RGIII…America’s Worst Nightmare…

Posted: April 23, 2012 in Sports, Vernon L. Johnson

Robert Griffin III. There are many roles that fit the mold of presumably, one of the best college quarterbacks to come out in years. He can be described as a Heisman trophy winner, soon to be husband (with a white woman, plays into public scrutiny), son of a two-parent household, exemplary teammate, and is of “bad character?” Does that even sound right? There were unanimous reports of some NFL scouts accusing RGIII of being selfish and not having the greatest character. When these reports were released, I instantly thought back to the first black heavyweight world-boxing champion, Jack Johnson. When you hear comments like that and see the confusion of most analysts from such comments, you cannot help but to see race as the central issue. Many analysts play around this, and will say absurd things like, “Race is definitely not the case.” This only ignores the elephant in the room and does a disservice to society at large. Jack Johnson was braggadocios, married white women, was rich, laughed and smiled in interviews, beat white men in the ring to claim the title, and was a black man born in the great state of Texas. White society at large hated Jack Johnson, and since Jack Johnson, has implemented policies and generalized mannerisms to combat this.  Even when you are sound in physical ability and character, it is not good enough. You will still be criticized and questioned in your demeanor and character. There is a fear of the potential of Robert Griffin III due to the fact he may do it all. He may become one of the greatest quarterbacks in the NFL, and afterwards, go on to have a career in politics by utilizing his degree in political science. When you are a black man in America who possesses human and social capital, you become unstoppable and feared incredibly at the same time. There’s a fear that daughters of white men will love RGIII as a man (not just as a physical sexual specimen or mandingo), that he could voice his opinions on social issues due to his high cognitive abilities, or that he needs to be compared to top quarterbacks or white quarterbacks I should say such as Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers instead of Michael Vick or Cam Newton (black quarterbacks). All this meanwhile,  former top pick quarterback Ryan Leaf is indicted on charges of breaking entry into homes in Montana and steals medications. Although, many sports news outlets make time to run segments on RGIII’s bad character…


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