Videos by OutKick
Celebrity status is reserved for opportunists. They grave-dance, take advantage of the moment, and wait like vultures to pick at the rotting carcasses left in the wake of a social justice mob stomping. It is all to build their brands, as well as their bank accounts. That is who our athletes and media members have become. They, too, are frauds betting on a losing strategy.
In the aftermath of the heinous murder of George Floyd, an opportunity emerged. Athletes and media talents saw an opening. An opportunity to brand-build by labeling opponents racist and attacking everyone vulnerable to the times. None of this had anything to do with Floyd, sadly.
“The mob,” as many call it, graduated to greater targets. Our loud, influential voices in sports were now acting as activists; they seized the moment. Until they didn’t, and were exposed by their own acts.
Vocal athletes, DeSean Jackson, Malcolm Jenkins, and Stephen Jackson, cluelessly invited the world into their minds. Minds that have been using racial injustice to grow their platforms. They shamefully painted it clear how low of a priority anti-Semitism is to them.
This was the same Jenkins who crushed and crucified Drew Brees for supporting the American flag. According to Jenkins, loving this country is racist, but anyone disgusted by Hitler is a distraction.
In the past week, the NBA further proved that its social justice awareness campaign is a phony marketing strategy, fooling the 30 and under demographic.
Dwyane Wade promotes himself as an individual who has zero-tolerance for hate speech. Yet, he tweeted that he stands with “leader” Nick Cannon for spewing hate toward white and Jewish people. Wade later claimed he wasn’t “fully informed.” Translation: he wasn’t fully informed his tweet would negatively impact his brand. For that, he is very sorry.
Last week, the NBA reaffirmed to the world that its allowance of social justice statements on the back of jerseys is another ploy to remain in good graces with Hollywood. Of course, that doesn’t include “Free Hong Kong.” That’d be bad for business.
LeBron James, the world’s most famous athletes, to no one’s surprise, had no issue with that decision. Oh no, LeBron was instead using his pull to free Adrian Wojnarowski for sending a “fuck you” to a senator. LeBron’s priority was freeing a wealthy reporter, not the citizens of Hong Kong.
As he always says, he’s more than an athlete.
This level of blatant hypocrisy and cowardice is concerning when displayed by anyone. Now, factor in these athletes are worshipped by the country’s impressionable youth. Star players are not questioned by young fans, they are listened to. Not dissimilar to the impact anti-semite Louis Farrakhan has on athletes.
This is Problem A. And needs to be addressed. But it’s not getting that as Problem B stems from those who should be holding these irresponsible athletes accountable. They’ve instead joined them.
It’s the media’s job to ask questions, get the truth, warn, and explain. That isn’t happening in sports, by and large. The media is as power-hungry and opportunistic as the athletes it covers.
The past few months played right into its wheelhouse; the media personalities saw the same opportunity the athletes saw. Given the climate, they sought to grow their brands pretending to fight inequality.
Like Jenkins, the media declared Brees supporting the flag an unforgivable sin. More offensive than what DeSean Jackson said. Far worse than LeBron bending the knee to China. Brees’ comments were more disgraceful than what the NFL supposedly didn’t do for Kaepernick. And more condemnable than what NASCAR fans could’ve done, but didn’t do to Bubba Wallace.
Furthermore, the NBA’s handling of China, its business partner, must have not been bad at all. It didn’t even make the topic sheet for most shows after Senator Hawley’s letter to Adam Silver. The media must have thought its lackadaisical coverage of the topic in October would suffice.
To sum it up more accurately: the topic isn’t advantageous to growing Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram followings.
The few times the controversy did pop up, it exposed more members of the sports media. Maria Taylor supported Wojnarowski after her employer’s attempt to save face by publicly stating his actions were inappropriate. Instead of questioning the NBA, Pat Forde made it about Senator Hawley. Jemele Hill, whose brand is fighting for what’s right, didn’t have an issue with the NBA’s handling, of course. She, too, stood up for Wojnarowski. Some even ran. On afternoon radio for ESPN, Stan Verrett was asked by a caller about “Free Hong Kong.” Verrett panicked and hung up on the caller like an FCC violation was committed. The issue meant so little to Charles Robinson, he was upset Wojnarowski apologized.
Either these personalities were told by their employers to not do their jobs, or they just truly don’t care about how China treats its citizens.
All of this is sad, terrifying, and dangerous. These people are frauds and shouldn’t be taken seriously anymore. It’s a tired act that’s catered to a small group of miserable extremists. And there aren’t enough of them to support it.
It has never worked, and it’s not going to this time, despite the increased aggression.
It doesn’t matter the topic. If a story is covered as aggressively and disproportionately one-sided as the mixture of sports and social issues has been, viewers leave. They flock to any semblance of an alternative.
The most recent example came last month when defunding the police was the new hard-hitting topic. Of course, not every American wants the police force they pay for with their taxes defunded and replaced by social workers. So, they went to Dan Bongino’s podcast to hear the other side. As a result, Bongino’s show was one of the most downloaded in the country.
Bongino agreed that the oversaturation of the same side spewed in the media was the reason for the change. “It’s no more complicated than this – people are tired of bullshitters,” Bongino told Outkick. “And that’s what the lib media has degenerated into. There’s always an appeal to truth and authenticity. And that’s what we offer.”
The coverage of police is eerily similar to that of Brees, Kaepernick, anti-Semitism, Wallace, and the NBA. Absurdly passionate, agenda-driven, and illogical.
To use Bongino words, it’s not complicated to figure out why Outkick’s radio show ranked No. 2 on Apple Podcast in the sports category this week. Or why Pardon My Take, which stays away from mainstream talking points, was the only sports podcast to register in the top 20 in June.
The media and athletes are in this together. They are both trying to profit off these hard-pressing issues. Meaning, they will together experience the downfall of their fraudulence.
The upcoming NFL season and the NBA’s return have been promoted as political rallies. The NBA hasn’t solved its two-year decline, it’s not going to. The NFL solved its last year; now it’s foolishly going back to 2016, when viewership collapsed.
Vocal athletes and media members feel like the past few months have been wins. Maybe so; they’ve picked up Twitter followers. But the next few, and beyond, will inevitably be crushing defeats.
It appears those most publicly concerned with racism, human rights, and equality aren’t actually that concerned at all.
15 CommentsLeave a Reply
Like my dad always said the bigger they are the harder they fall.. We shall see..
Excellent read. Outkick continues to deliver. Regretting not becoming a VIP member long before I did.
Great article. Hey Outkick, Bobby Burack needs more space! Daily alongside Jason Whitlock please. Thanks for the continued honesty!
Excellent article…makes all the sense in the world (the world we live in; not woke-world).
Instead of talking about and anticipating sports returning, we’re already talking about how many people are gonna dump sports when the woke versions show up on TV.
Excellent piece. There are two fundamental things at play here.
First, the vast majority of self-appointed “elites” that the author describes — media, celebs, fake activist athletes — despise America. No hyperbole. (That they do so from behind the walls of their gated mansions and penthouses enjoying lives of affluence that Solomon might have envied does not produce the expected cognitive dissonance.)
This country’s foundational principles of free speech, individual liberty, equal opportunity (not outcome), pluralism, God-given rights, objective truth — all of these are anathema to post-modern secular collectivists who view the world entirely through the prism of race and gender and have constructed a viciously tribalist grievance and spoils system enforced by government coercion and cultural ostracism for those who dissent. Pointing out that such people are brazen hypocrites with no fixed, guiding principles other than an unswerving commitment to their own advancement — while inarguable — is like lamenting that China is not sufficiently committed to human rights and government transparency.
In the not so distant past, even those who found themselves on opposite ends of the political and ideological spectrum could find common ground in shared (often unspoken) assumptions about American values and the belief that our country, while flawed, imperfect, marked by the stain of slavery (like every other civilization in the history of mankind) was, on balance, a force for good in the world. A place where millions came to seek freedom and opportunity. A nation characterized by generosity and generations of warriors who fought, bled and died to end slavery, Nazi genocide, the evil of Communism and murderous Islamic supremacism.
All that is gone. Decades of indoctrination by our institutions of higher learning has yielded a viciously intolerant priestly class which sees America as racist, imperialist, oppressive and evil. If you disagree, you will be silenced or punished. Witness Drew Brees’s struggle session and weep. The “mystic chords of memory” which join us as a people have been severed.
Which leads to the second point. Mr. Burack notes that our sports media are illegitimate frauds who are not behaving as journalists. Again, this is indisuptable to anyone with eyes to see but beside the point: they don’t define themselves as journalists. They used to pretend, but no more. Their job is not to be neutral, fair-minded reporters; no, their job is to be propagandists for their enlightened world view, and to attack and demonize any who oppose it. This is otherwise known as “tolerance” and being on the “right side of history.” They embrace this mission without shame, regret or a nano-particle of self-doubt. So, no reason to be stupefied that a guy who calls himself a journalist would, from his company account, lob an F-bomb at a U.S. Senator for the sin of challenging the league he purports to cover: that’s his calling. Think of Woj and the rest as well compensated palace guardians and it all makes sense.
What can we do to fix this state of affairs? Not a clue.
Right on Brother 🔥
“people are tired of bullshitters” Amen brother Dan
Articles like this remind me I haven’t gone insane.
Bobby, thank you for the work you and everyone else at Outkick are doing. These “brand builders” do not care about the violence they are promoting in inner cities. They do not care that more children will die if the police are defunded. They only care about their own “relevancy” and the checks they keep cashing.
Amen. Great take, appreciate the connection between the self promoters and the folks who enable them.
Youz Guys At Outkick 👏🏻
This was awesome. Perfect take and written in a way that anyone could understand. Straight to the point. A+
The EVIDENCE Movement has begun. We are countering the myths and lies perpetrated by the social justice warriors with our demands for EVIDENCE. They say: police are mowing down unarmed black men en masse — then they use anecdotal examples to support this claim. We say: show us the EVIDENCE; the numbers don’t support your claim. We say: the real problem is lack of father figures and black on black crime — and we HAVE the EVIDENCE. OutKick is terrifying the social justice warriors by using EVIDENCE to disprove their anecdotally-based and patently false claims. ROCK ON, OutKick.