The Miami Marlins knew what they were getting when they hired Ozzie Guillen. A brash, no-nonsense lightning rod with a propensity to blurt whatever happens to be on his mind at any particular moment. But in a recent interview with Time magazine, he professed his admiration for longtime Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, stating that he loves and respects him for his ability to survive for such a long period of time. Now, I understand that this wonderful country has freedom of speech privileges, but this sort of profession almost deserves some sort of indictment, either by the community or the Marlins franchise. With nearly 800,000 Cuban-Americans and a 54 percent Hispanic population in the Miami-Dade area, this is perhaps the worst possible part of the country to be making such ludicrous remarks. Below is a video of Ozzie Guillen explaining his stance in this rather ugly ordeal.
As I previously said, I believe this type of behavior from Guillen deserves some sort of punishment, through suspension or termination. For too long, the baseball world has tolerated – actually, a better word to use would be “enabled” – Guillen’s antics by continually televising his rants and printing his ill-advised words. Perhaps if I was a longtime White Sox fan who experienced a World Series in 2005 when he was on the team, I would feel differently about the man. But the fact of the matter is his curse-laden, unintelligible postgame comments generate ratings; and the almighty dollar rules all. In regards to this particular incident, the question I have is whether Guillen is sorry about his actions, or the negative reaction that his ignorant comments created? My gut feeling is that Guillen’s comments were taken out of context, as his grasp of the English language isn’t necessarily the greatest and he probably intended for some sort of humorous shock value for his interview with Time. Whatever may come out of this mess, let’s be smart about Guillen’s tirades for once and give him the silent treatment that he deserves – and that we deserve out of him.