Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, a Stanford graduate, is a smart guy. So he must believe in due process. Right?
Maybe not. He sounds like he wants the police officers in Tulsa and Charlotte to be punished before their cases are adjudicated.
“The last few days a couple of more more guys have been shot and killed in the middle of the street,” Sherman said on Wednesday. “That’s the reason these guys [in the NFL] are kneeling and locking arms to bring people together, to make people aware this is not right. It’s not right for people to be killed in the street.”
Speaking of kneeling and interlocking arms, one team with two players doing the former and the other with all players doing the latter play on Sunday. Sherman’s Seattle Seahawks host Time magazine coverboy Colin Kaepernick’s San Francisco 49ers. With shootings of citizens by police in Tusla and Charlotte generating headlines and sparking unrest this week, expect more of the same from these two teams—and perhaps expect something more, too.
“When you tell a kid, ‘When you’re dealing with police, just put your hands up and comply with everything,’ and there’s still a chance of them getting shot and no repercussions for anyone,” Sherman explained. “that’s an unfortunate time to be living.”
It’s also an unfortunate time when player activists and some in the media eschew due process. Just ask former Ferguson, Missouri, police officer Darren Wilson, who was cleared of all charges in the death of Michael Brown, but the media and activists ruined his life convicting him in the court of public opinion. Evidence in Charlotte points to an ex-con with numerous weapons convictions told to put down a gun at least a dozen times before an African American officer (who played football at Liberty) shot him. Despite activists claiming the suspect held a book and not a gun, police found the man’s DNA and prints on the firearm. Courts of law require a higher evidentiary threshold than the scuttlebutt standard used in the court of public opinion.
Speaking of the court of public opinion, the NFL players better be careful with the national anthem protests. They could turn off some patriotic fans. Lower ratings suggest this has already occurred. And a Yahoo poll showing 44 percent of respondents willing to turn off the NFL if the protests continue indicates that the ratings could drop if athletes continue to drop for the anthem.