If it’s stupid, Daily News columnist and Black Lives Matter guru Shaun King will either applaud or have said it. Among King’s past triumphs are his having declared in July of 2016 that abbreviating the middle name of Micah Xavier Johnson, a black man who ambushed and killed five Dallas police officers, was racist.
On Tuesday, King achieved a new low even for him with an article in the Daily News in which he announced his plan to boycott the NFL because of — wait for it — its blatant bigotry and anti-blackness. His specific grievance is rooted in fiction:
I can’t, in good conscience, support this league, with many of its pro-Trump owners, as it blacklists my friend and brother Colin Kaepernick for taking a silent, peaceful stance against injustice and police brutality in America. It’s disgusting and has absolutely nothing to do with football and everything to do with penalizing a brilliant young man for the principled stance he took last season.
It is a fact that no team will hire him, but that is only partly because he has made himself into something of a lightning rod. Put simply, Kaepernick isn’t as good a quarterback as he once was: Football Outsiders and ESPN both ranked him 30th among NFL passers last season. More to the point, calling the decision of team owners not to hire Kaepernick a “blacklist” is to take liberties with the term.
As for the charges of blatant bigotry and anti-blackness leveled at the league in King’s headline, is he for real? According to Quora, some 68% of the players in the National Football League are black. The only sport with a higher ratio of black to other ethnicities among the players is basketball, which is 74.4% black.