you indulge in too many, you'll wake up with a hangover so severe you'll wish your head was gone. It's made with lots of chilled vodka and assorted fresh fruits. They serve it with a complimentary copy of the Sun-Times Sports Section at a modest price of $8.50. They'll be shaking up this twist on the martini through the end of the baseball season. They've hit a home run with that one!