Mike Rowse A voice from New Mexico

3Aug/170

Every now and then a liberal gets it right

As many of you know from these columns or the radio show, I spend a lot of time listening to ESPN radio. I believe that a large portion of ESPN's money problems are due to the increasing inclusion of political talk into the sports shows. Don't get me wrong, there are times when sports have been catalysts for change in society and there are political and societal issues cross over into sports. But at its core, sports is entertainment for the vast majority of the fan base and they use it as an escape from the rest of the world. When their escape becomes too much like the rest of their world, they'll go find something else to watch.

Colin Kaepernick is one of those issues that, at first, may have been something that most people could have used to stimulate discussion about larger, societal issues regarding race relations and police brutality. But because of what I'll call his inability to articulate just what he was protesting, he did not become an icon of change for most Americans, including a large portion of the African American community.

Will Cain is a relatively new host on ESPN radio. I believe he's on a regular show weekend mornings or maybe just Sunday morning and is a frequent fill in host for weekday shows when the regular host is gone. I have listened to him enough to know that he's very into political issues and is a liberal. You can imagine that I don't see eye to eye with him very often but on this day I have to give him credit for understanding the anger most Americans have with Kaepernick's actions.

Cain said that while many Americans did not and would not like Kaepernick taking a knee during the National Anthem, they would have shown more tolerance towards him if he'd been able to articulate a valid reason for his protest. But Kaepernick, like many liberals, spoke in broad generalities saying things like America is a racist country; police are targeting and killing minorities, and blacks are treated as 2nd class citizens in America.

Cain opines that Kaepernick would have garnered more support both inside and outside of football and have suffered less vitriolic criticism if he'd been more specific in expressing his concerns. Pointing out statistics or specific areas where there are problems rather than painting us all as bigots for example. For once a liberal gets it; no one of significance denies that there is racism in America; no one denies that some cops are racist or overly violent; but America itself is not racist, our policies are not racist, cops don't deliberately, as a force, target anyone for arrests. Race is a sensitive issue even under the best of circumstances and when you try to paint an entire demographic as racist or bigoted or anti-anything, then you lose the support of the majority. And that solves nothing.

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