The San Jose Sharks came under intense fire on social media Wednesday after the team posted a pic that seemed to show a shark freeing slaves.
The tweet, posted by the team in commemoration of the Juneteenth holiday, showed a shark chomping through the chains of a slave.
The caption read, “Celebrate Freedom.”
sharks freed the slaves pic.twitter.com/STO0XAPdPY
— read ‘playing in the dark’ by toni morrison! (@queersocialism) June 16, 2021
The tweet lasted about two hours before the team felt the full backlash of angry Twitter users and deleted the post.
However, during the course of those two hours and for some time after, Twitter ridiculed the team for their “tone-deaf” post.
— Andrew Yang Slander Account 🚫 (@MNIMN_) June 16, 2021
NHL: With all of the madness in the NBA today, the Euro and sticky stuff in baseball, nobody is talking about hockey right now.
SAN JOSE SHARKS: Gimme a minute. pic.twitter.com/uAyyOoAD2O
— Mike Beauvais (@MikeBeauvais) June 16, 2021
Remember two hours ago, when you hadn't thought about the San Jose Sharks, in any capacity, for months? Ah, well.
— Jesse Spector (@jessespector) June 16, 2021
The Sharks are not the first major sports franchise to have their wokeness blow up in their faces. Shortly after the jury convicted former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin of second-degree murder in the death of George Floyd, the Las Vegas Raiders posted a tweet with a quote from Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd.
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) April 20, 2021
The Raiders tweet, as well, drew intense backlash.
The United States House of Representatives voted on Wednesday to make Juneteenth a national holiday. Juneteenth was first celebrated in Texas on June 19, 1865, when Union troops arrived in that state, and all enslaved people were made free under the terms of the Emancipation Proclamation.