Politics and sports have had a very, very strange relationship here in the United States as of late, and it’s only getting weirder.
For decades, sports were an extension of our collective mood. We could reflect the national atmosphere in almost any win or loss, and, just like the nature of the sports themselves, the emotional realities surrounding the game can also be seen in our reactions to it.
One example: As we were engaged in the Gulf War, and a whole new generation of Americans were really introduced to the concept of sending our soldiers overseas, Whitney Houston delivered a performance that couldn’t have come during a different time and place.
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But now, the sports world is reflecting something else entirely: The deep divide between Americans who are vying to make their patriotism the only patriotism.
One ESPN contributor, Dominque Foxworth, made waves by insinuating that he roots against the Buffalo Bills’ quarterback Josh Allen because some of Allen’s fans on Twitter fit a certain stereotype.
“I am fully aware that I have biases. And my biases are not based on Josh Allen. It’s based on the people that are defending Josh Allen. I would be 100% lying if I said that when Josh does something dumb, a little part of me doesn’t get happy. And it’s not because I don’t want Josh to succeed,” Foxworth said on Bomani Jones’ podcast, via Outkick.
“It’s because the people who are telling me that Josh is the second coming and Josh is better than everybody are people with American flags and dogs and skulls and crossbones. … If you go just take a dip into their tweet history, it’s some really concerning retweets and likes. … It’s not about Josh.”
This didn’t go over so well with other Buffalo Bills players.
Jordan Poyer and Jonathan Feliciano responded to the criticism.
“Hold up bruh,” Poyer wrote. “we not jus letting this slide, yeah?! @espn this what we on now in the sports world!? @Foxworth24 we gotta do better my brother… cause this ain’t it.”
Feliciano added: “ay @Foxworth24 are you talking about the fans that just raise over 700k for a hospital during a pandemic? Ppl do/say the corniest things to try n get ahead.”
Foxworth would go on to insist that he was taken out of context, but we’re not sure this non-apology will be enough to woo the Bills Mafia, who are undoubtedly one of the NFL’s great fandoms.
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