An estimated 200 people attended the OUT at the Ballpark event at the St. Louis Cardinals game on Saturday. Some had requested the Cardinals feature two same-sex members of their group on the "Kiss cam" for the game. They even played a Cher song ("I Got You Babe," with Sonny). But the Cardinals refused to feature any gay couples and featured only opposite-sex couples on Saturday.
The Cardinals are hiding behind some really tired arguments like, "Oh, we don't give any group special treatment" and "Oh, there are just so many people out there." Scoreboard operations director Tony Simokaitis told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
We look for lively areas, full areas where people are in their seats, watching the video board, somewhat paying attention. We try to get as many people in as we can in the minute and a half between innings. There's not a lot of time to allow us to make calculated judgments in terms of demographics.
Translation: The Cardinals don't want to feature gay people and they're not going to.
One argument against the request to feature gay people might be, "Well how do you know if two men are gay or straight?" And I fell for that argument last week. Not today. First, the Cardinals knew where the gay section was on Saturday, so they knew where to find them. Second, Simokaitis reveals that the Cardinals are very careful in whom they select, watching the crowd with an eagle's eye. If they're watching that closely, they know a gay couple when they see one.
Of course, the Cardinals didn't mind approaching a gay group to help them sell tickets to their games. So the Cardinals will take our money, they just don't want anyone seeing us kiss. I'm disappointed that Ethan Barnett of Pride St. Louis dismissed the Kiss Cam issue.
"We're really excited about it," Barnett told the Post-Dispatch. "It's the first time the Cardinals have gone so far as to look us up as a community and approach us. Everyone's been welcoming."
Yeah, they love taking your money and having you there, as long as you sit quietly in the stands and nobody has to see you kiss! Who won't take a few thousand dollars from the gays?
The Cardinals are six games out of the playoffs with only 14 games to play.