Why does the Sports Writing industry care about Kaepernick?
If you’re a regular reader of R/D, you probably are getting tired of Colin Kaepernick hitting our radar. He’s big for a few reasons:
- There really isn’t much interesting news in sports, so when something does happen, every hack two-bit writer descends on it
- Kaepernick sets off both our drama/bias indicators and our topic heuristics, due to the racial, social justice and economic aspects
- Sports writers are far to the left even of the mainstream media, and tend to use hyperbole constantly.
Just how liberal the sports media is can easily be discerned by their stance on Kaepernick. First, let’s review some facts:
- Kaepernick wasn’t actually very good for his last few years.
- His job is to play football and be a team lead. He was, statistically, a lousy team lead, and his team lost more games with him than without him in his last two years.
- He hijacked the workplace – the playing field – for a political statement. You do not have the right, ever, to hijack your place-of-employment for any kind of statement; as we’ve covered extensively, Freedom of Speech only means the government cannot restrict you. Your employer can.
Some (very few) sports writers are even suggesting that pushing politics onto the field has backfired, pointing out that the NBA requires players to stand for the anthem.
- As James Damore can vouch, speaking even in-turn but on sensitive topics can get you fired from the workplace.
- And Kaepernick didn’t get fired; he broke his contract and quit.
These really aren’t subject to debate. These are all statistically-backed facts; check the links. Facts that the sports writers try to obscure, by using Kaepernick’s entire career numbers rather than his last two years, for example.
Even while under contract, Kaepernick was embarrassing, with those police-pig socks, the shirt glorifying Fidel Castro (a terrible human-rights violator) while Kaepernick vilified the police.
Since Kaepernick opted-out of his contract, he doubled-down on his anti-America profile by attending the un-Thanksgiving celebration at Alcatraz. Which, for most NFL viewers, is anti-American. For journalists, it isn’t – mostly because they don’t understand the whole “America” thing. They know there is one, but not the values and loyalty the fans have for “America.”
So what about those sports writers?
As we covered previously, the Seahawks had invited Kaepernick to a workout session, but the offer was withdrawn when Kaepernick wouldn’t commit to not kneeling during the American anthem. But even with that blatant statement from Kaepernick, sports writers still continue to question whether it is the right thing to do.
Similarly, Eric Reid is still an unsigned free agent, and some sports writers are calling this owner backlash about his taking a knee (also with SF 49ers) all last season. Reid met with the Bengals recently, but when asked if he would continue to take a knee he was unwilling to commit. He walked away without an offer.
Ask your self this: Which side of the Google / James Damore issue were they on? Or the Brendan Eich persecution? (He was the CEO of Firefox who made a legal, small donation to an initiative campaign in California defining marriage traditionally… that won… i.e. more than half of the California voters on the issue agreed… and was forced out for it by the intolerant left).
Sports writers have a bit of hypocrisy on these issues. And it’s hurting the ratings, especially at ESPN. It was ESPN star and SportsCenter anchor Jemele Hill who tweeted this gem:
Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists.
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) September 11, 2017
Of course leading to a flame-war with the Godzilla of Tweets…
ESPN is paying a really big price for its politics (and bad programming). People are dumping it in RECORD numbers. Apologize for untruth!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 15, 2017
Just in case you missed this, ESPN penalized Jemele and returned from politics back to their sports roots by… opening up “The Undefeated” featuring Jemele Hill, defined as “online vertical focused on race, sports, and culture.”
And then she doubled-down, with this quote:
It’s that whenever black athletes [move] outside the box of going beyond just being the entertainment of society, it is met with tremendous blowback. Tremendous. It’s all good when you’re catching touchdown passes or when you score 30 points a game. But the moment you start talking about some issues of substance or start demanding that your audience do something, then it becomes a different situation.
By now, you know the drill… think about her assumption. Black players are not suffering blowback “whenever” they move out of the entertainment box. “When” is a big word. We are only talking about during paid time, during the National Anthem, during a game. How is that “whenever”?!
That is the sign of a hard-core partisan (of either stripe.) Take a small example, exaggerate it to an extreme, and then attack the exaggeration. Journalists shouldn’t do it. Ever.
Sports writers once tended to stick to sports. It wasn’t that they were conservative or liberal, but just that it wasn’t relevant or talked about. Because it’s meant to be entertainment; leave the politics out.
On the bright side, even if the sports writers can’t play nice,the NFL teams seem to be moving to sign solid players without baggage.