Padres Finally Respond to Gay Men’s Chorus Debacle

Jim Burroway

May 23rd, 2016

Last Saturday, just before the San Diego Padres home game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, spectators in the stands and viewers on television saw the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus line up behind second base where they were to sing the National Anthem. But after a delay, a recording of a woman singing the “Star Spangled Banner” rang out on the P.A. system while the chorus was left standing there for what was probably the longest humiliating two minutes of their lives, a humiliation that ended only after the recording was done and the chorus was then shoo’d off the field. The debacle was then followed by silence from the P.A. announcer — no explanation, no apology, nothing.

The SDGMC was not happy. The Padres issued a small two-sentence apology, but it really didn’t explain anything, leaving a lot of people wondering what the hell happened? Now when you look at the video, it looks to me like it was some kind of a major, unprofessional error in the control booth. (Notice how, in the video, the first few words of the national anthem are cut off before some turns the volume up.) But as I said yesterday, the Padres apparent attempts to shrug the whole thing off seemed problematic, at the very least. Does anyone really think that they would have shown at least a little bit more concerned as it happened if it had been a Navy chorus — what with San Diego being a pretty big Navy town — instead 100 gay men? Wouldn’t there have been at least some acknowledgement over the P.A. that something went wrong and an apology if it had been a band from Camp Pendleton just up the road?

I’m pretty sure we can all come to some conclusions on that.

I guess the saying “better late than never” applies here. The Padres finally seems to have offered a more robust response to what happened:

As a result, the team said it had ended its relationship with a contractor and disciplined an employee who was responsible for the game production on Saturday. The Padres accepted full responsibility and expressed deep regret, the statement said.

(Chorus Executive Director Bob Lehman) said he had spoken with Mike Dee, the team’s chief executive, whom he described as sincerely apologetic. Mr. Lehman said he had been told that the regular technician was in a car crash the night before and that a substitute was in the control room.

“Somebody didn’t know how to press the stop button?” he asked. “I couldn’t believe a professional organization like that didn’t know what to do.”

On Twitter, the team said it had offered the chorus an opportunity to return.

Melina G

May 25th, 2016

This is the most horribly written article I have ever stumbled upon – anywhere. It was almost painful to try to decipher the sentences. May I ask what criteria are used when contributors are chosen? High School Freshman English is obviously not on the list of requirements.

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