Imagine earning over $79 million to play football, burning countless bridges with three prominent NFL franchises, getting your own reality television show and still making it into the Pro Football Hall of Fame … and then claiming to be “scared” to live in the country that provided you with all those opportunities.
Ex-NFL superstar and noted malcontent and Terrell Owens made that exact claim in a recent interview.
Owens, whose enormous on-field football talents were only overshadowed by his penchant for being a diva, spoke to TMZ this week in the wake of the Jacob Blake shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
“As black men, bro, we’re getting killed at an alarming rate now,” Owens said right out of the gate.
The issues with that opening statement are twofold.
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First and foremost, while an “alarming rate” can certainly be subjective, a lot of the statistics suggest that “alarm” is mostly a fabrication of mainstream media fearmongering.
The Washington Post, which has done plenty of investigative sleuthing on police killings, reported in June: “The overwhelming majority of people killed [by police] are armed. Nearly half of all people fatally shot by police are white.”
And since 2015, “The number of black and unarmed people fatally shot by police has declined,” the outlet added
To be fair, the Post also noted that although “rates for unarmed shootings have fallen significantly, compared with the total population, unarmed blacks are still killed by police at a higher rate than unarmed whites.”
At the very least, Owens’ comments lack significant context, which leads to the second issue with his opening remarks.
Given Owens’ prominence and potential for influence, not unlike that of the mainstream media, it’s downright irresponsible to push these narratives without the proper context during these particularly turbulent societal times.
Owens further fanned the flames of distrust in police with his next wildly unrealistic claim.
“Its only a matter if time until they kill somebody … where they’re not going to care,” Owens said.
“It’s going to create a riot, it’s going to create more tension between the black race and law enforcement. And you don’t want it to get to that point.
“But at some point, you know, it’s like they’re going to kill the wrong person.”
Owens then tried to feed into the overbearing leftist narrative that black people need to be scared of the police.
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“This is why we as black men, black people, we’re scared. And honestly, man, I really didn’t really think about it until like just driving around today, like honestly, it’s scary to be a black man in America, especially if you come in any type of encounter with law enforcement,” Owens said.
On the broadest level, the issue with the narrative that Owens and other leftists are peddling is that it presents a zero-sum, black-and-white situation (no pun intended).
When it comes to the shooting of Jacob Blake, the only options shouldn’t have to be, “Cops are evil, Blake was a martyr,” or, “Blake deserved what he got, all cops are heroes.”
Presenting an either/or situation like that does nothing to help anyone.
Could you imagine the meaningful discourse we could have if Owens, instead of parroting misleading talking points and mongering fear, wanted to talk about actual solutions?
What could Blake have done instead of resist arrest? Why couldn’t three police officers subdue a single man? Why were police called on Blake in the first place? Were seven shots to Blake’s back really necessary?
Those are uncomfortable, difficult questions worth discussing that most people, including Owens, are ignoring in favor of divisive “all-or-nothing” rhetoric.
People like Owens and entities like the mainstream media seem more than content driving a further wedge in an ailing society with these types of dichotomies.
And that, impressively, is a bigger disappointment than even “The T.O. Show.”
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