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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

On becoming a racial slur, leading grown men to greatness and the shame of a nation

By Sean Aaron Cruz
July 24, 2012

Portland, Oregon—

A story about a young man’s aspirations to become a racial slur appeared in the Washington Post recently.

It is difficult to understand how a talented, intelligent young person with such strong family, church and community supports could go so far wrong, and without resorting to crime, substance abuse or gang activity.

But what is so shocking about the story is that those very supports were what set him on his course in the first place, what guided him to aspire to wear such a shameful label, and despite the fact that they were all strongly committed to notions of civil rights and the dignity of all people.

His church, family, school and community together shaped his attitudes and understanding of racism, just as they are shaping the next generation of children to also shamelessly aspire to be a racial slur when they grow up, to be a professional racial slur.

Being employed as a racial slur in the United States can pay really, really well and bring great status far and wide, particularly since the company is located in the nation’s Capitol.

The Post described the young man’s journey to greatness as a racial slur: “But through it all, the son of two retired Army sergeants has pursued one mission above all others: Becoming a Redskin. And not just a Redskin, but someone who can lead grown men to greatness, reward the faith the organization has shown in him and live up to the expectations of a fan base that has come to see him as nothing less than the franchise’s savior."

The Post quoted the young man: "...Griffin laughed, he later recalled, but he was dead serious about his message: I want to be a Redskin."

The American continent's original racial slur is enshrined in the nation's capitol as "one of the most valuable franchises in US pro sports."

And it is to the shame of us all."

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