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- The Fresno Grizzlies, a minor league baseball team, aired a Memorial Day tribute video that featured Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez among dictators like Kim Jong-un and Fidel Castro.
- The Grizzlies organization swiftly apologized and said they did not properly vet the video before showing it at a Monday game.
- Ocasio-Cortez has become a frequent target of right wing groups and critics.
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A minor league baseball team in Fresno, California apologized to Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York after airing a video during a Memorial Day game on Monday that featured the congresswoman in the same light as brutal tyrants like North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and Fidel Castro, the late former ruler of Cuba.
The nearly four-minute video featured at the Triple-A Fresno Grizzlies game mashed up a speech from former President Ronald Reagan with patriotic images and pictures of the US military.
But about three minutes into the video, which is posted on YouTube by a user named "Emilio Espejo," the images shift to depict adversaries of the US, including Kim, Castro, Antifa gangs, and Ocasio-Cortez.
The Grizzlies, an affiliate of MLB’s Washington Nationals, quickly apologized in a statement to the Fresno Bee newspaper.
"We are aware of the problem with the Memorial Day tribute video shown in the ballpark between games of Monday’s doubleheader," the statement read. "A pre-produced video from outside our front office was selected; unfortunately what was supposed to be a moving tribute ended with some misleading and offensive editing, which made a statement that was not our intent and certainly not our opinion."
The Grizzlies added they did not fully vet the video before broadcasting it throughout the stadium.
"We apologize to our fans and to our community for the error and for not properly vetting the video. We also apologize to those who have served and are currently serving the country for the undue distraction on such a solemn day," the statement read. "We’re embarrassed we allowed this video to play without seeing it in its entirety first. We unconditionally apologize to Rep. Ocasio-Cortez in addition to those we hurt. It was a mistake and we will ensure that nothing like it ever happens again."
A spokesperson for Ocasio-Cortez was not immediately available for comment.
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