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Friday, January 24, 2014

Richard Sherman and the ever evolving N-word.


It has been almost a week since Sherman gave his adrenaline laced pro-wrestlingesque interview to Erin Andrews and I thought by now the indignation and analysis would have died down. I guessed wrong. I opened up my espn.com app to see these words "Goodell not a fan of Sherman's comments" Really? Now the commissioner has to weigh in on a post-game interview that included zero curse words, zero references to gender, orientation, age, lifestyle etc. etc. None of the usual trigger words that one would think would require a pronouncement from on high. In fact it was not even a white CB vs a Black WR or vice versa (okay, okay you do not need to point out that there is no way it could have been a White Corner Back…that is a different discussion) I am just saying there were no racial implications in Sherman's insult of Crabtree except one – 'The Angry black man'.

Let's make it clear, I do not think Sherman is an angry black man, I am saying that I have seen him labelled as such in many venues, for giving a hyped up post-game interview or RANT as it is so unnecessarily being called. I have never seen a proclamation from Goodell on any PhillipRivers post game or (as is often) in game trash talking. I never saw Goodell discuss the instance of Phillip running down the sidelines yelling at the opposing team's bench in a 'menacing' manner. You could also say the stakes were never as big as the Super Bowl (but that would be me just taking shots at my Charger Friends…hey guys – Still no Super bowl???? Ouch). 

This is not an anti-commish post, in fact he should not have been asked the question, but once asked did he have to resort to such coded language (even if he did not realize it or mean to) as "He is extremely well-spoken"? Why am I never told how "well-spoken" the white trash talker is? Why am I never reminded of the great college the white player went to? Should it not be impressive that Tom Brady went to Michigan a difficult college to get into (or reminded of his child out of wed-lock)? Should I not be impressed by how "well-spoken" he is right after he and his coach pointed out that they targeted a defensive player because they knew he was easy to beat?

Sherman has been called a thug in so many places that Deadspin.com even took note of the number of occurrences "The day after the Seahawks' win, the word "thug" was uttered 625 times on American television, or more than on any single day in at least three years."

 Hmm why on earth would it need to be said that many times about a guy who had just made the play that saved his team's season and voiced a NON-VIOLENT opinion about his competitor? I know it was certainly not used because he was wrong – Crabtree is not a mediocre receiver, but what if he was mediocre? Would we then have seen all this uproar?

As Sherman himself has stated, the use of thug has just become the new way of saying the N-word to him. Now not everyone saying he is a thug means to call him a n-word, but a lot of people are certainly towing the line.

I am now going to comment on the fact that he went to Stanford. THANK GOD he went to Stanford, or any smart school, because hopefully (and it certainly seems so) he will have that strong educational background to rise above the backlash and to see it for what it is, small minded people taking shots at someone because he happens to look different from them. I hope that Stanford background contributed to his strength of character and intelligence to let him know, to avoid the easy bait that the race instigators want him to take.

Finally, I could not believe that some persons were claiming that he scared Erin Andrews in that interview? Wha-wha-WHAT? This is a woman who has worked for years in the sporting arena (and in video that was cut is seen hugging Sherman) she was certainly not afraid of the athlete yelling into the camera NOT at her. Nor was she afraid of the athlete who was amped up after his game and clearly acting wildly because of the game, not because of her. To suggest she was afraid again plays on the 'angry black man' stereotype or on the 'jungle savage' hysteria that is so often played on when a heavily muscled man with dreads happens to show up on a TV screen. J.J. Watts routinely does interviews with bloodstreaming down his face and a manic look but I never hear anyone claim his interviewers are scared. But if you doubt me, ask Erin Andrews she made it clear she was not scared.

Please can we stop immediately dissecting every black man's actions as a means of finding out how close he is to being a 'n-word' and just stop associating all black actions to that word. I would also just love if we would stop using that word entirely…but one cause at a time.

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Cali-J ueber alles in der Welt. Some think that I am mean; (I call them friends), in fact I am not that mean. What I am is sarcastic and dry to the sandpaper level. I have friends that I have never said a kind word to their face, but I praise to the ends of the earth to anyone I know and will defend them to the end. That’s just how I roll! My boys know that I am down for them, my girls know that no matter what I will keep them safe (and occasionally flirt with them [If you are a female friend of mine and think I haven’t flirted with you it just means you didn’t notice, it was extremely subtle or…not yet ]). No one is safe from my sarcasm even my own parents; hence of course as a kid I spent a significant amount of time in punishment. I treat people with respect if I think they deserve it – everyone starts off with the same amount of respect from me (a lot). You don’t need to earn my respect; you have to keep my respect.