Last night during the MLB All Star game, someone found some old tweets from Brewers pitcher Josh Hader. These tweets included the n-word, white power and a statement that he hated gay people. Terrible stuff. They were tweeted 7 years ago when Hader was a 17-year-old high school kid here in Maryland. There are a lot of thoughts out there on this, so I thought I would add mine to the mix.
It doesn’t surprise me that a 17-year-old kid from this area would tweet some terrible stuff like this. I’ve seen posts like this from 17 year old kids in this area. I’ve seen recent tweets from 17 year old kids in this area that are hateful. Being from a diverse area does not automatically make you more accepting of others.
17 years old is way old enough to know that this is wrong. You can’t excuse hate because the hater is 17. Being young is not an excuse for hate. You can probably blame being dumb enough to post it publicly on being young.
This was 7 years ago, Hader was 17 at the time. He is now 24. I don’t know Hader. It’s possible that he is still the same asshole he was at 17, but at least one teammate, Lorenzo Cain, has said that the Hader he knows is not this person. That he is a kind-hearted person and a great teammate. He also says “At the end of the day you’ve got to give people a second chance…you’ve got to forgive people.” I agree with Cain. We’ve got to get better at forgiveness. We have become a society that doesn’t believe in second chances. We want to bury people for past mistakes and never give them a second chance. Yet, I’m sure we want forgiveness when we mess up. Also, how Cain feels means more than what random twitter users and bloggers think as he is someone who knows and works with Hader now.
I know that I was a completely different person at 24 than I was at 17. I would bet that I said and did some terrible things when I was 17. I probably said and did terrbile things when I was 18 and 19. I matured a lot from 19-24. I’m glad here were no old records of terrbile 17-year-old me that could be held against 24-year-old me. People grow. People evolve. Stop demanding people continue to pay for past mistakes. If we can’t move on, we might as well all give up now.