MLB Giants Co-Owner Defends Himself Over Hyde-Smith Donation
MLB Giants co-Owner Charles Johnson yesterday defended himself "against charges that he is racist and criticized U.S. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith of Mississippi for her 'public hanging' comment," according to a front-page piece by Henry Schulman of the S.F. CHRONICLE. Johnson: "She said stupid things, particularly in Mississippi. I think the comments she made about the hanging was offensive.” Johnson also said that the "racist radio ad in Arkansas created by an organization to which he donated $1,000 was 'unacceptable,'" and that he has "made contributions to many African American office-seekers" over the years. While he "understands why Giants fans were upset with his two oft-criticized donations, he defended his role as one of the nation’s most prolific Republican donors." He also said that his spending has "nothing to do with the team, from which he has no plans to divest." Johnson: "On the whole, I don’t like the idea of politics affecting anything that I do with the Giants." Meanwhile, Schulman reports Oakland civil rights attorney John Burris yesterday "issued a statement calling off a boycott of the Giants that he had advocated, alongside NAACP San Francisco chapter president the Rev. Amos Brown and sociologist Harry Edwards." That news followed Johnson saying that he had "written to the Hyde-Smith campaign seeking a refund of the $5,400 that he and his wife, Ann, had donated to her campaign." Hyde-Smith won re-election via runoff Tuesday night (S.F. CHRONICLE, 11/29).