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Sport Opinion: San Francisco Giants right to exclude Aubrey Huff from 2010 World Series celebration

20:55  18 february  2020
20:55  18 february  2020 Source:   usatoday.com

Giants tell Aubrey Huff he will not be invited to 2010 reunion due to tweets

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Aubrey Huff’s politics aren’t the problem.

a baseball player holding a bat on a field: Aubrey Huff played with the Giants from 2010-13.© Rob Carr, Getty Images Aubrey Huff played with the Giants from 2010-13.

It’s his blatant bigotry.

His raging misogyny.

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His bullying and thinly veiled threats that he then tries to pass off as “jokes.”

The San Francisco Giants confirmed Monday night that they’ve told their former first baseman he won’t be included in any celebrations of their 2010 World Series championship, citing his toxic posts on social media “that are unacceptable and run counter to the values of our organization.”

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To the surprise of no one, Huff didn’t take the snub well, whining Tuesday morning that this was political correctness run amok and styling himself as a champion of our most cherished freedoms.

“And while I’m disappointed the Giants are so opposed to President Trump, and our constitutional rights that they’d uninvite me to my teams (sic) reunion, it shows me that now more than ever we have to stand up for our 1st amendment rights,” Huff said in a statement posted on Twitter.

“Otherwise, the America we know and love is already dead.”

Oh, please. If Huff is so concerned about defending the Constitution, he should start by actually reading it. Maybe then he’d realize the First Amendment prohibits censorship of speech by the government, which a Major League Baseball team is not.

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More to the point, no one is prohibiting Huff from spewing his thoughts on Twitter, regardless of how vile and cringe-worthy they might be. No one is preventing him from expressing his support for President Donald Trump.

But a free society does not mean a free-for-all. Actions have consequences, and Huff’s penchant for trafficking in bigotry and misogyny has made the Giants decide he’s someone they’d rather not associate with any longer.

Given some of his tweets this year alone, it’s hard to blame them.

There was the one where he suggested kidnapping Iranian women and bringing them to the United States, saying they’d be so grateful they’d “fan us and feed us grapes.” There was the one where he expressed hope that protesters would be shot. There was the one where he said it was “way harder” to be a baseball player than a teacher. There were the many, many ones in which he demeaned women and said they were meant to be subservient to men.

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And in what was probably the final straw for the Giants, he criticized their hiring of Alyssa Nakken, baseball’s first female coach, and implied it was a stunt.

“Couldn’t imagine taking baseball instruction from an ex female softball player,” Huff said, followed by the eye-roll emoji.

Huff claimed in his statement Tuesday that his tweets were “locker room humor,” “meant to be satirical and sarcastic.” Except he’s doubled down on everything he’s said, proudly proclaiming himself to be an example of a “real” American man.

Then he criticized the Giants and everyone else for not being able to take a joke. Which is what thin-skinned bullies usually say when someone finally stands up to them.

The Giants aren’t cropping Huff out of team photos from 2010 or deleting his name from the roster of their World Series champions. They haven’t asked for his World Series ring back. With his team-high 26 home runs in 2010 and oversized personality in the clubhouse, Huff will always be an integral part of that championship team.

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But the good things Huff did 10 years ago don’t give him a lifetime pass to be a cretin. Crying “Politics!” isn’t an excuse for being demeaning and abusive.

Huff has every right to speak his mind. The Giants have just as much right to want no part of it.

Follow USA TODAY Sports columnist Nancy Armour on Twitter @nrarmour.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Opinion: San Francisco Giants right to exclude Aubrey Huff from 2010 World Series celebration

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