An ESPN racing reporter apologized a day after his tweets criticizing Formula 1 driver Sergio Perez went viral.
In a fascinating glimpse at just how personally a media member should be taking interactions with the athletes they’re covering, Miguel González tweeted on Saturday that Perez had “snubbed” his child for an autograph request. The incident took place at a restaurant, with González throwing some impossibly harsh words Perez’s way.
El niño esperó a que terminaran y salieran para no ser impertinente, qué pena que te moleste que un niño te pida una foto, aunque estás en todo tu derecho de negarla @SChecoPerez
Por cierto la basura de la mesa se recoge. La educación también se enseña y se aprende en familia.
— Miguel González (@mg_michel) April 8, 2023
A quick translation:
Thanks to @SChecoPerez for ignoring and turning your back on my son when they were leaving the restaurant. Incredulous, I approached you to ask if you could take a picture with him and you denied it saying that you came with your family. This time the tears you provoked were not from emotion. 1/2
The child waited for them to finish and leave so as not to be impertinent, what a pity it bothers you when a child asks you for a photo, although you have every right to deny it @SChecoPerez By the way, the garbage on the table is collected. Education is also taught and learned as a family.
Listen, would it be nice if Sergio Perez had been able to offer a photo with this kid? Sure. That’d be great. But at the same time, there’s no world in which celebrities/athletes/etc. are required to do something like that for fans, especially when they’re out with their own family.
Where things get weird, though, is that González is a member of the sports media. Going public with a thread criticizing an athlete for not giving your kid an autograph or selfie chance is not usually the best approach or understanding. To González’s credit, he seemed to realize it, especially after the tweet took off, submitting an apology on Sunday (and replying to the initial thread with it.)
Hoy me toca ofrecer una sincera disculpa a @SChecoPerez insisto en que él está en todo su derecho. Mi reacción fue equivocada.
— Miguel González (@mg_michel) April 9, 2023
Again, a quick translation:
Today I have to offer a sincere apology to @SChecoPerez…I insist that he is within his rights. My reaction was wrong. Sincere apology.
Credit here to González for not equivocating here. The whole thing should have never happened, but at least it didn’t linger and it’s hard to offer a better apology.
A reminder to everyone, not just media members (although maybe especially media members): you don’t have to bother famous people.