Major League Baseball Players Association Executive Director Michael Weiner today issued the following statement regarding the 2011 All-Star Game and related activities to be held in Phoenix, AZ, July 10 - 12.
“The coming All-Star festivities in Phoenix have renewed attention on Arizona’s 2010 immigration initiative, SB 1070. In that light, I make the following statement on behalf of the MLBPA, including its members honored to participate in this year’s All-Star Game.
“On April 30, 2010, the MLBPA expressed publicly its opposition to SB 1070, and that position remains unchanged. We stated then that, if SB 1070 as written went into effect, we would consider additional measures to protect the interests of our members. SB 1070 is not in effect and key portions of the law have been judged unlawful by the federal courts. Under all the circumstances, we have not asked players to refrain from participating in any All-Star activities.
“The All-Star Game is an opportunity to celebrate the best that Major League Baseball has to offer. Without question, the best players are here. Each All-Star squad, as with each of the 30 Major League teams, is populated by the best players from baseball-playing countries around the globe.
“But the All Star Game is a chance to celebrate even more than that. It is a chance to celebrate Major League Baseball’s unprejudiced commitment to excellence – a commitment, undiminished for decades, to judge solely on the basis of individual ability and achievement. It is a chance to celebrate how much the game has been enriched by the contributions of players of different races, ethnicities and nationalities. It’s a chance to celebrate -- to marvel, actually -- at the example set every time a Major League team takes the field: that of a true team, composed of players of widely different backgrounds, working together towards a common goal.
“Our nation continues to wrestle with serious issues regarding immigration, prejudice and the protection of individual liberties. Those matters will not be resolved at Chase Field, nor on any baseball diamond; instead they will be addressed in Congress and in statehouses and in courts by those charged to find the right balance among the competing and sincerely held positions brought to the debate. Meanwhile, at the All Star Game, Major League Baseball makes good on its promise to field the best in the world in the only way it can -- by allowing the world to play. That truly is an occasion to celebrate and, perhaps, from which we all can learn.”
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey, and is a contributor to Forbes SportsMoney blog.. He is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided).
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