Brooklyn, NY – Yankees Drop The Ball In Bias Incident At Stadium, Charges Orthodox Jewish Fan


    FILE - Flatbush resident Benjamin LapinBrooklyn, NY – What should have been a relaxing, informal business meeting at Yankee Stadium turned into something far more disturbing, as an Orthodox Jewish father of five had his yarmulka removed by a drunk fan who taunted him briefly before giving it back.

    Flatbush resident Benjamin Lapin, a lifelong fan of the Bronx Bombers, said it was an uneventful night as he and a business associate were seated in premium seats three rows away from left field on September 12th. According to Lapin, things changed dramatically in the ninth inning when the fan seated directly behind him returned from the restroom, and after bragging to his friends that he had just gotten into an argument with a Dodgers fan and had thrown his beer on the floor, the unidentified man removed Lapin’s yarmulka from his head.

    Lapin turned around to confront the man, while his business associate, unaware of the unfolding events, continued to watch the game, with the Yankees down by several runs.

    “I said to him, ‘What’s your problem? Are you drunk?’” Lapin told VIN News.

    Lapin said that the man admitted that he was intoxicated and then remarked, “I just want you to know I have nothing against Jews.”

    Lapin’s requests for the return of his yarmulka fell on deaf ears, with the man behind him holding his yarmulka out of his reach before finally returning it less than a minute later. Both the man and his friends, who had been drinking beer and cheering for the Yankees throughout the night, left the stadium immediately afterwards.

    Unwilling to ruin the night for his associate, Lapin sat through the remaining five minutes of the game and then sought out stadium security to discuss the incident.

    “They handed me off from one person to another with each one getting all defensive and saying, ‘that’s not my section,’” said Lapin. “I told them that it was a hate crime and this guy has to be prosecuted or he will do it again but it was late and they just wanted to go home”

    Lapin was given an email address to contact the next day and three days later, a member of the Yankees’ guest services team emailed him an apology and an offer of free tickets to a future baseball game.

    “I told them strongly, this isn’t about tickets,” said Lapin. “I told them, you guys have the footage. If he had stabbed me, you would know right away who it is was. This can’t be allowed to happen.”

    Lapin expressed disappointment in the Yankees’ attempt to downplay of the incident, saying that the culprit should be reprimanded for his actions.

    “The whole way home I felt humiliated,” said Lapin. “There were lots of Jewish people wearing caps and hiding their yarmulkas, but we should be proud to wear our yarmulkas at a game and we should feel protected. The Yankees should take this seriously. I don’t want him to get away with this because next time he could do this to a kid.”

    In a press release sent out today, Assemblyman Dov Hikind chastised the Yankees for “striking out” in their response to the situation.

    “If a Muslim woman was sitting there and someone took her hijab, can you imagine what the reaction from the public would be,” queried Hikind. “We need to send a clear message that there is no place for this type of behavior anywhere.”

    VIN News contacted the Yankees for a comment on the situation, but no response was available in time for publication.

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      • That drunky didnt take of the cap of the next guy he grabbed the yarmulka CUZ he does hate jews and he only said he doesn’t cuz he knew if he will charged for hate he said i dont hate jews but its BS, he should be banned from the losing yankee stadium

    1. Wow. A fan got a little drunk and rowdy at a baseball game and grabbed a yarmulka. He practically apologized right on the spot. Wht don’t we involve the FBI and Secret Service in this case? After all, there are no more pressing things for them to be taking care of.

    2. Get a life. A drunk takes your yarmulke and returns it 1 minute later and you insist that there be an investigation. “What if he had stabbed me”? Well, then it would have be a stabbing, and if he’d set off a bomb it would have been a bombing. But guess what, it wasn’t any of those things.

      Life isn’t perfect and neither are people. Don’t be a crybaby.

    3. There should have been a much stronger condemnation to prevent further incidents and he probably should have been banned from the stadium for a while. But prosecute? Maybe for public drunkenness and I realize Lapin is very upset and I would be too but the man was drunk and there were no anti-Semitic slurs or violence threatened. I don’t really know that there was a “hate crime” here.

    4. The guy was drunk and being goofy. He clearly said that he had nothing against Jewish people. Seems like you’re insulted he took your yarmulke, not everything is a hate crime. ps. did u take the tickets ?

    5. he returned the yarmulke less then a minute later and was clearly drunk. He also said the following, “I just want you to know I have nothing against Jews.” …..whats next ?, maybe sue the yankees for not providing you with a minyan for mincha.

    6. To those excusing this behavior because he was drunk; Really?? So A drunk driver that killed someone should be let off because they were drunk?. That’s your rationale. And it was just a yarmulka?? Maybe you’re embarrassed to wear one and don’t care for it. So take it off. Shame on you. For the rest of us, it represents something- which is why it’s worn. This should not be tolerated.

    7. Ben Lapin should be congratulated for speaking out against an antisemetic action .Maybe the people who wrote the first few comments should live in France where our brothers are afraid to walk with a yarmulke..Am yisrosel chai !

    8. ““If a Muslim woman was sitting there and someone took her hijab, can you imagine what the reaction from the public would be”

      I am a Sephardic Jewish woman who wears a head scarf and so do my married daughters. We are harassed and threatened nearly every day as we go about our business shopping, going to work, etc.

      The reaction from the public is to support those who are harassing us.

    9. Shomrim beat up and blinded a poor black kid and nothing happened and you expect something from the Yankees because a drunk took your yarmulka and immediately returned it with an apology?

    10. This Jew is a sick disgusting person. So now we have a whining baby who got free tickets. I would be ashamed to show my face after making a stink out of such a idiocy (and yes, my Yarmulke was taken off my head once and I didn’t make an issue).

      It is shoitim like him who give the chareidim a bad name, and make a chilul hashem.

      I hope the Yankees ban this Jewish whiner from any future games.

    11. Gimme a break is right. This guy is “unwilling to ruin the night” for his associate so he sits through the game and then complains? He’s probably disappointed he wasn’t given free seasons tickets or something

    12. Lapin created a chillul Hashem by making a mountain out of a molehill of a trivial incident. How about using your fists to get back your yarmulke? You’re a young adult. Why didn’t you punch out the sheigetz? Lapin, you give the impression that all Jews are nebech, weaklings and cowards. Shame..

    13. Just wondering why the comments from disagreeing readers have to be so disparaging. They could also send their exact same message of disapproval but while speaking respectifully and acknowledging to this man that he truly felt hurt and concerned of a repeat. Perhaps even help him understand where his own reaction was coming from and from there analyze what, if any, response would be best from an unbiased view.

    14. I’ve been to Yankee Stadium literally hundreds of times with a yarlmuka and I’ve never even encountered a hint of animosity from anyone (b’h). There are 3 kosher hot dog stands and even a minyan for maariv sometimes. The fact that some drunken idiot was acting like a drunken idiot has nothing to do with the Yankee org, what are they supposed to do?? This shouldn’t be made into a big deal imo. Compare this to France or anywhere else in Europe where a Jew would probably get stabbed for attending a soccer game with a Kippah on then this seems pretty darn mild in comparison. Thank G-d we live in a tolerant and great city

    15. kudos to Lapin for speaking out so to protect future incidents to people who cant speak for themselves. You people that are making fun of lapin are way to shallow to see the depth of what hes trying to do here and to what has happened. When it strikes home you will MAYBE understand


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