- The Washington Times - Monday, July 30, 2018

Washington Nationals closer Sean Doolittle, a supporter of LGBTQ rights, on Monday tweeted a thoughtful thread addressing how athletes should approach social media mistakes of their past.

The thread comes one day after teammate Trea Turner became the latest in a string of baseball players who have had vulgar, racist or homophobic posts on Twitter unearthed.

“It sucks to see racist and homophobic language coming from inside our league - a league I’m so proud to be a part of that I’ve worked really hard to make a more accepting and inclusive place for all our fans to enjoy,” Doolittle wrote in the first of nine tweets.

Doolittle believes the answer is not for athletes to leave Twitter, Instagram or other social media platforms. He was quick to note that the content of the posts should matter more than how long ago they were written and how they were discovered in 2018.



“A lot of the tweets that have surfaced are from several years ago — from a time in their lives when they may not have realized the impact those words have,” Doolittle acknowledged. “But as you learn from and grow out of that youthful indescretion (sic), delete those posts to reflect that growth.”

Players have an obligation to leave the MLB better than they found it, Doolittle said.

“There’s no place for racism, insensitive language or even casual homophobia,” Doolittle wrote. “I hope we can learn from this and make the MLB a place where all our fans feel welcome.”

Turner, Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb and Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Josh Hader also have been forced to account for racist or homophobic language in their social media profiles this month. Earlier this year, Villanova basketball player Donte DiVincenzo and Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen faced similar questions and criticism for bad tweets from their pasts, during the NCAA men’s basketball championship game and NFL Draft week, respectively.

The Nationals have not played since Turner’s tweets were discovered and circulated Sunday night. They take the field Tuesday night at Nationals Park against the New York Mets.

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