- A commemorative Jackie Robinson Day hat from the Cleveland Indians drew sharp criticism and has already been removed from the MLB online store.
- The controversy is centered around the use of Chief Wahoo, a logo deemed racially insensitive to Native Americans, being displayed on a hat that is supposed to be celebrating a civil rights pioneer.
- The Indians themselves will remove the logo from their uniforms starting next year, as criticism of the logo has intensified in recent years.
Sunday was Jackie Robinson Day in Major League Baseball, but one piece of memorabilia from the Cleveland Indians drew controversy and has already been pulled from the league’s online store, according to Maury Brown of Forbes.
The hat’s use of the Indians’ Chief Wahoo logo, a caricature of Native Americans, alongside a patch commemorating the man who integrated baseball sparked outrage online.
Nothing says Jackie Robinson Day like selling racism with the number 42 on it. Great job, MLB. pic.twitter.com/iWiDIV5QfL
— Nick Stellini (@StelliniTweets) April 15, 2018
The Cleveland MLB club is seriously selling #JackieRobinsonDay Wahoo hats. They doing it with a straight face or a Chief Wahoo sh t-eating grin?
— Morgan Campbell (@MorganPCampbell) April 15, 2018
According to Brown, when MLB was notified the hat was for sale, “The league pulled it from the site, said that it was a mistake and had somehow slipped through the cracks.”
The Indians themselves will remove the logo from their uniforms next year. Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement at the time that ” . . . the logo is no longer appropriate for on-field use in Major League Baseball.”