The Chicago Cubs banned a fan for life after he flashed an “OK” hand gesture on air during a game. The hand gesture is now being called a “white power” symbol.
After a #Chicago #Cubs fan was recorded making the infamous OK sign during a #CBS broadcast, some saw a "white power" symbol while others argued he was just playing the "circle game."#KnowYourMeme #News #CircleGame #InternetChallenge
— Know Your Meme (@knowyourmeme) May 10, 2019
Cubs executive, Crane Kenney, put out a statement on air that said,
“We have investigated the incident that occurred at Wrigley Field on May 7, 2019, where an individual was observed on camera using an offensive hand gesture that is associated with racism. The long-standing Chicago Cubs Guest Code of Conduct is in place to ensure a safe, comfortable and enjoyable environment for all fans and prohibits unacceptable behavior. After a review of last night’s broadcast footage, we concluded this individual’s actions violated the Guest Code of Conduct.
As a result, after repeated attempts to reach this individual by phone, we sent a letter to the individual notifying him of our findings and our decision that, effective immediately, he will not be permitted on the grounds of Wrigley Field or other ticketed areas indefinitely. We further communicated if he attempts to enter Wrigley Field or other ticketed areas he may be subject to prosecution for criminal trespass to property. We are not disclosing the name of the individual to the general public and will not be making any further comment on the matter.
Furthermore, Cubs president Theo Epstein, “made clear how egregious and unacceptable that behavior is and there’s no place for it in society, in baseball and at Wrigley Field.”
“Very Little Evidence”
ESPN personality Will Cain reported on Twitter after speaking with the Cubs:
“There is very little, if any, other evidence that this guy was flashing a white power symbol. No background, no social media posts, nothing. They also haven’t spoken to him and told me that they have no interest in hearing his side.”
There have been numerous other incidents of outrage over this symbol. During the Brett Kavanaugh hearings, Jewish attorney Zina Bash was accused of flashing the white supremacist symbol while on camera. During a group intern photo with President Trump, an intern flashed the “OK” symbol which created some controversy. And a Coast Guard member was disciplined for using the symbol while on camera.
This symbol has numerous meanings and is used frequently. Basketball players use it to celebrate three pointers. People use it as a game. Many people still just use it to say “OK,” and it has multiple other uses.
White supremacists knew this, and took advantage of it.
White Supremacists have used the current outrage culture to their benefit. That is why they artificially created this issue, and people are falling right into their trap. The Anti-Defamation League makes this very clear. They write:
“In 2017, the “okay” hand gesture acquired a new and different significance thanks to a hoax by members of the website 4chan to falsely promote the gesture as a hate symbol, claiming that the gesture represented the letters “wp,” for “white power.” The “okay” gesture hoax was merely the latest in a series of similar 4chan hoaxes using various innocuous symbols; in each case, the hoaxers hoped that the media and liberals would overreact by condemning a common image as white supremacist.” They then created fake identities and, “bombarded civil rights organizations, journalists, and others with messages furthering the “OK” hoax.”
The “OK” symbol is used as a trolling tactic by white supremacists. When this symbol is seen, there are people who immediately jump to the conclusion that it is promoting white supremacy. The people who are actually helping the white supremacists are those who quickly become outraged. That’s what they want! They want outrage. They want chaos.
The best way to fight white supremacy, in this case, is to not take the bait.