Mike Ditka waxing poetic the other day on the issue of football players kneeling during the National Anthem, had this to say:
All of a sudden, it’s become a big deal now, about oppression,” Ditka said. “There has been no oppression in the last 100 years that I know of. Now maybe I’m not watching it as carefully as other people. I think the opportunity is there for everybody. … If you want to work, if you want to try, if you want to put effort into yourself, I think you can accomplish anything.
Over here sparky.
I get that you might not see color when you are dealing with players or colleagues. I get that you might not be guilty of the profiling and bigotry that many folks are experiencing. But pssst ….. things have been bad, WAY bad, for black people well inside of 100 years.
Think not being able to vote.
Own a house.
Go to school.
Play in Major League Baseball.
Marrying people you love.
Walking without fear of being killed.
There has been significant oppression in the last 100 years. And a guy with your platform can’t afford to say otherwise.
As someone who has worked w minority businesses for years in the deep south, I have to agree w some of Ditka’s words although I likely disagree with the context he’s choosing to draw his opinions from.
As background/context for the words I’m about to say:
1) I’ve lived and worked in southern towns where white council members have literally never gone into the districts they represent, and in those districts there are homes w no power and the residents get their water from a pump. Two guesses as to the color of these residents.
2) At the local bank, certain seniors get their SS cheques from the post office and the bank staff cash them, without ID, because they’ve known these seniors and their families for decades. Two guesses as to the color of these people without ID.
3) Racism did not end when Obama got elected. Institutionally and individually it is alive and well. Watch Christine Pelosi’s documentary about the Obama election for proof.
1) During the same period I have worked with local pulbic service organizations and local colleges ans universities where degrees are offered for free and yet ppl don’t take them. The reason? Publicly – Too hard, no time, etc. Privately – A white man’s life isn’t that appealing. Not kidding.
1a). ID for voting? “Why should I?”
2) I have had full enrollment in some of my courses where the same courses taught by a black American are practically empty. Why? Cultural pecking order and the neighborhood or side of the street that teacher came from. Not kidding.
3) America, bar none, has the greatest amount of opportunity for everybody, regardless of ethnicity. However, for many people of color the EXCEPTIONAL are the only ones who get to experience the best or even part of this opportunity via the mainstream. Instead, they have to be exceptional to gain access to even basic things, and perhaps ad a football coach “exceptional people” is all of who Ditka has been exposed to in his lifetime.
Like Chris Rock said,all it takes is a white dentist in America to live in the same neigborhood as Oprah and Denzel Washington. If he were a black dentist, he would have had to have invented teeth.
Does a kid have to be exceptional and not deal drugs in his neighborhood (as the only real option for a job) AND avoid the gang beatings on the way to/from school AND do well in school on top of that just to get a college degree? Does a family have to figure out how to get power to their house first before the parents can look at taking some night classes?
I see oppression at an institutional and systemic level, but for a solution, can people start having dialogues on how to address self-oppression on an individual basis as well? Where disadvantaged people can stop listening to loser liberals who think solutions aren’t individual-based and are available only through some kind of bullying mob?
Because there are still a lot – A LOT – who have power in their homes and don’t have a bullet or gang gauntlet to get to school and have funding for a business and scholarships available left and right, but thanks to buying in to loser liberal thinking and generalizations they remain choosing to sit on their lazy “I’m a hustler, I need respect, I aint no Uncle Tom” ass instead of a) putting a condom on, b) working a “cracker” job as a grocery clerk, or c) getting the ID that they need to vote.
I have seen many black Americans struggle and succeed, and also struggle and fail. I have had conversations with dozens if not hundreds of visible minorities overall, and when I have asked all those who have risen above their disadvantages they all say the same thing: 1) raise your standards, realize that nobody is coming to save you, and 3) work your ass off.
Those who lose? White, black, short, tall, priveleged/unprivileged, always the same thing – someone didn’t give them what others had to work for but they felt was theirs to take.
In my opinion, racism needs help at the institutional level (and is not helped by racially-charged comments like Ditka’s), but it is not going to be solved there – not by politicians, not by (re)moving statues, and certainly not by the NFL. It’s solved on an individual and on a family level where ALL prejudices are done away with (especially intra-community) and both individual and community standards are raised. That’s where the track record of success is and where their role models should be coming from. Not from within the liberal dip-shittery that is the NFL protests right now and things like BLM.
Sorry for the rant.