Let me start with saying that I have NEVER been a fan of Rob Parker(an analyst on ESPN). Not necessarily because of anything he has said or done but quite simply because of the way he talks. He whines when he talks. I do not mean that he is whining every time he says something. He literally draws out the last word of each sentence and sometimes he does that to other words in the sentence and it is just downright A.NNOY.ING. The other morning I turned on my tv to watch First Take, saw he was sitting at the debate desk and I promptly turned the channel. Well, after yesterday’s debacle I am sure there were a lot of people turning their tv.
One of the topics of yesterday’s episode was Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III. I do not know what prompted the discussion but I know it quickly went wide left when Parker used the discussion as an opportunity to question RG3’s “blackness.” Yes, I said his blackness. What does that mean you ask? I DO NOT KNOW!!! After reading the transcript of the discussion, I am going to assume it means that if you are black there are certain people in this world who expect you to think, act and behave a certain way because you are black. I guess that is what “blackness” is. The term is stupid and I have a better word for classifying what “blackness” is: A STEREOTYPE.
Parker had the nerve to ask on tv, “if he(RG3) is a brother or a cornball brother?” I find that question to be ironic coming from a man who always looks like he got dressed in the dark. Parker then went on to say, “He’s not real. Ok, He’s black, he kind of does the thing but he’s not really down with the cause…..We all know he has a white fiancee. There was all this talk about how he’s a Republican, which, I really don’t care, there’s no information at all. I’m just trying to dig deeper into why he has an issue. Because we did find out with Tiger Woods. Tiger Woods was like, I’ve got black skin but don’t call me black.” Lawd hammercy. This guy. Just spewing foolishness all over the place. Hidden amongst the broken sentences and incomplete thoughts is pure ignorance.
Let me break these statements down. First, what makes a black man a “cornball brother?” RG3 is educated, articulate, full of integrity and has never been in trouble. If that is what makes you a “cornball brother” then I wish there were more of those around. Second, what is this cause he speaks of? I DO NOT KNOW!! I am black and I was not informed that there was a certain cause I had to be down with. Third, what does him having a white fiancee and possibly being a Republican have to do with his “blackness?” I DO NOT KNOW!!! I know that there are folks in this world who believe people who marry outside of their race are “sellouts.” That is ignorance at its best. Who cares who other folks marry? Is it causing you to lose money on your job? Fourth, what does Tiger Woods have to do with any of this? Tiger Woods is NOT just a black man. Any logical thinking person would have no problem with him not calling himself a black man because HE IS NOT. He is multiracial, in case you missed the memo.
This may come as a shock to some but what Parker did is, sadly, not uncommon in the black community. Some of us live to tear each other down instead of lifting each other up. Some of us do not want to see others succeed, not realizing that when one is successful, that is a victory for all of us. It has taken us a long time to get to the point where we are respected for our works, endeavors, knowledge and service. We threaten the very foundation of what our ancestors went through when we questions people’s “blackness” simply because that person does not live their life the way we think they ought to. I know I may be upsetting some of my readers right now but there is no sugar coating in the world of journalism. Plus, if you know me, then you know I am not about “sugaring” anything. Instead of focusing on those things in RG3’s life that he does not understand, Parker should be focused on how this young black man has revitalized a team, fanbase and even a city. He has restored some pride that has been lost for at least a decade. His success is pumping money into the economy. He is a great role model for not just young boys who look like him but for all young boys across the world.
So after saying all that, I have concluded that I still do not know what “blackness” is. I love to read but I have not read the book that tells me what I need to be doing to prove how black I am. If being black comes with certain criteria then I am going to go out on a limb and say I may not qualify. I love to run. I am attending my first NASCAR race next year and I have Bon Jovi concert dates circled on my calendar. Does that mean I am not black? Ummmm, no. Those things are part of who I am. Despite how I see myself, I know that I am held to a different standard simply because of the color of my skin. I know there are people who expect more out of me because of my skin color and I know there are people who expect less out of me simply because of my skin color. I am kind, passionate, loving and I communicate well. I do not do drugs. I have not been to jail and I have graduated from college, twice. If that makes me a “cornball”, then so be it. I am going to take my two degree having, marathon running, non-profit starting “cornball” self to this Bon Jovi concert next year and sing all the songs as loud as I can. Keep fighting for DC, RG3!! Us “cornballs” are rooting for you!
Until Next time….TOODELLS.