NFL Owners Prove They Are Still Trump’s Racist Cronies
"These injustices are so widespread as to seem practically written into our nation's DNA," said Doug Baldwin, Anquan Boldin, Malcolm Jenkins and Benjamin Watson.
President Trump recently suggested that NFL players give him a list of people they believe were wronged by the justice system. If Trump agrees, he said earlier this month, he will "pardon them or at least let them out." How did NFL owners respond? They didn't.
That the league and its owners allowed this to happen without their comment is complicit racism.
Demographics are important here. According to a report from The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport (TIDES), the NFL's players are nearly 70 percent Black. In sharp contrast, quarterbacks are only 19 percent Black. Head coaches are only 21.9 percent Black. There is not a single Black owner of a team.
In an op-ed for the New York Times, Doug Baldwin, wide receiver for the Seattle Seahawks; Anquan Boldin, a former NFL wide receiver; Malcolm Jenkins, safety for the Philadelphia Eagles; and Benjamin Watson, tight end for the New Orleans Saints, responded to Trump's ludicrous suggestion.
There are 82,000 people in federal prisons for drug charges, and 200,000 in state prisons, according to the Prison Policy Initiative. According to the NFL players' article, 13.5 percent of those in federal prison are sentenced to two decades or more behind bars. For Trump to suggest that the players start ticking off names of people who should be let out is not only absurd but an impossible task.
Not only that, the offer completely misses the mark. The men, also all members of the Players Coalition, write: "These are problems that our government has created, many of which occur at the local level. If President Trump thinks he can end these injustices if we deliver him a few names, he hasn't been listening to us."
White Billionaire NFL Owners Have Secret Insider Meeting to Discuss how Much Further They Can Jam it up Black Players’ Behinds
Apparently no discussion on how to improve the 70 percent Black player/20 percent Black coach/0 percent Black owner plantation problem.
The men cite police brutality against Black men, racism embedded deep in the criminal justice system, segregation and disparities in education as issues that need to be addressed:
"These injustices are so widespread as to seem practically written into our nation's DNA. We must challenge these norms, investigate the reasons for their pervasiveness and fight with all we have to change them. That is what we, as football players, are trying to do with our activism."
Taking a few specific wrongs and making them right does nothing to correct the root of these problems.
The players applaud the president for granting clemency to 63-year-old Alice Johnson, who was given a life sentence for a first-time nonviolent drug offense. But the problem is that she received such an unjust punishment in the first place.
"The president could stop that from happening by issuing a blanket pardon for people in that situation who have already served long sentences," the men note.
(Notably, the president only granted clemency to Johnson, a grandmother who spent more than two decades in prison, after a public plea from Kim Kardashian West — making the decision seem more like a photo op than the start of broader change.)
According to the Sentencing Project, 1 in 3 Black men born in 2001 will end up in prison at some point in their lives — compared to 1 in 17 white men. Black men are more likely to be arrested in the first place, convicted and serve longer prison terms. And of those in prison, 1 in 9 are serving a life sentence — with about a third not eligible for parole.
Overall, people of color make up 67 percent of the incarcerated population — but just 37 percent of the population overall.
The disparities are hard to ignore — but apparently not for Trump and the NFL owners.
However, the men stated they — unlike the NFL's leadership — will not be complicit in their ongoing fight for social justice.
"President Trump, please note: Our being professional athletes has nothing to do with our commitment to fighting injustice. We are citizens who embrace the values of empathy, integrity and justice, and we will fight for what we believe is right. We weren't elected to do this. We do it because we love this country, our communities and the people in them. This is our America, our right."
Two years after former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick took a knee, some people still don't get the point. One of those people currently resides in the White House, and others are in charge of Kaepernick's entire platform.
Free Daily Newsletter
We won't share your email with anyone.
Each year in the U.S., police kill more than 300 Black men and women — at least a quarter of them unarmed.
(Reuters) — Police killings of unarmed Black people are associated with worse mental health for Black Americans across the country, even when they have no direct connection to the deaths, a study suggests.
The video caption reads, "Donald Trump's not-so-secret admiration for Vladimir Putin plays out in a teenager's bedroom."
The New York Times' animated cartoon depicting Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin as gay lovers has gone viral, being viewed more than 1.3 million times on Twitter alone. But the newspaper is facing backlash from LGBTQ advocates calling the cartoon "homophobic."
Family separation has cost $200 million that was ripped away from other funds.
Bigotry comes at a cost — and we're talking about more than karma here.
"While the Americans with Disabilities Act has helped close many gaps, employment is not one of them."
By Carol Glazer, President of the National Organization on Disability and Jesse Fryburg, Program Manager, National Organization on Disability
On July 26, 1990, the president of the United States looked into a television camera on the South Lawn of the White House and proclaimed that the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) "signals the end to the unjustified segregation and exclusion of persons with disabilities from the mainstream of American life." Twenty-eight years later, it has not.
Free Daily Newsletter
We won't share your email with anyone.
Houston, we have a problem. This family has suffered enough.
For 21 years, Margaret Roberts served her city as a firefighter. She put her life on the line almost daily and wanted to retire after fulfilling her duties.