On April 27, Detroit Tigers outfielder Delmon Young was arrested for aggravated harassment and public intoxication in New York City. Reports indicate that Young came out of a bar where a homeless man wearing a yarmulke asked Young for spare change. This seemingly harmless event quickly took a turn for the worst when Young began beating the man and screaming “F***ing Jews!” repeatedly. After other people saw what was going on, one man attempted to intervene but was knocked down by Young. Young was arrested by the New York police and released on $5,000 bail. He is due back in court on May 29. As of April 27, he was suspended for seven games without pay.
When I first heard this news I was outraged. Because I’m Jewish, anti-semitism is not something that I take lightly. The fact that Young is a prominent public figure just makes the matter worse. Like any other professional athlete, he is constantly in the public eye, so when he lets one go like this it should raise some eyebrows.
I am more upset, however that the disciplinary actions taken against Young were almost non-existent. While the New York Police department did everything they could, and my hat goes off to them for not handing out any special favors, what the Detroit Tigers and the MLB did was outrageous. In my opinion, a seven game suspension is a joke. Now, if the was this first time he had done something like this maybe I’d let see reason to let it slide, but while playing for the Montgomery Biscuits in 2005, he was suspended for three games for bumping an umpire (literally coming up and bashing his shoulder against him). The next year, he was suspended for 50 games for throwing a bat at an umpire. In a later statement he was sorry for doing such and did not intend to hit the umpire. If this is indeed true it would seem to me that accidental contact with one person while sober is much more of a crime then verbally and physically assaulting two people, even when intoxicated.
I can’t begin to fathom why in such a strict league, where most off field actions are monitored so closely, something like this slid by. Professional athletes are public figures and have responsibilities as role models. The last thing a role model should do is act like an animal, and in a sense, get away with it.
I am not the only one who disagrees with this lack punishment.
“Delmon Young is disrespectful to his organization”, said Tam sophomore Hank Townsend.
Sophomore Ben Knauer felt similarly. “Delmon Young does not belong in this game because he does not respect it,” he said.
There needs to be something more drastic to set a standard for athletes not only in the MLB, but in all of sports to show atheltes that bad behavior is absolutely unacceptable. Delmon Young should be released from the Tigers and not let back in the league by the commissioner Bud Selig. This was an incident that should have never happened and quite frankly, I am shocked at the fact that this isn’t a massive scandal. Fans and players need to blow this up to such a scale that incidents like this are not permissible. Delmon Young is not the player you want to have to show the new era of baseball.
We cannot afford to stand back while players act immature and unprofessional. We need to protest, boycott, and not support the teams and leagues that do not do anything to punish these players. Delmon Young should not be allowed back in the MLB. While I do beilve in second chances he has already blown two of them. If he wants to play baseball at a competitive level he needs to prove he has made a mistake and owned up for it. Actions have consequences and while they can be reversed, you cannot take away the hurt that has been done.