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Not Impressed by ‘Batmanu’

Written by PETA | November 2, 2009

On Saturday, a bat found his or her way into the San Antonio Spurs game. (Some speculate that the animal didn’t just fly in by accident.) The bat, of course, did what anybody would do in such a terrifying, unfamiliar situation—try to get the heck out of there—which, naturally, delayed the game. Until, that is, Spurs guard Manu Ginobili smacked the bat out of the air and slammed the animal into the hardwood court. Sports blogs across the ‘net have been replaying the video of Manu in action as they celebrate his quick reflexes. / CC


Here’s our take on it:

To bludgeon a 4-ounce animal to death, it takes either a small man or a totally unthinking one—with no respect or consideration for lives humbler than his own. This is a time when athletes in particular need to be on their best behavior around any animal and show that they have brains and a heart, not just reactionary brawn.

Bats always try to avoid contact with humans, and there are plenty of easy ways to keep bats out of a basketball arena (or your home). We hope that the next time someone’s life is on the line, Manu Ginobili will take just a few seconds to think before he acts.

Written by Amanda Schinke

Commenting is closed.
  • Ozzy Osbourne says:

    Not the worst thing you could do to a bat.

  • Phlow says:

    Why are we blaming Manu and not the guy who brought the bat into the stadium in the first place?

  • me2 says:

    This is a perfect example of how out of touch PETA is. I find it offensive a charity exists for animals when there are still so many people dying of hunger in the world…

  • PigPal says:

    The ignorant sports blogger referenced in the PETA blog DID make a good point. The worst offender here is not the player but the person who released an innocent animal to an unnatural environment for a pointless Halloween stunt. There must be a better way to resume the game than inflicting fatal trauma on an innocent animal but unfortunately I read all the comments and did not see any practical suggestions. Experienced animal control officers have all kinds of tricks up their sleeves. One thing’s for sure the player would have been better off from a PR perspective if he hadn’t taken matters into his own hand.

  • salem mohammed says:

    I really appreciate PETA. We need organizations like this to make us think with kindness to other creatures that we share the planet with. Having said that I think it’s only natural for most humans to look upon bats and other harmful creatures like snakes and scorpions with fear and disgust. Snakes kill thousands of people in India every year. Bats outnumber people in San Antonio and they are feared and hated. Do you think the fans would’ve cheered if it was a dog that was swatted? No! It’s Human nature I will always kill a scorpion when I see it. P.S The bat lived.

  • manuel paredez says:

    the bat WAS still alive..i work there in the att center… it was released but should’ve been kept for testing.. since it had contact with a human……. c’mon people do some research…

  • Laurie says:

    Get over it!

  • Jane Ann Craig says:

    Mel and Alicia I doubt that anyone brought the bat into the arena as a Halloween prank and I know it was not a publicity stunt. Bats have been seen often inside the ATT Center. We have many bat colonies in central Texas and doors to the arena are often open for loading and unloading during repurposing for various events concerts hockey rodeos etc. I recall one bat flying about during a game last season I believe it was caught in the net. As for the mascot’s Batman costume it was left over from a promotion last season tied to the Batman movie. After play was stopped the first time the bat flew low over the court the Coyote put his Batman costume on and returned to the arena with the net but the bat did not reappear at that time. A few minutes later when the mascot had left the floor the bat reappeared. How do I know this? I was in the arena.

  • lynda downie says:

    Poor little bat. I see no cause to celebrate or admire Ginobili’s action. Funny thing that one’s reflexes reflect hisher inner attitude. One hot summer night I left my back door partly open and 2 bats came in. As they whizzed past my head several times looking for escape my instinct was to duck not bat them out of the air. I managed to get the door wide open and the little guys made their way out in about 20 minutes. Contrary to some opinions here I’ve no doubt that this unfortunate little bat could’ve been caught in a net and set free.

  • Ginobili says:

    Ginobiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii. I bet he play HB.

  • Cameron says:

    By the way to cheer everyone up the Bat was not injured and flew away. Instead the guy that you are accusing of killing him is instead being treated for rabies as we speak because the bat escaped and is doing fine as we talk. Yes he could’ve left the bat alone and maybe if you did leave them alone they would be ok but would you be ok if the bat did have rabies and bit some people in the crowded stadium?

  • James says:

    Are we being serious here people? There was a wild animal flying around in an area with thousands of people with a potential to infect them with rabies however remote the possibility was it was a possibility. The bat flew towards him and he instinctively acted. This is not murder. To bring this to a level of condemnation seems contrary to the purpose of spreading a message of understanding. This was a freakish occurrence that should not reflect completely on the views of Manu. I don’t know his personal views but they’re irrelevant. If you want to condemn the media coverage for lauding his skills so be it but to condemn him for a simple unintended act you’re doing far more damage than good.

  • the bat says:

    this whole action makes me think about the movie forest gump and the scene where the girl talks about wanting to be made a bird and fly far far away. i wish i was a bird and could fly far far away. hell do birds even get rabies? that would be even better if i was a bird since i could have pooped on a sacramento player’s head since i am a mexican free tail bat and we love san antonio.

  • tee says:

    It was just reported that Manu has to get a series of rabies shots now. So just think how that would have looked if the bat had found a baby in that stadium. Don’t judge until you know the whole story.

  • Danny Whitehead says:

    Hey it’s not as if the bat was killed or anything. I’m sure everyone is against hurting animals but what happened had to be done especially with an animal that fast. Plus all the germs + distraction from the game + anything else we can’t predict. Some people just overreact. I’m sure Amanda would do just the same if her child was in such a situation where the bat could potentially harm the child.

  • pete from sa tx says:

    The BAT WAS OK!! but it was just stunned it flew away when they took it out side it’s sooooo hard to catch a bat echo location is why how would he kno for sure that he was going to hit the bat he’s a human we all make mistakes so chill out don’t stress over something soooo minor People kill poor cats on purpose and light them on fire and stuff them in microwaves and bury them alive Which is efin horrible horrible I tell you compared to swatting a bat just becase Manu ginobli is famous they target him y’all petas should invest your money on catching cat killers in ur community

  • Max says:

    Excuse me Alicia but I am from Argentina. I read your comment and leaving aside all I can assume with it let me please ask you not to mention Argentina as a brutal country. Please don’t do it from the same country that unleashed the H bomb Napalm Babykillers etc. It’s not fair to judge a whole country based on what you think is wrong. The bat btw lived according to press releases. And finally let me educate you about some activities we have down here you will find Tango Soccer the best meat in the world I assume you are a vegetarian and may think eating other animals is wrong but that doesn’t make us brutal animal hating people anyway just wanted you to know that Bat Slapping is not one of the things we do around here. Best wishes and please remember ego cgito ergo sum.

  • Jamie says:

    think about it manu was at work…wouldnt you be a bit frustrated if you were sitting in your cubicle or wherever you work and a bat comes outta nowhere and makes it so you cant finish your job and go home to your family??

  • senorglory says:

    The Manu I know wouldn’t hurt a fly.

  • Brien Comerford says:

    Thank’s for the update. The NBA is not exactly a haven for animal lovers. Former player Jayson Williams made a bet that if were to lose he would kill his pet dog. The moral moron then shot his dog to death.

  • Courtney says:

    What a horrible thing to do! He clearly has no respect for animals.

  • ARG says:

    es from argentina thats the kind of stuff they do Posted by jason November 2 2009 0430 PM You are a fu.cking racist

  • Franz Blonde says:

    Take care specially when you talk about somebody as Manu Ginobili. Somebody who performs love acts each day..month…year..

  • Bong says:


  • Ethan says:

    Some of you really need to find some sort of perspective on life. 1. The bat didn’t die. 2. The bat could have been dangerous diseases etc. 3. The bat could have caused an accident simply due to fear panic 4. Comparing a bat and a human baby is just silly. I shouldn’t really have to explain that. If you’re going to compare it to a human you would have to compare it to an adult. 5. The writer’s logic explaining that there are ways to keep the bat out of the arena is faulty. The issue wasn’t keeping it OUT of the arena it was finding a way to REMOVE it from the arena. 6. Welcome to nature… where if a smaller animal annoys a larger predator it gets swatted. This is how nature is SUPPOSED to work. The world is not set up for humans to be the caretakers of the world… they’re simply higher up the food chain. 7. Bats outnumber people 101 ish in San Antonio… if you want people to take you seriously choose the worthwhile battles.


    I take back my earlier comments. After thinking about it Manu Ginobili should not have hurt a scared and defenseless creature. Yet seemingly this animal cruelty has been celebrated on forums by fans of his team. This is not far removed from Michael Vick’s killing of dogs. Just because the bat is not furry and someone’s pet doesn’t make it any less cruel.

  • Marie says:

    I agree that Manu was probably not intentionally trying to harm the bat but trying to swat it away to continue the game. Along with that having seen birds in the ATT Center before it is likely that a bat may have flown in especially since San Antonio has been seeing more of them in the city. SA has even started to build them into their culture much like Austin does where literally thousands live under a downtown bridge. It sucks the swat looked so violent but before attacking someone for reflexes let’s think a little bit.

  • Niles Chumney says:

    We have a lot of bats in SA and Texas is VERY bat friendly. There have been lots of bats and birds that enter the various arenas and large structures around town. Don’t slam Manu it was an amazing thing that unfortunately ended the way it did. You can’t really assume that the management would suspend play indefinately due to this unfortunate event. Worry about the whales or something!

  • John Edwards says:

    PETA is again over exaggerating this whole thing.

  • Dooj says:

    Not to mention they sprayed his hands with hand sanitizer immediately following. Think of the germs that are being killed!!!! We shouldn’t let that happen.

  • Drew Moore says:

    As a follower of San Antonio Spurs basketball I know what Manu Ginobili is about winning basketball games. Competing beating the other team. It is probably very true that he didn’t think about the bat when acting he merely wanted the game to continue. That being said questioning Ginobili’s manhood his dedication to being a role model to the community and other written insults against Ginobili will not accomplish the goal of the author. I’m assuming the author wants to preserve animal life not merely anger someone who has different opinions. So instead of hashing out disrespect how about we ask intelligent questions. Such as “Is it justifiable to value a game over the life of a bat?” “How would this action affect the younger fans of Ginobili?” Stuff like that… That way it’s an environment of growth and learning. Not annoying insults. That will accomplish exactly nothing.

  • Charles Barkley says:


  • jason says:

    hes from argentina thats the kind of stuff they do

  • Alicia says:

    Now I am not a basketball fan so this may be the norm but wasn’t it convenient that the mascot was wearing a batman getup or the fact he had a net? Publicity stunt gone bad maybe?!?

  • Mel says:

    Miranda nets do not easily catch bats the sonar they use to detect dangers would’ve caught that given how close it’d been to the bat. So… it’d flown away. And the stadium is in the middle of San Antonio making it even rarer you’d see bats there they prefer the country because it’s quieter. Larger animals? no they’d been caught long before they got anywhere near the stadium. I’m thinking some fan brought it in for a stunt which would at least be good for Manu so he wouldn’t have to get shots. Manu I’m sure was not happy about the bat for his own health as well as others. I will say however that unless you’ve come face to face with a bat flying around in your face you don’t know how scary or potentially rabid they are.

  • Quantum Ace says:

    For the record Manu did NOT kill the bat. It did manage to fly away when the stadium guy released it outside. I think he actually prevented the situation from becoming much worse. If the bat had bitten someone on national tv just think how much antibat sentiment that would have stirred up.

  • Laura says:


  • simara says:’s a TINY bat! and regardless of size to just slam it like that was sick.would it be okay if a baby ran onto the court and he slammed the baby?why is a human life regarded with SO much respect and a non human’s so disposable?especially when humans do the most destruction to eachother other species and the planet than any other creation..I would not be okay with this loser slamming a baby an innocent grown adult or a bat it is all one in the same. and people who do not realize this are missing a big part of their souls.

  • MH says:

    A bat once got into my office. It was hilarious. We got it out safely though.

  • Miranda says:

    I saw the play back on “sports highlights” and his face afterwards was AWFULhe just shrugged his shoulders like it was no big deal. I mean the mascot had a net why could no one use that instead? I mean come on if it was a cat dog or a pig they would have tried everything to calm it down and then remove from the game!What a jerk!!

  • Bruce Wayne says:

    Poor bat. Revenge will be mine!!!!

  • Mel says:

    Right on the money Kurt Manu respects animals to begin with comments here have never really seen what he does off the court. And frankly if the animal is rabid he’s going to have to get shots just because he handled the animal. Those are quite painful so for those here at PETA who wish him pain and such you’ll get your wish when he goes through those.

  • vince says:

    for being people that are supposed to be loving towards all creatures you really are expressing a lot of hate towards one.

  • icuwoot says:

    I love reading the comments on here.

  • cal says:

    What a loser he is…. and he think’s he’s a real man! Listen up jerk… you must have a small ..well you get it!!!!

  • Michael Essi says:

    A 6’6″ 210 pound man never looked so small until I read this!

  • Tula says:

    He has set a really bad example for younger fans if he is a real ‘man’ he will apoligise for this stupid act.

  • Kurt K says:

    I see nothing wrong with what he did. He didn’t slam the bat down on purpose. It looks like in the video the bat just got caught on his hand and the motion of the swat propelled the bat into the ground. Aftarwards he picked it and handed it to a arena worked. If wanted to be cruel he could have stepped on the bat or picked it back up and slammed it into the ground again. Well he didn’t do that. Cut the guys some slack.

  • Mike Quinoa says:

    What a tool. He may have done it reflexively without thinkinghopefully next time his brain will be faster than his hands.