There’s something especially disgusting about a Black person who eagerly jumps at any opportunity to publicly tell Black people they are expendable and that their value is determined by how much they can provide and perform for white people.
As The Root reported, 66 NFL players—many of them Black men and/or fathers—announced their decision to opt-out of this year’s season on Thursday, citing health concerns and a desire to protect themselves and their families during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
That act of agency by these players seems to have really pissed off former NFL player and current sports pundit Deion Sanders, who hopped on Twitter to make sure “all players” in “all sports” know how little they matter to the “game:”
“Please believe the game will go on without you,” Sanders wrote. “There’s no one that’s bigger than the game itself. Only the ref, umps, and officials are that important that you can’t play without them. NOT YOU!”
So, to recap: Sanders’ argument is that everyone matters in professional sports, except for the people who play the actual sports. The suggestion is that if players recognized how little they are valued by the “game,” their employers, and everyone else who makes money in relation to them (like Sanders himself) they would re-think their decision to opt-out of risking their and their families lives to COVID-19 to play that game.
It’s an idiotic argument that is not only condescending and offensive, it is unnecessary—unless you think these grown ass men who have been in negotiation with their employers and their loved ones before coming to a decision about their own lives and careers don’t know they are employed by a business.
Or you think it’s necessary to dress down successful Black men in public, just to remind them and everyone else that no matter how much money they’ve made they shouldn’t forget how little their lives matter.
Miami Dolphins Wide Receiver Allen Hurns, who has chosen to opt-out of playing this season, said it best in his response to Sanders’ tweet:
“You act like we said to cancel the season because we opted out,” responded Hurns. “I want the season to go on and for it to be safe for all my brothers. I did what’s best for me and my situation, this ain’t got anything to do with nobody else. I’m at peace knowing I did what’s best for my family.”
Continuing to provide bullshit arguments for the many white people in his Twitter responses celebrating his uncalled for denigration of players opting out of being their entertainment for a season, Sanders then pivoted to trying to claim the personal choices of some NFL players for the health of themselves and their families is a slap in the face of suffering essential workers across the country.
With ‘kin’ like Sanders, who needs enemies?
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