..is singer Ronan Tynan, of whom I probably would never have heard had he opened his mouth just for the purposes of singing.
Yankees fans were stunned after beloved “God Bless America” singer Ronan Tynan got himself tossed from tonight’s American League Championship game for making a nasty anti-Semitic remark.
The famous Irish tenor — who has become a iconic staple of New York Yankees playoff games for much of this decade — admitted to making the slur Thursday to a Jewish woman who was looking to buy an a apartment in his East Side building, a team spokeswoman said.
His gig singing for last night game was then cancelled. It was a move that even Yankees fans who loved the singer agreed with.
Irish tenor Ronan Tynan sings prior to Pope Benedict XVI Mass at Yankee Stadium. He was booted from the Yankees game tonight for making an anti-Jewish slur.
“If this true it’s and awful thing to say, and he shouldn’t sing,” Brian Dandeneau, 30, of Huntington, L.I., who is half-Jewish and who was at last night’s game.
“I though he was a nice, guy I’m surprised,” he added.
“That’s an ignorant thing to do, he’s an idiot,” added fan Vicky Bongiovanni, 53, of East Hanover, N.J. “He had a privilege that he could go out there and sing and I think it’s good they took it away from him.”
The alleged slur came while Dr. Gabrielle Gold-von Simson, an NYU Medical center pediatrician, was inspecting the building with a real estate agent and they bumped into the golden-throated team singer.
The agent joked to Tynan: “Don’t worry they are not Red Sox fans.”
And for some reason Tynan responded by saying: “I don’t care about that, as long as they are not Jewish.”
The burst of bigotry stunned Gold-von Simson, who said “Why is that?”
According to the team, Tynan said that a lot of “scary” Jewish ladies had been looking at the apartment before.
Outraged, Gold-von Simson, sent an angry e-mail to the Yankees yesterday, describing the incident to the team.
The team got in touch with Tynan as soon as they could, said spokeswoman Alice McGillion.
“He admitted that the contents of the e-mail were true,” McGillion said.
“He said it was a bad joke. So we told him that was absolutely intolerable behavior and he needed to apologize.
“He said he spoke to the woman an apologized.”
Despite the apology and the claims it was all a joke, the Yankees benched Tynan from his normal duties of singing “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch.
McGillion said that the tenor is not an Yankees employee, and there are “no plans for him to sing” for the team for the rest of the playoffs.
Tynan could not be reached for comment. But he told WNBC news: “A lot of my friends are Jewish. It’s something misfortunate, I was too stupid with my mouth.”
He said it was all a “big misunderstanding” and said “I’m not anti-Semitic and I have never been in my life.”
Message to those accused of being anti-Semitic: “Some of my best friends/a lot of my friends are Jewish” never helps your cause. Better to STFU in the first place.
Update: For someone who does not seem to like Jews, he sure looks like one: Tynan (above) vs Little Britain’s Matt Lucas (bottom).
Update: Another version of events that does not paint Tynan in quite the same light.