What if the Dodgers honored the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and nobody came?

Well, they did it.

The Dodgers went ahead with their plan to honor the Catholic- and Christian-mocking bigot group known the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence as community "heroes" last night...and just about nobody showed up.

The bleachers were almost empty — and among the few who did come, there was nothing but booing — loud enough to be reported.

The photos are astonishing.

Here's a screen shot from KTVU FOX 2'S report from YouTube:

KTVU's report is here.

And here's another view:

The report noted that the ceremony came before the fans were due to arrive for the game — which was obviously a bid by the Dodgers to keep the controversial gesture to the offensive group on the down-low.

It seemed like a smart move, given that the anti-Catholic bigot group being honored as "community heros" was met with boos from the few fans who actually were in the stadium.

That doesn't sound like a big groundswell of support. 

And according to this ABC News report at the 2:03 mark, the "sisters" actually promised a big turnout:

"The entire house plans to attend tonight's Dodgers game."

Sounds like a small house.

Turns out the Dodgers fans, or at least a lot of them, were outside the stadium in the parking lot, holding a vigil, which ABC7 reported they said was a prayer, not a protest.  The numbers can be seen here:

Screen shot from ABC7 video via YouTube.

It made sense, because even the date of the Dodgers' "hero" award to the group was insulting — coming on the same day as one of the holiest holidays in Catholic tradition, the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, was celebrated.  This was why among the crowd images, there were many hearts among the signs.

Screen shot from ABC7 video via YouTube.

As for those who supported the anti-Christian bigot group, well, note that in the KTVU FOX 2 report, they only seemed to be able to find supporters of the "sisters" in distant San Francisco, which is some three hundred miles away from the Los Angeles of the Dodgers.

It was weird.  They couldn't get anyone in West Hollywood to praise this group for them on camera?  They had to go to ground zero for all things gay: the Castro district in San Francisco?

That rather reminds me of the curious absence of boycotters in West Hollywood that I observed several years ago when there was a controversy over Chick-fil-A, and the end result was massive "buycott" turnout of the fans of the chicken sandwich outlet — including in West Hollywood.

The understory here is that this bigot group, which recently promoted itself with a pole-dancer writhing on a crucifix featuring a live crucified "Jesus" actor on Easter so as to offend Christians, doesn't seem to have a lot of public support from the fans of the Dodgers, who voted with their feet to stay away from this offensive spectacle.  KTVU quoted supporters of the prayer gathering, who were obvious Latinos — and it's very well known that Latinos make up the bulk of the Dodgers fan base, too.  That suggests that this spectacle isn't going over well with a gargantuan chunk of the Dodgers fans. 

Nobody saw it coming, but sure enough, it did.

What does it mean when you openly offend your fans?  Well, ask Bud Light.

That had to surprise the Dodgers, who went ahead with the offensive show despite the controversy it caused.

Controversies like this always cause reactions, big ones, and the recent downturns for Target, Kohl's, Bud Light, and others have laid out the warning.

That's brand damage, and it's entirely self-inflicted.

Maybe this can serve as a warning to the Dodgers organization that this kind of pandering to outright offensive bigot groups doesn't fill stadium seats.

KTVU noted at the very end of its report that the Dodgers seemed to have gotten at least some of it and planned to host a Christian family night at the end of July.

Let's see what that turnout looks like, too.  There should be some surprises for them there, too.

Image: Screen shot from KTVU FOX 2 video via YouTube.

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