Carnes: Shut up and run, boy!
It is difficult to choose which are more offensive words when such a statement is shouted at an athlete: the first four, demanding they self-muzzle opinions, or the last one, which pretty much cements one’s stance on racism.
This applies to football, but for basketball, it’s “Shut up and dribble, boy!” For baseball, “Shut up and swing, boy!” and, of course, those around Happy Valley who proudly shouted, “Shut up and ski, woman!” when Lindsey Vonn dared utter a word publicly about anything other than ski racing.
Oh, the audacity.
So this past weekend, during the NFL’s 101st season kickoff, I was not the least bit surprised, but just as disappointed, when some Kansas City fans booed during a moment of silence the players on the field had organized to show unity against racial injustice.
With their arms interlocked and stretching from one end zone to the other, the “classless trash” in the stands let their collective displeasure be known by clutching their pearls and stomping around indignantly with a case of the vapors over the intolerable assault on their self-righteous sensibilities.
All because professional athletes dared to publicly share an opinion.
My first thought was if you’re spending the money to go to the game, why in the world boo, especially both teams at the same time? At that point, I fully realized it had nothing to do with the symbolism of a flag or an anthem, and everything to do with racism.
It’s like all the booing simply meant “Take my money, but don’t you dare say or do anything I disagree with!”
Although I certainly support their right to do so, what a load of cow dung.
Most games had empty stadiums, so it was hard to tell other crowd responses, but every team showed some level of unity toward the issue of racial injustice.
And college football?
If your alma mater dares to lock arms in a show of unity, will you stop sending checks, or simply announce on social media your intent to never watch another game?
How about the Battle Mountain Huskies or the Eagle Valley Devils?
If these local school kids dare to do anything that might possibly be construed as a show of unity against racial injustice, will these same Klueless Keyboard Kaptains clutch their pearls?
Yes, there will be online commenters that just won’t be able to help themselves, letting us all know their personal refusals to watch or participate in any professional sport that dares to do anything but “Shut up and play!” These folks are desperately searching for reasons to be offended on a daily basis, so simply ignore them.
Personally, professional athletes standing, sitting, kneeling, jumping up and down or crocheting during the anthem is their right, so it’s all the same to me, and certain people will oppose whatever the athletes do no matter what it is, so don’t waste time attempting to understand them.
However, my suggestion is they simply change the channel.
Richard Carnes, of Avon, writes weekly. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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