New American Pastimes: Sports, Racism and Social Media?

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SPANISH HARLEM, NY – A couple days ago, I read an article where someone vandalized LeBron James’ home by spray-painting the N-word for all to see. It made me stop looking at life through my sports-colored glasses and think about racism as whole. I asked myself this question, “Is America the Most Racist Country in the World?” Quickly, I came to my senses and thought, “No way.” I realized that other parts of the world are not more racist or less racist, but that racism exists everywhere. The difference between America and other countries is that it’s one of the most progressive countries when it comes to facing these issues… yet here we are.

Ron Schwane / Associated Press

Social media plays a role in it. Everything tweeted or written can be misconstrued. Accidentally write something the wrong way and expect to be vilified.  Social media plays a huge role in this interaction by allowing people with little knowledge of the issue to make demands and write about things they know very little about. That’s why I agree when James stated, “Racism will always be a part of the world, a part of America, and hate in America — especially for African-Americans — is living every day.” He reminded us that we are all different and that should be celebrated not hated.

Every person will have an idea of what they think racism is. The ideals will always differ but there are also times when an important issue about race can force people to join together for that particular common cause. The beauty of America is that we speak about it, march about it and make strides faster than ever. We can unite and fix the mistakes our country’s past. We can hold people more accountable now, make them feel obligated to change because it’s wrong and change needs to happen. Social media has helped transcend the way people look at everything and gave the voice back to the people. By giving everyone a voice, some bad things have come with it, specifically that anyone can say anything while under a facade. People can write hurtful things without almost any repercussion. People can send deaths threats because your ideals don’t match theirs. There is an ugly side to this information being out there and that will never change.

I sit here writing this, knowing full well that we are constantly changing, constantly growing… and hopefully trying to be the very best people we can be. I have seen this country make strides and vote in the first black President; something I thought I would never see in my lifetime. If you had the chance to ask me why at that time, I would’ve said, “Because this country will always be racist.” And just when you thought everything was right with the world, America voted-in a President about as controversial as one person can be. I say controversial because he has proven to have some of the worst personality triats a person can have. Of course I will be judged by my feelings on this issue… that’s fine.

America will always be racist, no matter how hard we fight to end it… it will get better, trust me. But it will never go away. The best thing about this presidency and the issue of race playing a big part in it? We will never allow the country to vote for somebody like this to represent us again. That in itself is a small victory.

Now back to your regular programming: Matt Harvey sucked again.

Come back to tomorrow for a guy that never sucks, @CheesyBruin. Also, feel free to comment below and please follow us on Twitter @BuddyDiaz19, @MeetTheMatts & @Matt_McCarthy00Instagram @MeetTheMatts and like our Facebook pages, Meet The Matts & Buddy Diaz.

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