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Peter Gammons' Boston Bombers Comments Hurt More Than the Yankees' Rodriguez

Peter Gammons' remarks are offensive to more than just Alex Rodriguez.
Peter Gammons' remarks are offensive to more than just Alex Rodriguez.Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images
Stephen SkinnerContributor IINovember 21, 2013

During an interview Thursday morning with Mike Lupica, baseball analyst Peter Gammons likened New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez's side of the dispute with MLB to that of the Boston Marathon bombers.  You can listen to the conversation that took place on ESPN Radiohere, via Deadspin.

As CBS New York reports, the respected veteran writer has since apologized, saying in part via a tweet: "...He is owed, and gets my apology for misspeaking."

Clearly, he has remorse toward A-Rod for his thoughtless and poorly worded candor while speaking with Lupica.

Unfortunately, it's not just Rodriguez that he owes an apology to.

By taking the childlike tantrums of a participant in a sport and comparing it to a cold, calculated act of terror upon innocent people, Gammons has trivialized the fear and hurt of that event's victims and their families.

I can say this because I was there.

My son ruck marched (they marched in boots and carried packs weighing between 30 and 50 pounds) the marathon with fellow members of the Syracuse University Army ROTC on that day.  If not for the fact that they started an hour earlier than everyone else, they would have been among the victims.

Syracuse University Army ROTC members ruck marched the entire Boston Marathon.
Syracuse University Army ROTC members ruck marched the entire Boston Marathon.Steve Skinner, BleacherReport

Whatever happens between Rodriguez and MLB will not have any consequence upon the lives of most Americans.  The same cannot be said of the bombings.

The cowards that set the explosives on that fateful day changed the lives of every spectator and participant. 

I will never forget the fear I saw in the eyes of passersby as I walked along the streets in Boston looking for a way out of the city.  Nor will I ever forget the genuine sense of desperation in trying to get word to our loved ones that we were OK.

Those moments in time are forever emblazoned in my memory.

To think that some arrogant, albeit acclaimed sports journalist would even in some small way equate that day's events to the political agenda of a baseball player angers me beyond comprehension.

The fact that said journalist is closely tied to Boston sports (born in Boston, worked for the Boston Globe, worked for ESPN and NESN) nauseates me.

I used to look forward to hearing what Peter Gammons had to say on Baseball Tonight when he was a contributor.  He always seemed to present an unbiased perspective in spite of his ties to Beantown.

Now, I will never hold the same respect for him.  He has cast himself among the mass of "wannabes" that report and write for the sake of sensationalism.

In doing so, he hurt more than A-Rod's feelings—he hurt the feelings of the very people he represented in the press for years.

He doesn't just owe Rodriguez an apology; he owes all of us one.

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