With Deshaun Watson demanding a trade, voices have been heard around the NFL world on this issue. Including Dick Vermeil and Brett Favre.

“I think he (should) just shuts his mouth and become a better football player.”

I for one think Vermeil should shut his mouth and become more knowledgeable about the racial undertone of his perspective, but that’s beside the point.

Isn’t this statement a continuation of Laura Ingraham’s rhetoric of “Shut Up and Dribble"? Which undermines the sociopolitical platform of athletes that encourages civic engagement, diversity and inclusion, political awareness, and being the catalyst for positive change in their respective communities.

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But as history repeats itself so does the intentional ignorance of the powers that be. Hidden behind the pervasiveness of “shut up and play” that permeates from the owners to the mass media and general public, leaving any black athlete vilified for wanting a say in his or her career.

To be fair. The NFL has established their stance on the community that makes up 70% of the league and stayed consistent with it. Besides the theatrics, fake care, and pseudo activism promoted by having social statements shown on the end zone, warmups, and helmets.

The NFL doesn’t give a damn about fixing the actual problem.

They care about the money they can lose by not looking like they care about the problem. So, we can’t be surprised when that truth serum leaks out every once and a while.

If I’m lying, why are black coaches and management consistently being looked over for jobs they qualify for despite the demographics of the league. Collin Kaepernick still hasn’t got a job and the only reason the Washington Football Team was renamed was because of economic interest not to “end racism” as they say in the end zones.

Speaking of corporate interest Brett Favre had commented on the situation by saying

 “We make too much money to voice our opinion”.

So, the owners that signs the player’s check have the jurisdiction to comment on whatever they please? Did Jerry Jones have too much money to openly oppose the peaceful protest of kneeling during the anthem?

Did the former Texans owner make too much money to say, “We can’t have inmates run the prison”? (which is very much so a reference to mass incarceration in the country)

Deshaun’s contract extension is worth $156 million.

Jerry Jones is worth $8.5 billion.

Bob McNair was worth $3.5 billion.

In addition to this lapse of judgement are we not going to consider when Favre publicly refused to mentor Aaron Rodgers against the Packers’ wishes? When he played double-dutch with retirement and held the franchise in purgatory until they shipped him to Minnesota?

No, I’m not speaking as the moral authority. I’m far from perfect (if you don’t believe me ask my editors). I’ve made mistakes like committing rolling stops, missing assignments, and botched production on the radio.

But, one thing I’ve never done was speak down on anyone who sought control of their destiny and did what was best for them. Especially in a country that historically hasn't given its people the chance to.

These “old school” views at its core aren’t insensitive. They are microaggressions, coded talk and conversational paper cuts meant to undermine a black man taking charge of his career instead of leaving it to some white owner who could care less about his well-being.

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