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NFL Finally Does Something That Doesn’t Require an Apology; St. Louis POA Wants One Anyway

By Brian Byrd | Miscellaneous | December 1, 2014 | Comments ()

By Brian Byrd | Miscellaneous | December 1, 2014 |


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Barack Hussein Obama’s presidency is littered with failures. Taxes still exist. There is not a Taco Bell in every elementary school cafeteria. Poorz can freely wander the streets because the Emperor in Chief refused to authorize the construction of subterranean mole colonies.

Big letdowns, all. But Obama’s greatest missed opportunity is his inability to put black Americans in their place. He could have ended racism in America by asking his fellow blacks to ease off a little; to give a little bit of the country that they’ve taken over the decades back to hard-working model citizens. Six years into his dynasty, though, African-Americans still feel as though they can express their opinions publicly and without consequence.

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This march into absurdity continued Sunday when five St. Louis Rams players — Stedman Bailey, perennial fantasy draft bust Tavon Austin, Chris Givens, Kenny Britt and Jared Cook — displayed the now-iconic “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” pose during pregame introductions. It was a bold move that naturally captured the attention of many outside the sports world, including the St. Louis Police Officers Association.

The SLPOA, irritated that these athletes both formed an opinion and had the nerve to express it openly, responded with a different — and clearly superior — opinion of their own. The statement, which I assume was emailed to media outlets with a “FW: FW: FW: FW: FW: CAN YOU BELIEVE THE NERVE OF THESE BLACKS!?!” subject line, is the professional equivalent of your cousin’s drunken Facebook rants. Here’s STPOA spokesman/feces-thrower Jeff Roorda:

“All week long, the Rams and the NFL were on the phone with the St. Louis Police Department asking for assurances that the players and the fans would be kept safe from the violent protesters who had rioted, looted, and burned buildings in Ferguson. Our officers have been working 12 hour shifts for over a week, they had days off including Thanksgiving cancelled [ed: THANKS OBAMA!] so that they could defend this community from those on the streets that perpetuate this myth that Michael Brown was executed by a brother police officer and then, as the players and their fans sit safely in their dome under the watchful protection of hundreds of St. Louis’s finest, they take to the turf to call a now-exonerated officer a murderer, that is way out-of-bounds, to put it in football parlance.”

First off, Jeff, you’re a horrific writer with an inbred yak’s understanding of punctuation and run-on sentences (to put it in Pajiba parlance). Maybe sprinkle in a period here and there. Second, while the facts are in dispute, we can all agree that 12-hour shifts and cancelled holidays wouldn’t be an issue had an unarmed 18-year-old not been shot to death in the street. Sorry your officers have the opportunity to take advantage of taxpayer-funded overtime as a result. Third, I’d feel safer selling bacon-wrapped Bibles in Taliban-controlled Kabul than attending an NFL game. Drunk middle-aged barbarians whose sole purpose on Sundays is to sucker punch anyone wearing a rival jersey scare me far more than Ferguson protesters. Maybe I’d shell out for a ticket if police and stadium security did a better job stopping meatheads before they paralyze someone.

Roorda goes on to demand that the NFL discipline the Rams players involved. He also wants the league to issue a public apology. Through a league source I’ll identify only as Grainger Heavensbee, Pajiba has obtained an exclusive copy of Commissioner Roger Goodell’s response to Roorda’s requests:

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Demanding that NFL punish players for publicly expressing their beliefs is more than enough to warrant condemnation. But it’s this last part that elevates this entire situation from “tone-deaf mistake” to “Let’s stuff Jeff Roorda in barrel and roll him onto the highway.”

“I know that there are those that will say that these players are simply exercising their First Amendment rights. Well I’ve got news for people who think that way, cops have first amendment rights too, and we plan to exercise ours. I’d remind the NFL and their players that it is not the violent thugs burning down buildings that buy their advertiser’s products. It’s cops and the good people of St. Louis and other NFL towns that do. Somebody needs to throw a flag on this play. If it’s not the NFL and the Rams, then it’ll be cops and their supporters.”

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There’s so much dipshittery in this paragraph that it’s impossible to get through it all without pulling a Lester Nygaard. Yes, people will say that these players exercised their First Amendment rights because that’s exactly what they did, Jeff. The facts aren’t in dispute. “I know there are those who will say gravity exists. Well, I have news for people: it does.”

He follows the above gem with a let-me-hit-you-with-some-knowledge-style warning that St. Louis cops will, uh, also abide by the Constitution? What exactly are you threatening us with, Jeff? Shouting that the First Amendment allows your organization to propagate opinions without punishment while calling for a private league to punish its players for doing the exact same thing is hypocrisy not seen since Stalin declared war on Hitler.

We’ll set aside the ridiculous insinuation that the Rams players’ actions were done to support property destruction because this piece is already long and something that dumb doesn’t deserve a detailed response. Same goes for the idea that all protestors are looters. “Violent thugs” may or may not support the NFL. Hard to believe that’s true considering people from all races and socioeconomic statuses watch football, which contributes to ever-growing viewing numbers, which ensures larger television contracts, which in turn means more revenue for players, owners, and the league. But maybe it is.

You know what everyone in St. Louis does pay for though, Jeff? The St. Louis police department. Almost everyone in those municipalities fork over taxes, taxes that are used for things like police officer salaries. Citizen monies also provide equipment for police officers like the gun Darren Wilson used to kill Michael Brown, as well as the taser Wilson opted not to carry because it was “not the most comfortable thing.” The tanks, sniper rifles, tactical gear and tear gas used to intimidate and disperse those protesters? Also taxpayer funded (federally, anyway, and somewhat indirectly). A little less disdain for those who ensure your officers don’t work pro-bono would probably go a long way toward preventing the public demonstrations you seem to loathe, Jeff.

Most police are good people working in a rather thankless profession. Roorda certainly doesn’t speak for everyone in law enforcement, or even for every SLPOA member. Unfortunately, his words are now attributable to “The Police.” A spokesman for an organization of government employees pushing a sports league to punish athletes for peacefully expressing their views on a tragic situation only furthers the divide between law enforcement officers and the citizens they’re sworn to protect. And that’s the last thing anyone should want right now.


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