Remember that sweet, new stadium the Giants and Jets are going to share in Jersey starting next season (or the season after because, really, who cares?)? The one in which they’re going to start charging fans for seat licenses on top of their season tickets? You know, because everyone has tons of extra money in one of the most expensive real estate areas in the world. Well, turns out one of the potential corporate names for the monument to NFL and corporate greed stadium had ties to the Nazis during World War II. Really, really strong Nazi ties. Not the bad, but still kinda funny ones like that F1 scandal.
Allianz, a financial company based in Munich, had a CEO who was Hitler’s economic minister during The Fuhrer’s run as Keith Olbermann’s Worst Person In The World in the 1930s and 1940s. According to an article on Yahoo! there’s even pictures of the CEO of Allianz from back then in an SS uniform giving the old “my allegiance is thiiiiiiis tall” salute to Hitler. Of course the modern Allianz isn’t Nazi-affiliated. We think. We hope.
I’m not an expert in public relations, but I’m pretty sure that naming a stadium NEAR NEW YORK after a German company with Nazi ties might not be the greatest idea ever. Some may even call this kind of thing a “disaster.” I, for example, am one of these people. What’s next, are they going to build a new facility for the Pro Bowl in Oahu and name it Emperor Hirohito Stadium?
It could have been worse, though. They could have named it Allianz Stadium and THEN found out the Swastika-wearing krauts were fans of Allianz. To be fair to Allianz, they also are the corporate name of Bundesliga giant Bayern Munich’s awesome stadium. OK, so that’s in Germany too, but still, Bayern is comfortable with it, right? OK, bad example.
In the future, teams should maybe do a little more investigation before possibly getting into bed with companies to name their stadia. Invesco, for example, isn’t even an American company anymore (thanks TMQ!). Right after naming the Broncos’ stadium, they moved right the hell offshore and took their stock listing to London. As far as Allianz goes, if I were the person in charge of figuring out what faceless corporation is going to name my stadium, I’d like to think my first clue there might be something up with Allianz is THEY’RE FROM GERMANY. How do you start talking to a German company but not check to see if they have Nazism in their past? Is Volkswagon the backup name for the new stadium? I saw Inside Man so I know all about evil financial companies. Come on, people.