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Jewish Journal

Yankees cut ties with singer for anti-Semitic joke

by Brad A. Greenberg

October 20, 2009 | 12:07 am

Photo: The Bwog

The Yankees have cut ties with singer Ronan Tynan, who for years has sung “God Bless America” during the seventh-inning stretch of post season Yankee games, for making an anti-Semitic remark. He says it was a joke, but apologized nonetheless. The Yankees don’t seem to care.

More from the AP:

On Friday, during the ALCS opener, Yankees spokeswoman Alice McGillion said: “There are no plans for him to sing.”

McGillion said Friday a woman sent an e-mail to a team official this week claiming Tynan made the remark while the woman was being shown an apartment in the building where he lives.

The real estate agent reportedly said to Tynan, “They are not Red Sox fans.” He responded: “As long as they’re not Jewish.”

In an e-mail to the AP, Tynan said he’d previously spoken to the real estate agent about two Jewish women who had looked at the apartment and “how scary for them it would be for living next to me with my music and singing.”

Tynan confirmed his remark to the team official but said he was joking, McGillion said, and the Yankees severed ties with him.

Tynan said Saturday the woman, Gabrielle Gold-von Simson, a doctor at New York University, accepted his apology and that he made a contribution to the charity, KiDs of NYU.

This story might be a mountain out of a molehill, but it’s not as bad as the reaction to Reggie Jackson’s off-the-cuff, potentially anti-Semitic remark last summer. But it’s not a surprise the Yankees would be sensitive to perceptions that one of their performers was an anti-Semite. They do, after all, play in New York.

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