So I’ve mostly kept my mouth shut about the NFL protests of late. I’ve done that because I don’t feel like I’m really well enough informed about ALL sides of the issue to take a stand. I do believe that there is racial inequality in this country on some level. I also believe the media has a role in perpetuating things that may or may not be issues. I do support peaceful protest. I don’t know if the NFL was the right venue because I feel like it blurred the lines and made it unclear what was being protested. I do understand that some Americans feel like it is disrespectful not to stand for the anthem. At the same time, I also think it’s a touch creepy that we are so cult-y about symbolism and this intense nationalism versus viewing people as human beings instead of groups. In the cases of the injustices that have happened and been plastered all over the media, I was not there, so I can’t say who was right or wrong in those situations. I believe the issues are combinations of things that go on and spiral out of control. I like to believe the protests will do something, but my fear is that they will only divide us further. I would love to see more of these players put their money where their mouth is and actually do something in their communities and in their country. Fund programs to help this situation, don’t just kneel down. Kneeling is fine, but I feel like something needs to be done as well.
But the NFL protests aren’t the main reason I wrote this post. What Cam Newton said to reporter Jourdan Rodrigue was absolutely despicable. How can someone talk about equality and unity and protesting for these causes, then make sexist comments like he has? Then people had the nerve to say he “apologized” when he clearly never said anything of the sort. First he said women don’t know what they are talking about, then just switched it to say reporters in general don’t know what they are talking about. He obviously said that as a cover-up, for one, because why at first did you say “females”? Not even “female reporters,” just “females”. It is absolute garbage for him to even say that. If a male reporter asked him about a player’s routes, how would he answer then? There’s nothing “funny” or “cute” about demeaning women, just like there isn’t anything funny about making fun of other races, religions, or anything else. I’m the type of person who can appreciate a joke, even a dark one, but you can’t just say something mean and degrading and think it’s ok because you say you’re joking. How is saying something like this against women any different than saying derogatory things against a black man? Human beings are human beings, regardless of their gender, sex, race, religion, etc. I’m sad that in 2017 we even have to have this conversation. Ms. Rodrigue clearly loves her job, and it appears that she’s pretty good at it. Even if by some off chance she didn’t understand “routes” herself (which I feel is very far from the truth), it’s impressive that she even thought to ask that. That in itself is deep meaningful reporting about the game. She didn’t just ask Cam how he felt about the game or what was going through his head, she asked him about the fundamentals of the game. Maybe Cam doesn’t know enough about his own job to answer. Pretty sad if you ask me.
Let’s be better than this, people. If your friend makes a negative comment based on someone’s gender, race, religion, etc. let’s make an effort to correct them and show that we aren’t accepting of that kind of degrading behavior. The only way things are going to change is if we change them ourselves. If a person can do the job, they can do the job, no matter what they look like. It’s about time people got over themselves.