Last Sunday, the message du jour was “hands up, don’t shoot,” delivered in gesture form by five offensive (very offensive) team members of the St. Louis Rams, as they took the field at the Edward Jones Dome. The irony of black multi-millionaires donating a few seconds of their time to express solidarity with their inner-city confreres was only punctuated by the fact that one of them, wide receiver Kenny Britt, had himself been arrested and charged with a felony.
The stunt drew plenty of criticism, but that didn’t prevent another group of overpaid jocks from entering the field of play yesterday with a whole new message. This time it was “I can’t breathe,” which has become a rallying cry by protesters of a New York grand jury decision not to indict a police officer in the death of Eric Garner.
As the Wrap notes:
Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush and Cleveland Browns cornerback Johnson Bademosi had the message on their shirts as they warmed up before their games Sunday. St. Louis Rams offensive lineman Davin Joseph wore the message on his cleats.
Putting aside the inappropriateness of insinuating politics into sports, could there be anything more hypocritical than wearing the message “I can’t breathe” before entering a contest where the unstated goal is to knock the wind out of your opponent?
Anyway, I would argue that the players blew it yesterday by not using another sympathetic gesture. They could have achieved parallelism by making the universal choking sign:
- Police, Twitter, blast Rams for their ‘hands up, don’t shoot’ stunt at Sunday game *UPDATE*
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