Terry Frei, a sportswriter for the Denver Post, was fired over Memorial Day weekend for tweeting that he felt ‘uncomfortable’ that a Japanese driver won Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.
Shortly after Japanese Indy Car driver Takuma Sato’s victory at the Indy 500, Frei tweeted the offensive remarks, saying:
“Nothing specifically personal, but I am very uncomfortable with a Japanese driver winning the Indianapolis 500 during Memorial Day weekend,” he wrote.
The tweet sparked immediate outrage on Twitter. First, Frei tried to double down on his insensitive remarks, tweeting: “THIS is what Memorial Day is about. Dave Schreiner’s death in Battle of Okinawa. Not for squeamish or ‘sensitive.’
After his second tweet caused an even further backlash, Frei attempted to apologize, albeit halfheartedly, by merely tweeting ‘I apologize’. He has since deleted that tweet.
Frei finally decided to tweet a full statement, attempting to explain his insensitive tweets:
The Denver Post released a full statement on Frei’s employment:
We apologize for the disrespectful and unacceptable tweet that was sent our by one of our reporters. Terry Frei is no longer an employee of The Denver Post. It’s our policy not to comment further on personnel issues.
The tweet doesn’t represent what we believe nor what we stand for. We hope you will accept our profound apologies.
Frei, who has published 8 sports books and written for The Sporting News, The Portland Oregonian, and Rocky Mountain News, has not commented since being fired.
UPDATE: The Denver Post's statement on Terry Frei https://t.co/HPYG08nOe9
(corrects typo from earlier version) pic.twitter.com/3ROSPSsELE
— The Denver Post (@denverpost) May 29, 2017
As for Sato, he became the first Asian driver to win the Indy 500.