NFL anti-police violence protest: Does Bob Costas know better than Black people?

bob costas

Since when did Bob Costas become the voice of Black athletes or the Black community? It is maddeningly patronizing that the Big Business media continue to ask sportscaster Bob Costas to be the interpreter for Black professional athletes and the Black community. What qualifies him to be an authority on the  NFL anthem protest, Colin Kaepernick and police violence?

But they continue to choose Costas because he is a classic liberal, he supports the cause but not the methods, meaning in essence that he doesn’t support the cause and like conservatives he wants the protest to end as well he and his moderate friends are just less honest about it.

If CNN really wanted an opinion on the anthem protest why didn’t they interview William Rhoden or Shannon Sharpe, or Jemele Hill?

[See Costas interview with  Michael Smercornish of CNN below his opinion on taking a knee starts at the 9:00 minute mark]

It’s because they don’t want Black folks opinion,( Uncle Toms are the exception) they solicited Costas because they want to use him as a supposed “ally” to interpret the protest “whitesplain” it and deliver a message that they think the Black athletes and others will listen to and take seriously.

In his interviews Costas never acknowledges police violence as a real problem in this country, instead he spends most of his time trying to figure out ways to tell the athletes, that whatever they do, try not to violate the sensibilities of White people. Go to church, take a knee after the game, talk about it, hold Town Forums, but don’t do anything that will disturb business as usual.

Costas postulates that the anthem is a bad target because it is held in such esteem by fellow Americans. But of course that’s why it is such a good target, it gets folks attention.

In that vein Costas took presumptuousness, privilege and entitlement to new heights when he thought it proper for him (though he has done nothing to support the protest) to proffer advice to athletes who are putting themselves and possibly their careers on the line. He not so humbly suggests that the athletes should take a knee “at the end of the anthem.”  But the Dallas Cowboys took a knee before the anthem a few weeks ago and were roundly booed.

Costas misses the mark, folks aren’t so much offended by what is being protested (police violence and racism) as they are by who (Black people) is doing the protesting. It doesn’t matter what form of protest is used those who want an end to injustice will understand it and join the cause, those who don’t will continue to talk about disrespecting the flag and the military.

Apparently Costas naively believes it his job (as does some liberal media) to interpret to White people what the natives are saying as if the demands aren’t clear as day. We want the police to stop killing us.

Costas and his kind wants to make sure the White folks know that Black folks, “don’t mean no harm.” ‘They loves the plantation, they loves Massa they jes want Massa to please sir ask the overseers to kindly stop killing us, so much.’

That’s what Costas is saying when he reminds the audiences that the protesting athletes love the military and their country.. But what if folks didn’t love their country or their military, would their protest be any less valid?

The arrogant White sportscaster even suggested (without being prompted by his interviewer) that Black folks, Black athletes and those opposed to police violence should get another messenger, because in his opinion Colin Kaepernick is not a good representative.The sportswriter further revealed his hand, when he criticized Marshawn Lynch for sitting during the anthem, saying it was “contemptuous” and had “no redeeming aspect to it.”

On the other hand, he said he liked the taking a knee because it “is an act of grace” being interpreted, he can appreciate Negroes on their knees a little better than strident Black folks on their feet.

This strikes a familiar cord.  In fact Kap’s rejection by Costas (White liberalism) is indication that he is indeed qualified. In the old days when Black folks rose to prominence who had a revolutionary perspective the good liberals (White and Black) would say, ‘we support your cause but your representative is hurting your cause.’

According to Costas, Kaepernick is “naïve” and akin to someone who took a course on political science from a radical professor. Clearly the quarterback learned well. But this makes Kaepernick naïve, as if Black people aren’t oppressed in this country and police violence isn’t real.

Supposedly, according to Costas the black- balled (white-balled) quarterback is not qualified to be the representative and an icon of this movement, because he has spoken the truth about injustice and racial oppression in the US and because he has made statements about the futility of voting and has disparaged the police.

Incredibly, the arrogant and condescending Costas, “white splained” that people, Black people sacrificed and died for Kaepernick’s right to vote.

And while Costas may have a point, calling the cops pigs, probably isn’t the best way to win folks over who are inclined to believe that the police have the community’s best interest at heart, but it’s as good of description of an institution that has historically mistreated, abused and brutalized the Black community and been responsible for the deaths of thousands.

Costas may empathize with the effort to end police violence but his presumption of entitled right to offer his “two cents” and advise folks, exposes to borrow a quote, “the unwitting mentality of a fox applying to guard the henhouse.”

From Costas perspective protest is not legitimate unless it is done the acceptable way, in the acceptable arena, with acceptable spokespeople and at the acceptable time. With friends like Costas and his ilk who needs enemies?

justice then peace



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