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Sep
19
2007

Society Report Card - McNabb Comments

By Jack Cobra  |  Comments (11) | Hype It Up!  |   Filed Under: Jack Cobra Archive | Misc.
donovanandbrady.jpgIt must be the 'Recurring Theme of the Day' day around these parts, or maybe I'm just trying to slide that pic of the Cowboys cheerleaders down the page a bit.....For those of you who missed my first 'Society Report Card'....I was able to earn a Sociology minor in college and probably should have gone through Grad School because of it. So, from time to time I like to brush up on my skills and make my own little report card on Society. I usually just keep it to myself because it involves politics, race issues, socio-economics issues, how people drive, people who have too many items in the express checkout of the grocery store, helping old ladies across the street, etc. You get the point. This time I'll bring it to you in full effect. You should now feel impressed.

Race in the NFL is a subject that I covered extensively while in college. I wrote up a nice little paper about it that became a forum speech that became some newspaper interviews that became a nice sit down with the Chancellor of our college that became a plea by my Sociology professors to go onto Grad School......that was turned into a lawsuit by Johnny Cochran. I'm kidding, kind of. Now, there probably wasn't a direct correlation between my study and Cochrane's lawsuit, since I went to a small school, but I did my work first....and he reaped all the rewards. Again, kidding, kind of. Anyways, whether you want to acknowledge it or not there are race issues when you deal with the National Football League.

If you think that people see white/black players as the same in the NFL you are just fooling yourself. If you think white/black quarterbacks are treated the same....you are fooling yourself. If you think white/black cornerbacks are treated the same....you are fooling yourself. They are treated differently, just like when a white/black person goes for a job interview at McDonalds. Sure, it would be nice if everyone was looked at the same and treated the same, and maybe there are laws in place to try to make that happen....but it still doesn't happen. Sadly, it never will. That's just the way things are in this nation.

So, you'd like your football to be played without a race issue involved? It's not going to happen. Here is what I'd like to happen.

I'd like for players to speak out against this every single time they think it happens. I'd like for them to overreact a bit. You know what will happen then? The norm will become what McNabb did this week and the 'outlier' will become those people who try to shade the truth. Let's have so many people talk about this issue that it can't be ignored anymore or brushed under the rug. The only reason why people are trying to push away this subject or say that McNabb should just shut up is because he doesn't have anyone behind him at this point (besides Shaun King?). Why aren't they speaking out....because of fear. Strength in numbers fellas, strength in numbers.

McNabb is right. Black quarterbacks are looked at and treated differently in the NFL than white quarterbacks. They aren't the norm. People (franchises/media/fans) expect a white dude under center, taking the snap and handing the ball off to the black running back. Deny it all you want....it's true. Even if half of the quarterbacks in the NFL were black....the issue would still be the same because the people who are making the decisions are the one's who have put the stigma out there in the first place. Until McNabb and all the other players in the NFL stand up and talk about this treatment, nothing will change. Note that I didn't say all the African-American players were the one's that needed to stand up, all the players do. This is an issue for their 'society' and if you want to make your society better, you need to do something about it as a whole. It's the same reason why we haven't had a woman president before. There are enough women to change the vote, but until they get out there and actually vote her in....nothing will happen.

Look, everyone thinks this world is PC and all of that, but it's not. While you may not use certain terms and make certain judgments at times, the baseline remains. For a lot of people, how they act in public is a lot different than they act in the privacy of their home. It goes the same way for how they think.

So, who's at fault for this mess? Well, everyone is. The league was built by white guys and now it's played by black guys (for the most part)....who should hold more power? Should anyone hold the power at all? Should McNabb have said anything? Yes sir, he should have and he should continue to.

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11 Comments
Extra P. said

Good point about PC - just because people try to fit into the language of the day doesn't mean they've changed their underlying habits or thoughts one bit. It's a completely artificial barometer.

The GM said

I still don't see it. Just because McNabb says it, doesn't make it true. I personally, have not ever heard someone say or said myself, "He's good for a black quarterback, but he isn't anything compared to a white quarterback unless he throws for 400 yards a game."

I wish he would have maybe brought up some factual instances when this has happened, them maybe it would be more believable for me.

Also, if people are really watching a game and analyzing the color of the players skin at each position, then they need to get their eyes and their heads checked.

PC is just a charade.

Jack Cobra said

It's true whether you want to believe it or not.

It's to the point now where we think that way without even thinking about it. If that makes sense. People do need to get their heads checked but don't....because it's been ingrained in them for so long.

The facts are out there, I didn't want to bore everyone with them.

Brian said

The "black QB" stigma is still there. Everyone has heard some form of "He's pretty good for a black QB." It's laughable at this point, but there are still people out there who believe it, or think it.

The GM said

I guess I am just used to the way that I think and I know my set of beliefs.

It is a shame that things like this have to be brought up or even thought.

I am probably the least PC person I know, which some people don't like, but I know that I hold the same standards for EVERYONE across the board.

Jack Cobra said

Things like this have to be brought up because people keep saying they aren't an issue...when they are.

It's easy to ignore an issue, it's difficult to do something about it. Most people take the easy way out.

Before Johnny Cochran's report came out there wasn't any public evidence showing the statistics of how african-american coaches were getting the shaft by the NFL. I know, because I had to run all the numbers myself....Now, after he put in all of that hard work, the NFL has a couple of minority coaching programs in place.

People will just things go as they are until someone says something about it and states a case showing something needs to be changed.

It's easier to just go with what has been going on.

JJ said

I'll agree that there is a black QB bias, but McNabb is paid as high as any white franchise player, maybe even higher. (I believe his salary puts him in the League's Top Ten highest paid players).

McNabb's statements would have more merit and credibility if they were made when the Eagles were 2 - 0 instead of 0 - 2. Said after a loss to a team they should have beaten, it sounds like an excuse. If you don't want the heat, don't collect a franchise player's salary.

McNabb isn't getting booed in Philly because he's black... he's getting booed because the Eagles are LOSING. Charles Barkley pointed this about playing in Philadelphia when he was in the booth on MNF and was right. Whether it's right or wrong, if you aren't winning in Philadelphia, you are going to get booed, no matter what color you are. You must perform at the level you are paid. Franchise player salaries = big expectations. Just ask Pat Burrell of the Phillies....The fans mercilessly boo Pat with the same anger and vehemence as McNabb every time he goes into a slump.

Jack Cobra said

I think Brian, from Depressed Fan, pointed out that the interview took place before the loss and before the booing.

The point of the post is that whether you want to believe it or not, whether you want to see it or not...there is a bias there.

Great post. I particularly second your desire for more players to talk about inequality so that it becomes a common part of our discourse. Regardless of whether people wish to disagree with McNabb here (though I don't), it's worthwhile for McNabb to discuss the issue. Honest discourse on the subject is necessary, particularly with such an ugly history of racism in society and in sports (and particularly related to the quarterback position). These issues shouldn't be ignored, and honest feelings about the issues shouldn't be dismissed as "playing the race card": we should frequently examine and discuss them.

Boney said

honestly... and I know I'm a white guy and whatever is said will be written off to the "it's engrained in you" crap that a sociology minor claims to know about me...

I couldn't care less the color of the skin of any professional athlete. I'm not impressed by throwing the ball 75 yards on the fly or scrambling for first downs. I don't care about highlight reel dunks over layups, and I certainly don't care about black running backs over a white running back.

I don't expect a white "dude" under center over a black "dude". I understand the "all american boy" outlook that southerners and people from the midwest may have with regards to who they think should be quarterback. It doesn't mean it's right...

When I look at my favorite football team, I expect to see the best player lined up under center. Whether he can run a 4.4 40, or whether he can make smart decisions with the ball, it doesn't matter. They help, my team, win the game. So, I'm a "fan", and I don't care about the skin color of the quarterback or the running back, defensive backs or linebackers. Whoever can win the game, is who I want on the field.

I'm not blind to the notion that blacks may get treated differently in the NFL, but I personally don't care. They play a sport where every Sunday, every game is on TV. They make, millions of dollars to play a game. They risk their lives to play a game, but they play by choice. I don't work by choice, I'd prefer NOT to work. Obviously, because I need to make money I have to work. These guys don't HAVE to play a game. Many of them didn't use the chance at college education to further themselves IF football doesn't work out.

Therefore, I don't feel bad for any of them. They get paid more in 1 season than I've made in my entire working life so far. They should be able to receive criticism from me, because my money goes to pay their salaries if I go to a game.

Jack Cobra said

It's nice to know that none of the Cobra Brigade readers go along with what seems to be the 'social norm', or maybe you are by going with the PC answer. Tough call....


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