Re: Dolphins Teamate Says Martins Claims Overstated
posted at 11/7/2013 6:22 PM EST
In response to TripleOG's comment:
In response to CablesWyndBairn's comment:
At the risk of sounding insensitive or that I would ever tolerate racism...
I've seen lots of things said in a locker room that would in no way be tolerated in the real world. Everyone knows it's banter. You are around a bunch of grown men and they say many things - racial or ethnic epithets, question your sexuality, the size of your knob, you name it. You either give it right back or you're perceived as fresh fish. It's part of being a man, it's part of a ritual of acceptance amongst your peers, fair or not. I've come to realise as I grow a bit past my prime atlhletic years that I've dished it out as much as I've had to take it. I've been the only caucasian in a locker room, the only Scottish-born guy in a room of Englishmen or Americans and I've been given a lot of lip for those reasons. I'm positive I've said things in my life to others unlike me that, outside of a locker room, would have resulted in a fight.
I can't say that I can totally relate to this Martin fellow in that I wasn't asked to dish out $15k for Vegas trips or the like. But to me, if you're a man, stick up for yourself or be seen as a soft touch and suffer the consequences.
I think he made it clear how he felt when he left the team. No one is gonna say the NFL is not a grown mans league and that the culture may be normal but in the context of it STILL being a proffesional job it may have gotten out of hand due to lack of leadership. We know BB. He has been here over 10 years. He nipped it in the bud early. How can a team show that leadership with new coaches every other year?
I dont know if you read my post on this about my friends text JUST this morning but he sent a few more. HE just started working , with his brother with a bunch of guys in landscaping who know each and have worked their years. Same thing to me. First day, they get introduced and one guy sais "hey this another co worker Jonny, He s*cks a mean C*ck, if you ever want your c*ck s*cked just ask him. Now this is how THEY joke but my friend felt akward. I recall playing football in H.S. and the white kids were the same way. I MADE the decision to quit football after my freshman year a.) due to 2 a days in august b.) do to the h0mo behaviour that was supposed to be a joke like guys walking up and grabbing your N*ts in the locker room. Sorry, I wasnt having that. Some comformed and some left. You make a choice but it doesnt excuse it.
After the h0 mo jokes, the next day it was on to N*99er Jokes and talking about nooses and one guy saying his grandfather joined the military before they allowed women and N*99ers. He sais its what they DO ALL DAY! The ONLY reason he is privey is because they assume he is also white because he doesnt have melanin but his half african. Its funny how this just happened at the same time. He is really bothered and asked my advice. I told him get your paper if it becomes too much, just leave dont make a stink because he has no position. he is new and outnumbered same as martin was.
Triple, I read that earlier post and I think it's one more should pay attention to. We get a lot of denials that racism really exists anymore or that it's significant enough to be a concern, but anyone who's been out in the world and has overheard conversations like those you report know it's still quite common.
There are reports now that Incognito viewed himself (and maybe was viewed by teammates) as an "honorary" black man, and people have been using that to justify his use of the N word. I've known other white guys who liked to think they were black and dressed in black-style fashions and used black sounding language. I guess it helped them feel cool. Honestly, though, that always struck me as kind of pathetic and also disrespectful both to themselves and to the black people they were imitating. I mean really, why does it make a difference if you're black or white? And why would it be so important to pretend you're something you're not? Respect those who are different and respect yourself--but trying to pretend you're different than who you really are shows little respect for yourself and puts the people you are imitating on some sort of unrealistic pedestal that also, in a way, dehumanizes them by exaggerating turning them into something they are probably not--i.e., something very different from who you are.
Anyway, I agree that no white person can use the n-word in a totally benign way. The history and context behind the word are (at least right now) just too loaded, and I've never heard a white person use it except either disrespectfully or in a distorted attempt to be "like" black people which only emphasizes how much they feel unlike black people.
I played basketball as a young man a lot on public outdoor courts in Chicago--on the southside, where I was often the only white guy. I heard blacks call each other n's all the time. At first, it kind of shocked me, but then I understood it was a way of co-opting a term that had been used against you (or your race) and destroying its potency by making it something affectionate that you shared among friends with similar experience. My Italian mom did the same thing when she called us W O Ps. But you can only play that game if you are of the race that the word was used against. White people can't use the n-word in the same way because the n-word never threatened them. It's just impossible to co-opt a term that never was used against you. Whites who think they can use the n-word because blacks use it (or condemn the "double standard" of blacks being able to use the n-word when whites can't) really don't get it at all. It's not the word itself, but the way the word is used, that makes the difference. And because situations are different, whites can never use the word the same way blacks can.