Earl Ofari Hutchinson's take on the politics of the day
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“Colin Kaepernick’s stance against racial injustice has sparked a much-needed national dialogue over the role of sports and racial relations in America as well as within the NFL and professional sports. It has also stirred mass calls for protests, demonstrations and petitions that has further energized tens of thousands nationally, “says author and political analyst Earl Ofari Hutchinson.
In his riveting new eBook, Kaepernick, Hutchinson opens with the brief drama in Baltimore where for one week in late July 2017, the buzz was that former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick might, just might, soon become a Baltimore Ravens. It didn’t happen Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti was very pointed. Kaepernick he said, “would upset some people.” He went further and noted that he wasn’t thrilled at the now well-hashed knee he took during the playing of the national anthem in protest over police violence against blacks.
Bisciotti’s revealing remarks about Kaepernick was more than just the airing of the feeling of one of the NFL’s 32 owners about his protest and possible signing. It provided a huge, open air window into the wealth, power, and near autocratic dominance of NFL owners, the conservative views of those owners, and how they make, shape, and tightly control the sport world’s wealthiest, most influential and powerful sports organization.
Hutchinson observes that Kaepernick is unemployed not simply because the NFL is inherently racist. Or, it’s simply so apoplectic at the thought of one guy taking a knee and somehow desecrating American patriotic values. Or, that Kaepernick’s action was so threatening that it and he had to be banned in Boston in perpetuity. Or, even that the NFL just had to send a message to the other black players. The answer why he remained NFL unemployed lay deep in the structure, organization, and mindset of NFL owners. It required an understanding of their obsessive pursuit of cash at all costs and their absolute determination to maintain total, iron-clad owner control over their league.
Hutchinson maintains that Kaepernick is just a victim, a pawn, then in the highest of high stakes of sports control games. In Kaepernick, Hutchinson examines the NFL’s ownership, structure, and quest for wealth and power and what that means for sport, the fight against racial abuse and injustice both on and off the playing field in America.
Kaerpenick presents a revealing look at the profound impact the NFL’s insatiable hunt for wealth, power and dominance has had on sports and society. In the process, that hunt, says Hutchinson, has made victims of Kaepernick and countless others.