A youth baseball president and coach has been suspended for an entire season because of a bizarre racist Facebook rant aimed at the late Whitney Houston, a punishment that may have displeased all parties because it has not completely eliminated the man's involvement with the league.
As first reported by the Chicago Sun-Times, Oak Lawn (Ill.) Westside Baseball president John Kelly posted a brief rant about incessant media coverage of Whitney Houston's death on his personal Facebook page. The complaint was both straightforward and unambiguously racist, using the most vile epithet for African-Americans available.
His Facebook post read, in part, "I'm so sick of reading about this dumb stupid N - - - - - Whitney Houston."
Shortly after Kelly posted the comment on his Facebook feed a Westside Baseball mother saw it and reposted it on both her own Facebook feed and on the league's Facebook page.
While the parent who first discovered Kelly's mini-rant refused to be identified publicly, she said that she spread the president's comment because she was worried about how he would react to African-American players involved in the league.
Meanwhile, Kelly has been allowed to continue to serve on the Westside Baseball board, despite the fact that he stands by his comments about how the media and state officials have handled Houston's death … with the exception of his use of the epithet in question. Kelly also announced that he was enrolling in sensitivity classes to try and rehabilitate himself and his image.
"I don't need this drama in my life. It's going to affect me hugely, and my business," Kelly told the Sun-Times.
"I do stand behind everything I said except the 'n'-word. I regret using that adjective. Does that make me a racist? Are you kidding me? It was the farthest thing from my mind. I have some amazing friends who are black."
- Whitney Houston