October 16, 2021 - 9:01 pm
I am an avid football fan. Not a Raider fan — although as a Las Vegas transplant I was happy to see the vaunted silver and black doing well. But, unfortunately, the team’s feats on the field have been overshadowed by their leader’s hate-tinged words a decade ago.
Jon Gruden apologized, but he also tried to provide context by claiming he often calls people who tell tall tales “rubber lips,” which sounds like a far-fetched way to make a racist trope more palatable. As a Black woman, I am not buying it. In fact, I am offended by this half-hearted attempt to shove something distasteful down our throats. With all due respect, unless you are Black or Brown, you should stay in your lane on this one.
Bravo to Raider owner Mark Davis for having zero tolerance for what turned out to be an ugly pattern of Gruden lobbing disparaging remarks against women, gay people and people of color. A league whose employees are 70 percent black and whose viewers reflect the changing demographics of America really didn’t have any other choice. Sure, people can change, sure the comments were made more than a decade ago, but the fact that they were made at all simply couldn’t be swept under the AstroTurf.
I applaud the Raiders for doing the right thing. Jon Gruden may be gone, but the fight against racism is far from over.