J.D. Martinez 'didn't mean any harm' with Instagram post about Hitler and guns

In 2013, Boston Red Sox right fielder J.D. Martinez created an Instagram post with an image of Adolf Hitler giving a Nazi salute with the caption “To conquer a nation, first disarm it’s (sic) citizens.”

Martinez commented on the post “This is why I will always stay strapped! #thetruth

The rhetoric and Nazi imagery in the post are common fear tactics used by gun rights supporters to sway opinion against gun control. Martinez implied that he needed to “stay strapped” so he could fight back in the event of a Nazi-like government takeover in the United States.

Martinez’s gun rights post shows up years later

The post went unnoticed at the time, but like so many other social media posts by athletes from years past, recently resurfaced. He was 25 years old and a member of the Houston Astros when he made the post.

He addressed the post in an interview with The Boston Globe on Tuesday.

“I didn’t mean any harm by the pic,’’ Martinez told The Globe. “It was more of a picture showing what my stand was on the Second Amendment. At the time I posted that, the Second Amendment at the time was definitely a hot topic. The point of it wasn’t to offend anybody.”

While it’s clear that Martinez did not intend to endorse Hitler in the post, he clarified as much with The Post.

“As most of you guys know, I’m Cuban-American. Most of my family was run out of Cuba because of a brutal dictator. It’s terrible. It’s one of those things where I’ll never get to meet some of my family members because of it. It’s one of those things where, I was really touched at the time. I saw it and I posted it. I had no intent to offend anyone, but it was mostly just to state a point — a political point at the time that I believe in. I posted it and that’s one thing that, I love my country. I love this country. I stand by the Constitution and the Second Amendment. It’s something that I take pride in and it’s something that I’ll back up.”

Martinez doesn’t want distractions

Martinez went on to what’s become a familiar refrain from athletes whose old social media posts rise to the surface.

“I’m here to play baseball guys. I’m not a politician. I’m not here to talk about politics. I’m here to help us win. This was something that happened six years ago. In this day and age, it’s something where you really have to be really careful what you talk about. That’s why I don’t talk about politics. I don’t want this distraction.

As long as they’re out there, old social media posts by athletes will continue to remain a distraction from the task at hand. Martinez is having a career year on a championship contender, hitting .337 with 38 home runs and 110 RBI, putting him in legitimate running for a triple crown.

Surely, the last thing he wants to be doing right now is talking about Hitler.

24 PHOTOS
J.D. Martinez through his career
See Gallery
J.D. Martinez through his career
FT. MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 26: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Boston Red Sox reacts as he speaks during a press conference announcing his signing on February 26, 2018 at jetBlue Park at Fenway South in Fort Myers, Florida . (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
KISSIMMEE, FL - FEBRUARY 24: J.D. Martinez #94 of the Houston Astros poses during Photo Day on Thursday, February 24, 2011 at Osceola County Stadium in Kissimmee, Florida. (Photo by Robert Rogers/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 05: J.D. Martinez #14 of the Houston Astros plays the field against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the game on September 5, 2011 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 13: J.D. Martinez #14 of the Houston Astros stands in the dugout before the game against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park on June 13, 2012 in San Francisco, California. The San Francisco Giants defeated the Houston Astros 10-0. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
HOUSTON - JUNE 24: J.D. Martinez #14 of the Houston Astros motions upward as he crosses home plate after hitting a home run in the eighth at Minute Maid Park on June 24, 2012 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JULY 15: J.D. Martinez #14 of the Houston Astros warms up in the on-deck circle against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park on July 15, 2012 in San Francisco, California. Marwin Gonzalaez #9 scored on the play. The Giants won the game 3-2. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - JULY 7: J.D. Martinez #14 of the Houston Astros runs to first base after hitting the ball in the game against the Texas Rangers at Rangers Ballpark on July 7, 2013 in Arlington, Texas. The Texas Rangers defeated the Houston Astros 5-4. (Photo by John Williamson/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - APRIL 24: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers poses for a portrait prior to the game against the Chicago White Sox at Comerica Park on April 24, 2014 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the White Sox 7-4. (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
30 JUNE 2014: Detroit Tigers designated hitter J.D. Martinez (28) at bat during a regular season game between the Oakland Athletics and the Detroit Tigers played at Comerica Park in Detroit, MI. The Detroit Tigers defeated the Oakland A's 5-4 on a walk off grand slam in the ninth inning. (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon SMI/Corbis via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 2: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers reacts on the base paths after hitting a three-run home run during the ninth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on September 2, 2014 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 19: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers warms up prior to the game against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on June 19, 2015 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - JULY 04: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers takes a selfie with a United States Military Veteran during a pre-game ceremony to honor Independence Day prior to the game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Comerica Park on July 4, 2015 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Blue Jays 8-3. (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - JULY 21: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers looks on from the dugout during the game against the Seattle Mariners at Comerica Park on July 21, 2015 in Detroit, Michigan. The Mariners defeated the Tigers 11-9. (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
August 22, 2015: Detroit Tigers right fielder J.D. Martinez (28) throws after a runner during the game on Saturday evening, Comerica Park, Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Steven King/Icon Sportswire/Corbis via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 12: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers in action against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on June 12, 2016 in the Bronx borough of New York City. The Tigers defeated the Yankees 4-1. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - AUGUST 09: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers gestures as he crosses home plate following a solo home run against the Seattle Mariners in the fifth inning at Safeco Field on August 9, 2016 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - JUNE 16: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Detroit Tigers heads out to the field before a MLB game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Comerica Park on June 16, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Rays 13-4. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images)*** Local Caption *** J.D. Martinez
PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 21: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Arizona Diamondbacks talks with media on July 21, 2017 at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Sarah Sachs/Arizona Diamondbacks/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - AUGUST 19: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Arizona Diamondbacks bats against the Minnesota Twins on August 19, 2017 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Twins defeated the Diamondbacks 5-0. (Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 06: Arizona Diamondbacks Right field J.D. Martinez (28) looks on during an MLB game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Los Angeles Dodgers on September 6 2017 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - SEPTEMBER 24: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Arizona Diamondbacks celebrates with teammates after his game winning RBI single against the Miami Marlins during the ninth inning of MLB game at Chase Field on September 24, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Diamondbacks defeated the Marlins 3-2. (Photo by Sarah Sachs/Arizona Diamondbacks/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - OCTOBER 3: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Arizona Diamondbacks addresses the media prior to a postseason workout at Chase Field on October 3, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Sarah Sachs/Arizona Diamondbacks/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - OCTOBER 4: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Arizona Diamondbacks celebrates with teammates in the clubhouse after the Diamondbacks defeated the Colorado Rockies in the National League Wild Card at Chase Field on Wednesday, October 4, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
FT. MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 26: J.D. Martinez #28 of the Boston Red Sox reacts as he puts on a hat and jersey during a press conference announcing his signing on February 26, 2018 at jetBlue Park at Fenway South in Fort Myers, Florida . (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

More from Yahoo Sports:
Why an NFL QB left a $90M offer on the table
Bob Costas may be headed to the NBC exit
Steelers’ Bell on Labor Day return: ‘Fake news’
LeBron, Curry could break NBA records this year

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.