- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Hank Aaron’s recent comments about the need for America to realize that racism is still very much alive and thriving — only now due to those who wear “neckties and starched shirts” rather than KKK hoods — has sparked an angry backlash and many fans are turning the tables, calling the baseball legend himself a racist.

Hank Aaron is a scumbag piece of [expletive] [racial slur],” one man said in an email to the Atlanta Braves’ front office, one of the teams Mr. Aaron used to play for, CBS News reported. “My old man instilled in my mind from a young age, the only good [racial slur] is a dead [racial slur].”

Another emailed that Mr. Aaron exposed himself as “classless,” and a third, as a “racist,” for making the comments, USA Today reported.

Mr. Aaron’s previous comments, reported by USA Today: Race relations in America today “are not that far removed from when I was chasing [Babe Ruth’s] record. If you think that, you are fooling yourself. … We can talk about baseball, talk about politics. Sure, this country has a black president but when you look at a black president, President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he’s treated. We have moved in the right direction, and there have been improvements, but we still have a long ways to go in the country. The bigger difference is that back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts.”

Mr. Aaron — who played in the majors between 1954 and 1976 — broke Mr. Ruth’s career home-run record, which stood at 715, in 1974 and on the heels of receiving a torrent of hate mail, various media reported. Mr. Aaron’s 755 career home runs stood until 2007, when Barry Bonds broke it.