When it comes to social justice, the Boston Red Sox are a franchise with a very troubled history. They even had to rename the street adjacent to their home stadium of Fenway Park, because it had honored a former team owner who resisted efforts to integrate baseball back in the 1950s.
Racist incidents involving their fan base in recent years have been well documented. However, last week saw the Boston Red Sox position themselves on the right side of history. And there's no better time than the World Series to get a positive message out there, as more eyeballs will be upon the club.
Tomorrow night will see Fenway Park host game one of the 2018 World Series, an edition that is expected to draw bigger ratings than usual. The MLB experts are predicting the Sox to win the series and beat the National League champion Los Angeles Dodgers. They are favored to emerge victorious for a whole host of reasons, starting with the dominant form they showcased in the regular season and postseason up to this point.
They went 108-54 during the regular season, and took out a pair of very formidable opponents in the arch-rival New York Yankees and Houston Astros in the ALDS and ALCS respectively. The Red Sox also won off the field on Thursday with the massive financial donation they made on "Spirit Day.”
The club gave $200,000 to the cause of a Spirt Day, a world-wide, LGBTQ anti-bullying campaign during National Bullying Prevention Month., The Red Sox, in partnership with Fenway Sports Group President Mike Gordon’s Gordon Family Foundation, pledged to support the neighborhood LGBTQ health center, Fenway Health.
The money will go towards boosting Fenway Health’s youth, anti-bullying and anti-violence programs, including its Violence Recovery Program.
“Spirit Day is meant to bring attention and awareness to bullying among LGBTQ youth, and there is no better way to affect real change related to this kind of abuse – whether its verbal or physical – than by supporting the great work being done right in our own neighborhood at Fenway Health,” said Red Sox President and CEO Sam Kennedy.
“We are lucky to have a facility in our community with the highest level of leadership and expertise in this area, and are thankful to Mike and Christina Gordon for their partnership, generosity, and thoughtfulness around this important topic.”
While the Red Sox have certainly had their share of very negative publicity lately, in regards to sociopolitical issues, the club has done a lot of good too. This gift shows they are committed to the betterment of the LGBTQ community. They also participated in Major League Baseball’s “Shred Hate” campaign in 2017, which is part of an initiative by the nonprofit No Bully to try and eradicate bullying and cyberbullying worldwide.
Hey, they're doing a lot more than Melania Trump is on that front!
Additionally, Red Sox Outfielder Mookie Betts was one of nine players who lent his voice to the public service announcement launched earlier this month.
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, is currently a regular contributor to SB Nation, WGN CLTV and Chicago Now.
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