The Marlins quickly distanced themselves from Guillen’s remarks, releasing a statement saying, “There is nothing to respect about Fidel Castro. He is a brutal dictator who caused unthinkable pain for more than 50 years. We live in a community filled with victims of his dictatorship and the people in Cuba continue to suffer today.”
Those potential fans are now loudly calling for him to be fired.
Leaders of Miami’s Cuban community have come out in force against Guillen and the Marlins. Miami’s city commission chair released a statement saying Guillen should lose his job for his “admiration for a dictator who has destroyed the lives of so many and who has violated the basic human rights of millions.”
Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Giminez, while not explicitly calling for Guillen’s removal, condemned the Marlins manager’s remarks and urged the Marlins to take “decisive steps to bring this community back together.”
The Cuban-American group Vigilia Mambasa, a virulently anti-Castro organization, picketed outside of Marlins Park Tuesday and plans to boycott the Marlins organization until Guillen is removed.
Guillen’s five-game unpaid suspension won’t be enough for these groups, and it’s comparatively small potatoes in a 162-game Major League Baseball regular season. If the suspension holds as-is, he’ll be back to work next Tuesday, when the Marlins host the Chicago Cubs.