NFL draftees seemingly know extra about ‘politics’ and the way it impacts their lives than Tuberville
This is a split opinion.
I’m so glad Tommy Tuberville no longer trains young men. I’m glad it doesn’t affect her thoughts – at a time in her life when curiosity and awareness of her nation, her world, everything outside of her locker room bubble should be indelible.
Because he clearly doesn’t respect her. Do not believe in their right to think. Or grow. To speak especially.
On the day of the 2021 National Football League Draft, the day that rewarded years of hard work, discipline and overcoming as a lifelong dream came true for 32 young men whose names were mentioned during the opening round, the football coach reached out to the United States Senator gave some advice for anyone tabbed to begin their NFL career: “… downplay politics and be more involved in what you do.”
This is not that coded shutdown and run code. Do not try to learn more about the issues that shape your world and that affect your life. Don’t talk about things that you think are unfair. Don’t go into injustice.
Why? Because politics “… is something you may not understand much”.
Tuberville, who advises everyone to keep quiet about something they know little about, is the funniest thing I’ve heard all week. No question. Even if it weren’t so repulsive.
Had he followed his own advice, we might be represented in the Senate in August by someone who actually knew the three branches of government.
Someone who would encourage young men to use their voices to be proud of their platforms as leaders in their families, in their home neighborhoods, and on their college campuses to make change happen. To proclaim injustice. Shed light on inequalities. Just like generations of young men like her. Even if it was more dangerous.
Someone who might even have marched next to them.
By now you know that Tuberville was caught on Capitol Hill by TMZ Sports this week asking what advice he would give to the young men who are about to draft. Given Tuberville’s mixed tenures as head coach at Ole Miss, Auburn, Texas Tech, and Cincinnati, that was a harmless question. But instead of giving encouraging advice, he said:
“I think people should downplay politics more and get more involved in what they’re doing. Everyone wants to give an opinion, and that’s fine, but especially when young people are getting into something they may not understand very well, they have to justify it to people, whatever their job.
“Don’t be quiet, just be careful. Talk about what you know and be gentle with your speech. Also, treat people with humility. I think that’s great. … Nobody is looking for an outspoken person. We are too divided as it is. “
There are a lot of Gobbledy books out there that we expected from the freshman Senator. There is even a clever nugget – treating people with humility.
Everything else, well, you understand the basics.
… something that you may not understand very much … let people … do what they do for a living … just be careful … no one is looking for an outspoken person …
Here we pray that young men starting their careers will fulfill their dreams of football success.
Again, it is prayed that they will not be gentle or careful when standing, marching, or even kneeling against injustice or injustice.
Here it is prayed that they will be trained to be the best men they can be – the men they have to be.
Given the life many of them have lived, the insightful, passionate conversations they have had with their peers, teammates, and people who infuse them with wisdom – the people they coach.
People even marched alongside them like Nick Saban last year with six young men selected in the first round and their Tide teammates.
Given what they have seen, I dare venture that many of these young men understand more about “politics” and how it affects their lives than Tuberville condescends to believe.
Unfortunately much more than Tuberville.
Roy’s column is a voice on what is right and wrong in Birmingham, Alabama (and beyond). It appears on the Birmingham News and AL.com, as well as the Huntsville Times, the Mobile Register. Reach him at [email protected] and follow him at twitter.com/roysj