Pat Garofalo’s NBA tweet has dropped the Minnesota state republican into some hot water with his constituents, as well as just about anyone else on social media this week. Garofalo sent out a tweet Sunday night that many people took as racially prejudiced.
According to a report from The Associated Press Monday, as carried by Fox News, Garofalo’s tweet “prompted hundreds of responses, with many on social media calling it racist.” Within a few hours, his tweet had been retweeted over 600 times, and like almost all potentially bigoted words put in print, they are not easily retractable.
The member of the Minnesota House of Representatives tweeted during last night’s Minnesota Timberwolves game:
Let's be honest, 70% of teams in NBA could fold tomorrow + nobody would notice a difference w/ possible exception of increase in street crime — Rep. Pat Garofalo (@PatGarofalo) March 9, 2014
As you can imagine, most perceived this to be a clear shot at blacks and crime. Garofalo (R-Farmington) is now being blasted from one corner of the Internet to the other.
Close to 80 percent of players in the NBA are African American, and Garofalo's inference is clear, whether stats back it up or not. He may as well just have said: "Blacks commit most crimes."
Garofalo had to quickly backtrack on his tweet. In an email to Kevin Draper of The Diss, Garofalo defended his words:
"I was talking about the NBA's high arrest rate and that their punishment for positive drugs tests are weaker than other leagues. No intent beyond that. The culture among many pro athletes that they are above the law is the problem, not people like me pointing that problem out."
Did Garofalo make up for his initial tweet, or is he simply covering his “racist” tracks? Let us know what your thoughts are below.