Terry Frei, a veteran sportswriter for the Denver Post, seemed to ask, how dare he? After all, the event was held on Memorial Day, May 29, a day set aside to venerate American war dead from all of its wars, including our war against Japan, 1941 – 1945. Terry Frei’s father fought in that war.Yes, there are still children of Pacific War veterans who heard stories about the way the Japanese conducted that war, but columnist Robert Arvay takes the column in a strange direction.
What if the winner of the 500 had been a German? What if Frei had remarked, I don’t feel comfortable about a German winning the Indy 500 on Memorial Day? Would that have been a racist remark?Die Gedanken sind frei.
Perhaps Frei would never have made the remark had the subject person been a German. If not, then one might insinuate anti-Asian racism into his motive. But it is entirely thinkable that, had a German won, some news writer somewhere, let’s say of German descent, would have thought the irony worth a mention.