Rename Yawkey Way after Elijah "Pumpsie" Green - The Man Who Ended Segregation in Baseball
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The main entrance to Fenway Park is located on Yawkey Way, named after the the wealthy industrialist who owned the Red Sox from 1933–1976 and famously resisted integration of his team. The Red Sox were the last major league team to integrate their roster, 12 long years after Jackie Robinson joined the Dodgers and broke the color barrier in Major League Baseball.
The current owner of the Red Sox, John Henry, says his team's racist legacy "haunts him and he wants the street renamed - after David Ortiz, our Big Papi. While Big Papi is beloved and deserving of this honor, there is a better choice and that would be to rename Yawkey Way after Elijah "Pumpsie" Green, the player who ended segregation in baseball when he joined the Red Sox in 1959.
This offers our team an opportunity to send the message that, as John Henry says, "the Red Sox are not just multi-cultural, but stand for as many of the right things in our community as we can -- particularly in our African-American community and in the Dominican community that has embraced us so fully." This is a teachable moment and an chance to acknowledge our troubled past while celebrating the role played by Pumpsie Green in the history of the Red Sox.
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