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Chicago Cubs’ Muslim Fans Want Action After Team Patriarch’s Islamophobic Emails

American Muslim admirers of the Chicago Cubs want potent action just after revelations this week that the patriarch of the loved ones that owns the staff for a long time emailed racist jokes and Islamophobic conspiracy theories. 

The electronic mail exchanges in between Joe Ricketts, the billionaire TD Ameritrade founder and Republican megadonor who bought the Chicago Cubs in 2009, and several loved ones and good friends reportedly contained language that portrayed Islam as a “cult” and painted Muslims as the “enemy.”

Equally Ricketts and his son Tom Ricketts, the team’s chairman, have apologized for the email messages, first released by Splinter on Monday.

But more has to be accomplished to repair service the now-weakened connection in between the Chicago Cubs and Muslim admirers, Ahmed Rehab, executive director of the Chicago department of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, informed HuffPost. 

“It is crucial that a beloved Chicago institution these types of as this does what is necessary to regain the belief of impacted communities, and admirers in common, and recommit to our collective concepts of anti-dislike and ‘everybody in,‘” Rehab claimed, referring to the Cubs’ 2018 slogan.

Rehab claimed CAIR-Chicago options to meet with Tom Ricketts on Friday to make clear how Muslim admirers experience “rejected and isolated” by their staff. He claimed he would like to see the Cubs choose a potent stance versus the “repugnant anti-Muslim beliefs” in Joe Ricketts’ email messages.

“We will also examine probable means ahead to deal with what’s been broken and regain self confidence, belief, and belonging,” Rehab claimed. 

Joe Ricketts, with wife Marlene, before the start of Game 5 of the World Series featuring the Chicago Cubs in 2016. 



Joe Ricketts, with spouse Marlene, ahead of the start off of Match 5 of the World Sequence that includes the Chicago Cubs in 2016. 

Joe Ricketts, 77, reportedly bought 34 million TD Ameritrade shares for about $403 million to obtain the Chicago Cubs. His four children are now co-proprietors of the staff. The elder Ricketts is also an influential political donor who has used millions endorsing Republican candidates. He donated $1 million to Donald Trump’s 2016 marketing campaign.

Ricketts’ son, Pete Ricketts, grew to become the governor of Nebraska in 2015. One more son, Todd Ricketts, is the finance chairman for Trump’s 2020 marketing campaign. 

Daughter Laura Ricketts is an LGBTQ activist and Democrat. She sits on the Nationwide Management Council of Lambda Authorized, an LGBTQ advocacy corporation.

The email messages in concern date from 2009 to 2013, according to Splinter. The messages are chain email messages containing many references to anti-Muslim conspiracy theories, these types of as the broadly circulated fantasy that former President Barack Obama is secretly a Muslim. Joe Ricketts would evidently ahead these chain email messages to good friends and loved ones, often incorporating his have (generally bigoted) remarks. 

In an electronic mail responding to an short article about “Radical Islam,” Joe Ricketts evidently wrote that Muslims are “naturally my (our) enemy” and that Islam is “dangerous aspect in our culture.” In a different responding to untrue promises that Obama favored Muslims more than Christians and Jews, Joe Ricketts reportedly wrote that there is a continued “assault on Christianity in The usa.”

The email messages also contained racist jokes about Latinx People and black People. In just one, Joe Ricketts evidently wrote that he was “tired” of “Political Correct, Multicultural and Diversity facets of our society.”

Joe Ricketts appeared to have obtained some pushback from some who obtained the email messages. In just one, foreseeable future-Gov. Pete Ricketts inspired his father to study the anti-Muslim promises on snopes.com ahead of passing them on. In reaction, Joe Ricketts wrote: “Thanks Peter. Having said that, I imagine Islam is a cult and not a faith. Christianity and Judaism are are dependent on really like whilst Islam is dependent on ‘kill the infidel’ a factor of evil.”

Joe Ricketts claimed in a statement on Monday that he regrets and apologizes for “some of the exchanges I experienced in my email messages.”

“Sometimes I obtained email messages that I must have condemned. Other situations I have claimed items that really don’t reflect my worth technique,” Joe Ricketts wrote in the statement. “I strongly believe that bigoted tips are mistaken.”

In this April 12, 2010 file photo, the Ricketts family poses before the Chicago Cubs baseball home opener against the Milwauk



In this April 12, 2010 file image, the Ricketts loved ones poses ahead of the Chicago Cubs baseball household opener versus the Milwaukee Brewers in Chicago. From still left are Cubs board member Laura Ricketts, Joe Ricketts, Marlene Ricketts, board member Todd Ricketts, board Chairman Tom Ricketts and board member Pete Ricketts. 

Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts sought to distance himself from his father’s views.

“Let me be obvious: The language and views expressed in these email messages have no location in our culture,” Tom Ricketts wrote in a statement attained by ESPN. 

“My father is not concerned with the procedure of the Chicago Cubs in any way,” he continued. “I am trusted with representing this corporation and our admirers with a regard for persons from all backgrounds. These email messages do not reflect the society we have labored so difficult to construct at the Chicago Cubs due to the fact 2009.” 

Rehab informed HuffPost that he believes that Tom Ricketts’ apology is an “important first step” and that the chairman seems to be “genuine” in his outreach to nearby Muslims. He was more skeptical about Joe Ricketts’ apology.

“Many persons are pondering if Joe’s apology is for these horrific views getting leaked, vs . getting held for so lengthy,” Rehab claimed. 

In this Oct. 2, 2014 photo, Joe and Marlene Ricketts attend a political debate in Lincoln, Nebraska. 



In this Oct. 2, 2014 image, Joe and Marlene Ricketts show up at a political debate in Lincoln, Nebraska. 

Cubs admirers who are Muslim have been expressing their disappointment about Ricketts’ email messages online.

Kamran Hussain, president of Chicago’s Muslim Neighborhood Centre and a self-professed “15 12 months year ticket-holder and lifelong die-difficult Cub supporter,” claimed Joe Ricketts’ apology appeared insincere. He requested the billionaire to show up at a meeting with nearby Muslims future week.

“I really like the Cubs and I have cherished them due to the fact 1983 and I have been with them as a result of all the ups and downs and just as I want my children to be good Muslims, it is also very crucial that they mature up to be Cubs admirers and appreciate their summers in Chicago at Wrigley Discipline,” Hussain wrote in an open letter on Tuesday.

He extra: “Being a baseball supporter can be heartbreaking in itself if your staff does not win the final sport of the year, and it is heartbreaking to know that the staff you have cherished at any time due to the fact you are a kid has sentiments joined to it in the way that was represented by Mr. Joe Ricketts.”

Rimsha Ganatra, a different faithful Cubs supporter, claimed Tom Ricketts’ apology was not more than enough. She prompt that Cubs host a Muslim American night time at Wrigley Discipline, with halal food and prayers. The New York Mets place on a very similar themed night time for their Muslim admirers final 12 months. 

“Before each individual sport of the 2016 World Sequence I used an additional 30 minutes praying for the Cubs to win,” Ganatra wrote in a tweet on Monday. “I went to a Cubs sport final summertime exactly where Louie at the entrance gate fulfilled me with the conventional Muslim greeting and permit me know to appear to him if anybody gave me trouble for my head scarf.”

“These are the supporter activities I want for current and foreseeable future generations of Muslim American baseball admirers to encounter, not the views unearthed by Joe Ricketts these days,” Ganatra claimed. 



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