Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Racial Double Standard When Critiquing Tim Tebow


This is not a defense of Tim Tebow's skill set or lack there of. In fact, it appears that his abilities as a conventional NFL quarterback are limited. This is just an observation on the non-stop criticism he takes from the cynical main stream media.

When it comes to critiquing Tim Tebow, it appears that the flood gates are wide open on him. And although most won't admit it, there is no question in our mind, that his race, among other things, has allowed for this free for all. Its actually the pink elephant in the room, people. So why don't we have a big boy conversation, as Colin Cowherd might say.

Deion Sanders even asked Tebow about it on the NFL Network's post game show following the Broncos Thursday night win against the Jets. Sanders wanted to know "Why is there so much anger, hate, disdain- is it your faith?" Well, that certainly is part of it.

Many, I'm sure, are resentful of Tebow's abilities to lead his team to victory, running around like a helter skelter, completing very few passes along the way. Many are resentful of his squeaky clean image, his religious views, etc. He's an easy mark, we get that. We live in a cynical society, and none of this surprises me.

But what allows for people in the press, both white and black, to constantly rail on this guy without any regard for consequence, is the fact that he is white.

Let's face it, it allows for a more open conversation. We live in a society when at times its open season on everything white, and if you call out or question anything black, you're a racist. Its ok to use certain words or phrases when critiquing or railing on the white athlete.

Case in point, Bomani Jones. You can often see him on ESPN's Around The Horn. As a follower of his on twitter, we have seen the countless tweets and retweets on Tebow, and how much Tebow's unconventional success seems to irk Jones. And it borders on obsessive, check his timeline for yourself.

Just minutes after Thursday night's come from behind win against the Jets, Jones tweeted, "worst part is i have no problem with tebow at all. he's just not good. my problem, as always, is with stoooopid."

Just yesterday, some guy named Drew Sharp, who writes for the Detroit Free Press, was on Jim Rome's television show, also on ESPN. When talking about Tebow, Mr. Sharp said that the only way Tebow would work in Denver over the long run, was if Coach John Fox "dumb downed" the offense.

"Dumb downed" the offense, huh? Wow.

Now the before mentioned journalists ARE black, and Tebow's criticism does come from both sides when it comes to race, but can you imagine if Bob Ryan or Mike Lupica, two white journalists, while talking about a black quarterback, said that the only way that he would succeed was if his coach "dumb downed" the offense? Or after his 4th win in 5 tries, they took to twitter and talked about how much the player sucked, or referred to him as "stoopid"?

No need to imagine, because you'll never hear or see that.

As I said, the free flowing criticism of Tebow comes from both races, and in this case, Tebow's own(white) coach, John Fox. On Monday, Fox said of Tebow that Tebow "would be screwed" if he were forced to run a conventional offense. Hardly the comments you'd hear a coach say about a black quarterback in our society, and obviously the comments of a coach who is probably not thrilled with his starter's 4-1record, but that's an entirely different conversation.

But that's the difference between the MSM's critique of athletes as it pertains to race. Its exactly why last year, non-stop book promotional tour, patter of his own back author John Feinstein, weighed in on the Donovan McNabb situation in Washington.

Again, with what appears to be a lack of regard for consequence(because there is none), John Junior claimed that a career NFL coach, with 27 years as either an assistant or head coach, who works in a league that is about 70% black, used "racial coding" when explaining why he benched McNabb.

No word that we know of from Feinstein this year, regarding McNabb's benching from his new coach in Minnesota, Leslie Frazier, and whether or not there was any "racial coding" involved in that benching, but most likely not, since Frazier is black as well.

Its a double standard, period. And if its not, can I get Warren Moon to weigh in on this subject?

Earlier this year, prior to the NFL Draft, Moon expressed his displeasure with the media's scrutiny of soon to be Carolina Panther, Cam Newton. Here is Moon's quote from March, from a PFT post: “A lot of the criticism he’s receiving is unfortunate and racially based. I thought we were all past this. I don’t see other quarterbacks in the draft being criticized by the media or fans about their smile or called a phony. He’s being held to different standards from white quarterbacks.I thought we were past all this stuff about African-American quarterbacks, but I guess we’re not."

That quote is almost laughable, in light of the polarizing effect Tebow has on the media and fans.

I'd ask you to pay attention to the critiques of Tebow, and make judgement for yourself, both in the amount and types of criticism. You'll most likely see the lightning rod that is Tim Tebow, drawing certain types of criticism that if were uttered about his black counterpart, would get those critics crucified.


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