Twitter’s Outrage Over Cleveland Indian Fan’s Nazi Tattoo Is Ironic

A distraught father shared viral images of a shirtless man with swastika tattoos sitting in front of his family at a Cleveland Indians game.

close up of Cleveland Indians marquee at Progressive Field

The racists of this country are unapologetically reveling in the tense state of race relations perpetuated by President Donald Trump and his administration.

They are emboldened and proud, as evidenced by the stark uptick in hate crimes occurring throughout the United States, and a situation from Monday evening that involved a neo-Nazi boldly displaying his racist tattoos at a Cleveland Indians game against the Toronto Blue Jays.

Photos of the man’s body ink went viral after a distressed father shared them on social media, Mic reports.

“Do my kids and I have to have a swastika and Nazi train staring at us all game today?” Martin Gecovich tweeted directly to the Indians’ official profile.

According to Deadspin, Gecovich made his tweets private after he shared the news that field staff moved him and his children to different seats. However, the incident and the photos were already making a splash on the social network with people criticizing the Indians organization for not enforcing code of conduct policies.

It is true: There should have been some staff or security around to ask the unidentified man to cover his offensive ink while in the stadium.

However, Mic points out the powerful irony that the Indians organization itself perpetuates and condones racism with its controversial mascot.

The animated character known as Chief Wahoo depicts a very exaggerated, stereotypical perception of Native Americans and has been condemned for its minstrel-like characterization.

Native American activists have protested and pleaded for the mascot to be changed, along with the name and logo of the Washington Redskins.  

Furthermore, the team’s logo prompts many oblivious fans to attend games dressed in stereotypical Native American garb including head dresses and war paint. While they may believe they are simply showing team spirit, they are actually culturally appropriating a marginalized group of people.

A Cleveland Indians fan wearing a head dress sits on the ground during a game

Granted, the team and the MLB have taken strides to shy away from Chief Wahoo, including swapping the logo out on uniforms and caps for a block letter “C;” however, it has not been completely phased out. 

So, in essence, Gecovich's family was surrounded by racism during the game, but it was specifically the swastika staring them in the face that sparked the outrage.

Does this ordeal suggest that some forms of racism are excusable while others aren't? That misguided logic is only a part of the problem, not the solution. 

Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons, Arturo Pardavila III

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