If a team decides that they would rather not have couples kissing in their ballpark, that’s their prerogative. Perhaps the owner of the team thinks the act of kissing or other romantic behavior is inappropriate in front of young children, which depending on the particular act could be a legitimate concern. What is not acceptable, however, is holding gay and lesbian couples to a different standard.
On Tuesday, Hardball Talk passed along a story about two women, Taylor Campione and Kelsi Culpepper, who have filed a discrimination complaint against an unnamed Target Field security guard. According to City Pages in the Twin Cities, Campione and Culpepper claim they exchanged a “brief kiss” when parting ways as Culpepper had to use the restroom. Campione was then approached by a security guard wearing a Twins hat.
“I saw you kissing that girl, you can’t do that,” Campione claims the staff member said. When she protested and responded that she can kiss whomever she wants, the gentleman (loose term) told her that they “don’t play grab ass” at the stadium and instead “adhere to the 10 Commandements.”
Kevin Smith, a spokesman for the Twins, said the security guard has been reprimanded and called his behavior “unacceptable,” although he will keep his job as of now thanks to a previously blemish-free record.
In the era of Dance Cams and Kiss Cams, security guards obviously can’t be projecting their personal beliefs upon fans at the ballpark. If players like Sean Avery and Steve Nash are making an effort to convince people that gay athletes on professional sports teams would be no big deal, it is important for staff members to cooperate and not convey a contradictory message. Sadly though, this goes hand-in-hand with the kind of comments David Tyree sadly made regarding gay marriage.