Josh Hader, a pitcher for the Milwaukee Brewers apologized for his racist and homophobic tweets from seven years ago, but now he has developed a following of racists who gave him a standing ovation at last night’s Brewers game.
TMZ says that Hader took the mound against the Los Angeles Dodgers when he was greeted with cheers and a standing ovation.
Last week old tweets surfaced where Hader pledged his allegiance to white power and used derogatory language about gays and people of color.
“White power,” “I hate gay people,” and “Hahahahahah yeah to bad I’m f***ing grounded n***** can’t do s***.”
Hader apologized and said that he was childish and immature back then.
“I was 17 years old and, as a child, I was immature and I obviously said some things that were inexcusable.”
But Brewers fans are not holding this against him, making many observers wonder why so many people are bending over backward to support someone who made a revolting mistake.
Radio host Tariq Nasheed tweeted that the fans’ reaction was disappointing.
“Baseball player Josh Hader was exposed for making a series of racist, anti-Black tweets, and when he stepped on the field today, he received a standing ovation from thousands of suspected white supremacists in the audience.
Anti-Black hatred is a completely normalized culture.”
— MLB Now (@_MLBNow) July 22, 2018
Hader has stepped away from Twitter but supporters of his old tweets have started a Twitter page in support of his old tweets called “Support Josh Hader.” They criticized Hader’s teammate Jesus Aguilar for supporting him.
“Jesus and Lorenzo Support hader? How dare you betray your race! Don’t you know us ashamed whites only Jack off to minorities that agree with our views?”
Deadspin says that it’s odd that Hader should be cheered for admitting that he is no longer doing bad rather than someone who is doing good. Writer Chris Thompson said that all he will offer Hader is to not boo him too loud. He says that the “overwhelmingly” white crowd was representative of the people who were angry on Twitter, defending Hader before he even apologized for past racist tweets.
“There’s something undeniably jarring about an overwhelmingly white crowd’s eagerness to envelop Hader in a show of support, to loudly reaffirm his position among them. It would be unfair to assume this was done because he was racist, but it also cannot have been done because Hader exemplifies ideals of inclusivity and anti-racism, which, on the racist-not racist spectrum, is the only thing worthy of applause.”
Hader for his part took the applause as the crowd forgiving him, but many others are more skeptical of the out of proportion support for a player who would have been happy not to be booed.