November 20, 2011

New Canadian Baseball Team Names Itself After Serial Killer

In London, Ontario, an new independent baseball team has named itself after a serial killer. The London Rippers of the Frontier League unveiled their new logo last Tuesday night. The slogan: "Lurking in Labatt Park this spring..."

Megan Walker, executive director of the London Abused Women's Centre, said that local response to the logo has been "overwhelmingly negative". She added that the team made its announcement on the same day the London community was wearing purple to show support for abused women.

Team owner David Martin said he didn't want to make the name "another fluffy animal [like] every other team seems to do". He wanted something "edgy", so he came up with "Diamond Jack". And while Martin claims that the connection to Jack the Ripper was never mentioned during the entire process, he admits that,
We knew it could be taken in different ways. Everybody has to be a little less sensitive and let our storyline play out.
A compromise name/logo has been suggested - centered on Fungo the Dog, who is part of Diamond Jack's backstory - but nothing has been decided.

Reid Cherner (NBC Sports):
When you name your baseball team the Rippers and you're from London, you might expect some blowback. Even if it's London, Ontario and you claim there is no connection to Jack the Ripper.
History Lesson!
"Jack the Ripper" is the best-known name given to an unidentified serial killer who was active in the largely impoverished areas in and around the Whitechapel district of London in 1888. ...

Attacks ascribed to the Ripper typically involved female prostitutes from the slums whose throats were cut prior to abdominal mutilations. ... Eleven separate murders, stretching from 3 April 1888 to 13 February 1891, were included in a London Metropolitan Police Service investigation, and were known collectively in the police docket as the "Whitechapel murders". ...

Most experts point to deep throat slashes, abdominal and genital-area mutilation, removal of internal organs, and progressive facial mutilations as the distinctive features of Jack the Ripper's modus operandi.
All right, kids! Who wants another hot dog?


johngoldfine said...

Yeah, but aside from the murders, rapes, and mutilations, what's the problem???

Kind of makes you wish they'd chosen some minority ethnic group or sexual orientation to demean!

laura k said...

Everybody has to be a little less sensitive

...especially about anything that doesn't bother me!

The slogan: "Lurking in Labatt Park this spring..."

This is really the capper. What a riot. Maybe for opening day, the players can take the field carrying machetes.

laura k said...

From the London Free Press story:

Wednesday, as the dust-up gathered momentum, Labatt Park's other ball team, the London Majors, appeared to score on the rookie team.

The Majors announced they're giving away free tickets in support of the London Abused Women's Centre, which criticized the Rippers' name.

allan said...

kellytindall of Montreal, Twitter:

"Who cares about the London Rippers? The Milwaukee Dahmers have been playing for years and nobody seems to care."