Who really won the Super Bowl?

Super Bowl

Neither of the teams on the field won last week’s Super Bowl. Something wonderful happened along the way, and we had a consciousness-raising event.

So many who could’ve been performers for the halftime show said “NO” to invitations to be there. Others made it known before being asked that they would not perform if asked because they were supporting former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

On the right side

What they did was spectacular, but the issue is bigger than Colin. They were making a score for Black dignity. Some of them have made mistakes in the past, but on this issue they’re right.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell claims that NFL teams don’t believe Kaepernick could win games for them. That’s an excuse many of us have heard all of our lives when it comes to getting an opportunity to try. Even when we have proven skills, education and training above our competitors, we often lose to those who are inferior on all accounts. So as we say down South, “That dog won’t hunt.”

I’ve had my problems with some who support the cause for which Kaepernick took a knee, but their speaking out now says to me they at least know right from wrong. I’m not so sure if others get it, and whether they understand the power of unity.

Jermaine Dupree didn’t have to support the event. His work is already well-known and appreciated by many people. He’s already earned a lot of money, so why? It’s no sacrifice for him to support the cause. But instead, he chose to host a concert series called “Super Bowl Live.” The Super Bowl needs people like him more than he needs the Super Bowl. I guess social justice has no meaning for him.

Maybe nobody told those who insisted upon performing that Colin does not protest for himself. He does it to raise awareness to police brutality, racial inequality and other social issues.

Should have refused

The performer that hurts most is Gladys Knight singing the national anthem, because she’s so widely admired for her music. I realize Atlanta is her hometown, but she didn’t need the exposure.

Those who refused to support the Super Bowl are the real winners. I can only hope that those who could not resist performing will do something to redeem themselves. In the Black community, we always have important causes for which we have to fight, so all is not lost for them. They can still help to do something good for Black America.

Support needed

There is a voting rights and anti-corruption bill in Congress they can support. Bennett College urgently needs funds to stay open, as do many Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Congresswoman Lucy McBath from Atlanta already has challengers for the next election after winning her race just a few weeks ago. She could use early support to protect her seat. Senator Kamala Harris is leading the presidential race and could use help.

The Progressive National Baptists need support for their campaign against Wells Fargo for causing so many in the Black community to lose their homes; they ask that we stop banking with Wells Fargo.

The National Congress of Black Women, National Black Alliance and Clear the Airwaves need help with the Respect Us campaign by refraining from spending money with McDonald’s, Subway Restaurants, Kohl’s, JCPenney’s and Adidas so long as they spend their advertising dollars on radio stations that play hateful, derogatory, misogynistic rap.

Those are some of the ways all of us win something bigger than the Super Bowl.


Dr. E. Faye Williams is national chair of the National Congress of Black Women, Inc. 




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