Baseball is my favorite sport so its interesting to see the current dustup over Ozzie Guillen’s comments regarding Fidel Castro overshadow the start of the season. Guillen is reported to have said that he “loves” Fidel Castro and admired him to have stayed in power when powerful forces were aligned against him. Guillen at least did not claim to be misquoted but did say that his statement was taken out of context. Naturally the older Cuban-Americans in Miami have expressed outrage and an advocacy group has threatened to boycott the team until Guillen is fired. This is interesting because up until this year it looked as though the team was being boycotted by the same fans, despite winning two world series. I heard some commentators remark that Ozzie is from Venezuela and Venezuelans were different from Cubans. Excuse me? You mean that Marlin management thought that all Hispanics were alike? Maybe it would have made more sense for them to have linked Venezuela with Hugo Chavez who is a fan of Castro. Regardless, if the Marlins had thought a Cuban-American manager was more desirable than one from Venezuela, then they would have not fired Fredi Gonzalez – the current manager of the Atlanta Braves – who managed the Marlins from 2007-2010 and who was born in Havana.
Harold A. Black is professor emeritus in the Department of Finance, University of Tennessee, Knoxville having retired after 24 years of service. He has served on the faculties of American University, Howard University, the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill and the University of Florida. His government service includes the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and as a Board Member of the National Credit Union Administration. He also has served on the boards of directors Home Savings of America and its parent company, H. F. Ahmanson & Co., Irwindale, California prior to its merger with Washington Mutual Savings Bank, on the board of New Century Financial Corporation, Irvine, California, then the nation’s largest real estate investment trust and as director and later chairman of the Nashville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. He writes an occasional article for the Knoxville News-Sentinel at http://www.knoxnews.com/staff/dr-harold-black/. His web page is haroldablackphd.com