Michael Bennett: Protest for equality needs a few white faces

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Seattle defensive end Michael Bennett has been the most outspoken of late, among the players protesting during the national anthem by sitting or raising a fist.

And he’d like to have a little more help in the effort — specifically from a white player.

It would take a white player to really get things changed,” Bennett said during an appearance on ESPN. “Because when somebody from the other side understands and they step up and they speak up about it, . . . it would change the whole conversation. Because when you bring somebody who doesn’t have to be a part of [the] conversation making himself vulnerable in front of it, I think when that happens, things will really take a jump.”

Bennett joined a group of players carrying out the work started last year by then-49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, as has Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch. Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins has continued his protests, along with a few other players disturbed by issues of racial inequality.

Other than Eagles defensive end Chris Long — who decried the racism that overtook the city he grew up in (Charlottesville, Va.) last weekend, along with the lack of leadership in the aftermath — few white players have spoken out about the issues.

Bennett said he was stirred by watching those scenes, where white supremacists and neo-Nazis clashed with counter-protesters before a woman was killed and 19 were injured when a car was driven into a crowd.

“Over the weekend, so much violence, so much hate,” Bennett said. “I just wanted to remember why we were American citizens, remember the freedom, the liberty and the equality, make sure we never forget that. I really wanted to honor that, the founding principles of what we’re all supposed to be. Charlottesville was so crazy, so much going on in the world now, it just made sense.”

When he says it like that, you realize the issues aren’t necessarily about black and white. They’re about right and wrong, as Long pointed out.

82 responses to “Michael Bennett: Protest for equality needs a few white faces

  1. Michael, I completely agree with you (and thank you).

    All people of good conscience should decry systemic racism and police brutality (among other injustices plaguing America) loudly and unequivocally. The Charlottesville incident should be a wake-up call to everyone, especially those who criticize Kaepernick and Bennett for taking a principled stance.

    Btw, I’m a white guy.

  2. I still don’t get why peaceful protesting of kneeling during the anthem is viewed as hateful acts of defiance. I kinda thought the right to peaceful protest was something that made our country stand out. Seems many people got more bent out of shape at Kaepernick & company’s kneeling than with the far less than peaceful protests in Charlottesville

  3. This “If you criticize Kaepernick it means you support the hate groups in Charlottesville” thing I’ve seen floated around social media (and posted by the yahoo first commentator on this story) is utterly nonsensical.

    Kaepernick wasn’t protesting white hate groups. Kaepernick was protesting the “horrible pigs” that put their lives on the line patrolling the streets day in and day out.

  4. I’m white, and Michael Bennett is absolutely correct. If you care about decency, justice, and equality for EVERY citizen, then you need to think long and hard about what this country is doing to people based on their race. And if you aren’t thinking about it, then that makes you part of the problem.

  5. I’m sure you could get plenty of white players and people to protest with you. Not by sitting or kneeling for the National Anthem though. And referring to white players as the “other side” is probably not going to help you out.

  6. Bennett said during an appearance on ESPN. “Because when somebody from the other side understands

    This is part of the problem, they see White people as “the other side”. I guess this is progress because generally when you disagree with them you are labeled a racist or a bigot, so I guess being on “the other side” is an upgrade…

  7. How about doing something in Chicago Michael?
    I admire the desire but what exactly is he looking for? Start in the streets of Chicago where another 30 people were gunned down over the weekend. Have a sit down with Mayor Emmanuel about what you can do to help. Start there.

  8. The Antifa crowd and tbe Nazi losers deserve each other. To try and piggyback these ridiculous hineous event with Kaepernick’s stance is beyond stupid. Selma is over. The Media is using hate on both sides to manipulate opinion. Violence occurred in California by the alt left were people awoken to injustice? No? What exactly is the message? The overall evaluation is that we have violence in Chicago that is ignored. We have BLM who called for killing of cops in nyc. How can we take anything seriously when all violence in all forms is not repudiated. When your messanger wore socks which depictedcops as pigs you have a real problem with getting your message out to half the population.

  9. My sports entertainment should not be used as a platform for politics. It’s an escape for me. Continue with it and watch the sport ERODE and die – just like ESPN.

  10. A protest designed to deliberately offend others is not at all likely to sway others toward your point of view.

  11. maybe it’s because the vast majority of white people don’t identify with the skinheads/nazis and identity politics. So the few loons are just ignored.

  12. “The other side”…..isn’t that assuming something….I didn’t know I was on the other side.

  13. when only 1% of blacks are killed by police and 90% of blacks are killed by blacks, what is the real problem that we are ignoring???

  14. Give me a break, tired of hearing about the black man being kept down. When you start acting like a normal part of society. You will be treated like a normal part of society. More white men are killed by police every year. But we do not protest because some criminal got killed.

  15. Charlotteville was a fake incident sponsored by Soros and the DNC. 2 to 1 cops their that was told to stand down and the car that hit the people was seen driving away.

  16. I think part of the problem for white people is figuring out what exactly the kneel down supports. Standing against white supremacy and neo nazism is easy but what is Kap kneeling for?

    And if someone who is white (like me) says what is considered to be the wrong thing by protesting players, that person would be labeled a racist.

    What we need is real respectful dialogue. But that doesn’t ever seem to happen.

  17. the fact that this BOZO thinks the white players on his team are on ‘the other side’ is a peek into the frightening reality that is the warped thought process of these moronic millionaire ‘protesters’

  18. Muchael bennett you want white faces to support your cause? Then start caring about white victims and black on white crimes and not just one sided outrage. Stop expecting and wanting more from others than your willing to do.

  19. “Someone from the other side” <– Here's why people who care, still don't get involved in this non-sense. Because even if you agree with him and you're willing to "take a stand" for his cause, you're still "from the other side" according to him because your white.

    These social justice causes accomplish exactly 1 thing… prolonged racism and dividing the country. You guys got what you wanted in Baltimore… cops have completely backed off. Now predictably homicide rates and violent crimes are shooting back up and MORE young black men are dead as a result of it. They don't care about that though. Apparently as long as they weren't killed by a cop under questionable circumstances, all is well in the world…

  20. “It would take a white player to really get things changed”…

    What would change, and how?

    I swear these players don’t have a f***ing clue what they are talking about sometimes. I’m well aware and bothered by the injustices in our country but what exactly is bringing a white guy into your little “protest” going to accomplish?

  21. Different than Kaep’s viewpoint a bit where he was focusing on hating Police, Castro and calling it black n white. Bennett seems to be saying hate is wrong.

  22. I still don’t get why peaceful protesting of kneeling during the anthem is viewed as hateful acts of defiance. I kinda thought the right to peaceful protest was something that made our country stand out. Seems many people got more bent out of shape at Kaepernick & company’s kneeling than with the far less than peaceful protests in Charlottesville
    —-

    Let me clear this up for you so maybe you see the point.

    “I still don’t get why someone peacefully sticking their hand in the air to salute hitler during a march on someone’s own private time is viewed as hateful acts of defiance. I kinda thought the right to peaceful protest was something that made our country stand out.”

    Now do you see how dumb your comment sounds? Like many liberals, you will change your opinion based on who’s doing it. The difference is most people with common sense see they are both disturbing and have deeper meaning than just the “Peaceful” physical actions they are doing.

  23. “It’d take a white man” of course, blame us whites. “The other side” hmm, sounds pretty racist to me. And sorry, Bennett, us white people are more civilized than that. We go to work, instead of protesting over non sense.

  24. “Because when somebody from the other side understands and they step up and they speak up about it”

    When you start saying the “other side”, you start segregating. How can we come together and confront issues if there is a your side and a my side?

    It shouldn’t be.

  25. When you’re silent about cops being ambushed and murdered (evey single kneel player and the NFL has been), expect people to assume you’re a hypocrite and therefore not actually interested in what you say you’re interested in and are just playing politics.

  26. why would i protest this? he thinks that a black man that commits a crime and attacks a police officer shouldn’t be shot. you commit a crime and attack a cop or have a gun its the police officers job to protect the law abiding citizens and they don’t shoot to harm they shoot to kill. why are they not protesting the blacks killing the blacks? thats 90% of the deaths and thats drug related. I also have a son that did 2 tours of duty in afghanistan and a son in law in the navy. I would knock him on his ass if i ever got the chance.

  27. Liberals telling others what to do and how to think, what a surprise.

    If you want to raise “social justice issues” be my guest, but don’t piss on the flag! It the absolute worst way to go about it, it just pisses people off and causes more division.

  28. I’m with Michael Bennett. Why stop at just removing statues? After all they just represent the despicable historical record of the Democratic party and the scourge of not only their white supremacist theories they wrote extensively about, but also for the Klu Klux Klan, which they formed to serve as the party’s intimidation shock troops to keep Black Americans from voting Republican for a hundred years. Why just stop at statues when we can cleanse our national psyche from the historical abomination of the Democrat Party.

  29. The like/dislike ratio of the first three comments is a sad commentary on the state of our country. How can that many people dislike anti-racist statements?

  30. When black players start holding remembrance ceremonies for cops murdered in the line of duty, then I’ll join in their “protest for equality”.

  31. Protests by marginally performing employees during work time are frowned upon by most employers.

    And FYI, here in Detroit the white suburban population has been told in no uncertain terms to stay the hell out of Detroit issues, because it’s not their business. So I’m not surprised that whites are somewhat apathetic to black causes. It’s a real shame all around.

  32. What was that thing the prominent newscaster said about not telling people when they should or shouldent protest just last week? Let people make up their own mind, dont shame them into protesting for the cause you believe in.

  33. Equality of what?
    I want equality with his income, when do I get that?
    Got breaking news for everyone, life is not equal, everyone does not get the same breaks, deal with it. Live your life and do your best.
    Education is the key, not ones ability to play football or basketball.

  34. Nah, my ancestors fought in the civil war, my grandparents and parents fought through civil rights, and I was raised not to judge someone by appearance. I grew up with posters of Magic, Tim Brown, Tiger Wooods on my walls and worshipped those guys! I have Michael Jackson, Metallica, biggie, hank Williams, Tupac, Chris Stapleton on my music list. It will never be good enough because yet I’m still blanketly labeled with all white people, it will never be good enough because minorities are more racist than anyone! Well, I say I’m diversified and its time for all our other cultures to start diversifying too and quit complaining….

  35. Freedom of speech is not the same as freedom from consequences. Michael Bennet and Colin Kaepernick have their first amendment right to protest whatever they want, however, if their beliefs do not coincide with the beliefs of an NFL team, a privately held organization, the team does not have to sign them.

    The problem with this country is that nobody, the left or the right, wants to listen to an opinion that differs from theirs. Was the guy who ran over that young lady in Charlottesville wrong? Of course, it was domestic terrorism and he should be locked away for the rest of his life. Are the white supremacists and Neo Nazis fundamentally wrong in their ideaollogy? Of course they are. HOWEVER, everyone in this country, even white supremacists and Neo Nazis as disgusting as they are, have the right to free speech. When the left and the media start deciding what you can and can’t say, that is dangerous territory. Im sorry, but the first amendment is more important than your feelings. Im not a fan of Trump, but he was not wrong when he said both sides are to blame. If that offends you, google the photographic evidence of counter protestors charging at the protestors with baseball bats.

  36. Could you imagine the complete and utter pants filling, poo flinging breakdown if someone like Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers stepped up? Epic.

    And I say this as a Packers fan.

  37. ezpkns34 says:
    August 17, 2017 at 6:25 am
    I still don’t get why peaceful protesting of kneeling during the anthem is viewed as hateful acts of defiance. I kinda thought the right to peaceful protest was something that made our country stand out. Seems many people got more bent out of shape at Kaepernick & company’s kneeling than with the far less than peaceful protests in Charlottesville

    ——————————————————————————————-

    You don’t understand it because you don’t want to understand it. It’s wrong to demonstrate your political beliefs on an NFL football field. That’s what 90% of the people are upset with in regard to what these players are doing.
    If Kaepernick held a town meeting somewhere to voice his opinions, I’d have way less of a problem with him. I still think he’s wrong to send the message to young black kids that all cops are bad, which is exactly what he’s doing, and I think he’s wrong to make race relations worse by what he is doing, which is also exactly what he’s doing.
    I’ll ask you the same question I have put in here for weeks. If he were a white southern boy and he held up a Confederate flag during the National Anthem, would that be okay with you, too? I’d bet the ranch you’d say “no” and I’d be all over him for that, too.
    They hypocrisy here is all with those who defend Kaepernick. Because they defend any action which they happen to agree with, but not any which differs from their beliefs. The best example I can give is when Donald Trump was elected. What did we hear from liberals and blacks as soon as the election was over? We heard “he’s not our President” and we heard “let’s do everything we can do to sabotage his presidency”. That is a bunch of crap but it’s the truth.
    It’s why Americans are fed up with liberals and fed up with people like Kaepernick.
    As for Charlottesville, I think what Trump said was true. Both sides were responsible for what happened there. Don’t get me wrong, if I had my way those white supremacists would never be allowed to gather and espouse their hate. And neither would black groups or any other ethnic groups be allowed to do that. But the fact is, both groups start hurling obscenities at each other and then bottles and other things were thrown at each other, which escalated into rioting and more violence.
    Here’s the deal, folks. You can’t have it both ways. If you think Kaepernick has the right to demonstrate his political opinion on the football field, then white supremacists have the right to march and demonstrate their beliefs, no matter how sick you think they are.
    The analogy of yelling “fire” in a movie theater applies here. It is unlawful to yell “fire” in a packed movie theater because common sense says it could cause a lot of people to panic and run, and injuries would most certainly occur. Technically, yelling “fire” falls under freedom of speech, right? But common sense prevails and we accept it is wrong to do that and therefore against the law.
    It’s the same with what Kaepernick is doing. He is bringing his political beliefs to his job, causing a disruption. That is totally unacceptable, just as it is where I work. If I did that where I work I would be told in no uncertain circumstances to knock it off — or else. In fact, I work for a school system and I am restricted on wearing shirts or hats which offer anything which might seem offensive to someone.
    Think about this — if you were an owner of an NFL football team, would you want to deal with all this controversy caused by Kaepernick and other black players, which has zero to do with the NFL? The answer is no and the answer is they have every right to tell Kaepernick and these other players to leave their political views outside the stadiums. But they are afraid to do it because they know it will cause people like Al Sharpton to play the race card.
    Racism is a two way street. There are racists in every corner of the globe from every ethnic group. There are blacks in the NFL who are racists. Anyone who pretends that they aren’t in the NFL is hiding the truth.

  38. How fitting is it that a professional football player wants equality??? I will gladly take equal pay for what I do for a living. Is he going to protest when a white person is shot & killed by a black person????/ HELL NO, he isn’t!!!!! Screw these overpaid crybaby B!TC#3$!!! Equality?????HA HA HA, Take less pay so games are cheaper for the average American can attend, Michael. Selfish lowlife POS!!!!!!

  39. Stuff like this just makes me not want to watch the NFL any longer. I have been a football fan my whole life. Sick and tired of these guys. Have some respect for this country or get out please! Just sayin.

  40. To any commenter with a 10:1 like:dislike ratio on race-related threads: if you want this issue to go away, first of all stop equating white supremacy with activist groups such as BLM that simply want equal rights and justice under the law.

    It’s really difficult for POC to “have some respect for this country” when it enslaved their ancestors, subjected them to Jim Crow for another hundred years and continues to treat them as disposable people (redlining, gerrymandering, gutting of the voting rights act, etc.).

    But I get it: its easier to deflect with racist dogwhistles such as “antifa” or “alt-left” rather than deal with the problem.

  41. Bennett needs to understand that white men (other than the racist ones) have been conditioned not to talk about race because every time they do they are immediately accused of being racist or ignorant to their racism.

  42. Why do these players think we are not “aware” of police brutality and murdering of minorities?

    We are aware.

    We are on your side, but we have no control over how police departments hire their people.

    They need to do a better job of vetting who they hire, use marijuana taxes in each state to raise the salaries to make the job more attractive and hire better officers.

    For example, the state police shouldn’t pay more and bring on superior officers compared to town/city/county officers.

    That has NEVER made any sense.

    If Teddy Roosevelt was still alive this wouldn’t be going on.

  43. I thought Bennett played football and meant the other team when he said “the other side”

    Does he hit white guys harder than black guys ?……NO….he plays football and the other side is the other side.
    Whats going to happen if the “other side” cheap shots him on the field and ends his season ?

    These guys should just play and don’t set yourself up as a target on the field because if there really is “the other side” don’t you think somebody might be angry enough to put him out ?

    Protest all you want but if you do it at work there are always repercussions

  44. I went to a protest that was planned and they said there would be about 20,000 people there and come to find out it was just the Chargers and Seahawks playing a football game at a High School Stadium

    I get the whole protest thing but using your job to promote it is wrong…..I go to or watch football on TV to enjoy the game and not to hear about the latest protest of the day
    For 3 hrs I like NOT having to listen to what ails society but rather enjoy watching great athletes playing a violent game…..Kinda like the Romans did at the coliseum but hopefully nobody dies at the end…..thank god

    How far do you think a protest would have lasted there ?
    Thumbs Down from the boss for sure

  45. cdace13 says:
    August 17, 2017 at 6:41 am
    How about doing something in Chicago Michael?
    I admire the desire but what exactly is he looking for? Start in the streets of Chicago where another 30 people were gunned down over the weekend. Have a sit down with Mayor Emmanuel about what you can do to help. Start there.
    ———————
    Just because you want to Save The Whales doesn’t mean you don’t care about dolphins

  46. “Let me clear this up for you so maybe you see the point.

    “I still don’t get why someone peacefully sticking their hand in the air to salute hitler during a march on someone’s own private time is viewed as hateful acts of defiance. I kinda thought the right to peaceful protest was something that made our country stand out.”

    Now do you see how dumb your comment sounds? Like many liberals, you will change your opinion based on who’s doing it. The difference is most people with common sense see they are both disturbing and have deeper meaning than just the “Peaceful” physical actions they are doing.”

    So kneeling in during the anthem puts Kaepernick on par with being a nazi sympathizer? But no mention of the recent vehicular manslaughter by actual neo-nazis? I’m just trying to understand the visceral hatred for kneeling during the anthem. Should I be standing at home when the anthem plays? I mean, I’d hate to be confused with being one of the Hitler Youths

  47. Bennett said during an appearance on ESPN. “Because when somebody from the other side understands

    This is part of the problem, they see White people as “the other side”. I guess this is progress because generally when you disagree with them you are labeled a racist or a bigot, so I guess being on “the other side” is an upgrade…
    ——————
    Who exactly is “them”?

  48. ” I’m just trying to understand the visceral hatred for kneeling during the anthem.”

    It comes from fox news. They told half of america to be upset and they mindlessly obey.

  49. The cops are the other side! I’m a white guy and what we really need is police reform. in many modernized nation’s the cops don’t carry guns. this country imprisons more people per capita than any other country on earth and the cops here kill more whites per year than blacks. So please don’t drink the propagandists Kool aid. We are all oppressed in this country most people just don’t know it because you’ve all been told this is the land of the free since kindergarten. The first true step to freedom in this country is to demilitarize and disarm law enforcement then and only then will we see change.

  50. I’m sorry. When someone making millions of dollars per year screams about oppression while wearing a Fidel Castro T shirt, I can’t take that person seriously.

    Oh, by the way, Nazis are evil scum, and no one who marches alongside them can be considered a “fine person”. You’d think even someone as belligerently moronic as Donald Trump would get that right, but nooooooo…

  51. Very self-serving on behalf of Mr. Bennett.
    “We need a white guy for anything to change.”
    So if no white guys decide they loathe this country enough to take a seat or a knee along with he and Kaep during the anthem….well then…I guess we know where all the white guys in the NFL stand on social injustice, right?
    This is all you, Mike. Don’t deliberately drag anyone else into your personal agenda.

  52. thedoctlc says:
    August 17, 2017 at 12:46 pm
    To any commenter with a 10:1 like:dislike ratio on race-related threads: if you want this issue to go away, first of all stop equating white supremacy with activist groups such as BLM that simply want equal rights and justice under the law.

    =========================================================================================
    BLM has actively campaigned at their rallies for the assassination of police officers, with chants of “What we want? Dead cops!! When do we want it?? Now!!” This is not in dispute. Yet I did not hear Michael Bennett or anyone else on this website calling out BLM for hate speech or inciting violence. There were no calls from the media or sports personalities to denounce BLM’s hate speech. If you think BLM is only interested in equal rights, you are not informed enough about their purpose or their activism.

  53. Martellus and Michael Bennett are no doubt members of the black panthers. These racist pigs cannot go more than minute without bringing up race and the inequality that doesn’t exist.

  54. “To any commenter with a 10:1 like:dislike ratio on race-related threads: if you want this issue to go away, first of all stop equating white supremacy with activist groups such as BLM that simply want equal rights and justice under the law.”

    BLM simply wants equal rights? Maybe you have forgotten their chant of “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon” or their other equally disgusting, offensive chants and signs that said “kill all white people”. Or how about their violent protests and their rioting and ambushing of those Dallas cops. Is that the way to get equal rights and justice? With those actions, they deserve NONE of those rights. Act like decent human beings and your position, protests and voices will be better heard and understood. Racism is a two way street and by acting out in the way that they have, not only are they not curing racism, they are actually creating it and INCREASING it.

  55. cosmicredneck81 says:
    August 17, 2017 at 1:31 pm
    The cops are the other side! I’m a white guy and what we really need is police reform. in many modernized nation’s the cops don’t carry guns. this country imprisons more people per capita than any other country on earth and the cops here kill more whites per year than blacks. So please don’t drink the propagandists Kool aid. We are all oppressed in this country most people just don’t know it because you’ve all been told this is the land of the free since kindergarten. The first true step to freedom in this country is to demilitarize and disarm law enforcement then and only then will we see change.
    ———————————

    Yes, because once the police are “demilitarized and disarmed,” criminals will do the same…..smh…..

  56. rodgerstonelson says:

    Give me a break, tired of hearing about the black man being kept down. When you start acting like a normal part of society. You will be treated like a normal part of society. More white men are killed by police every year. But we do not protest because some criminal got killed.

    ==================================================================================================================

    At least you admit PoC aren’t on equal footing. That’s a start.

  57. trollpatrol says:

    BLM simply wants equal rights? Maybe you have forgotten their chant of “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon” or their other equally disgusting, offensive chants and signs that said “kill all white people”. Or how about their violent protests and their rioting and ambushing of those Dallas cops. Is that the way to get equal rights and justice? With those actions, they deserve NONE of those rights. Act like decent human beings and your position, protests and voices will be better heard and understood. Racism is a two way street and by acting out in the way that they have, not only are they not curing racism, they are actually creating it and INCREASING it.

    ===================================================================================================================================================

    Classic “whataboutism” and deflection that doesn’t withstand the slightest bit of scrutiny. So your tender sensibilities are offended by some angry chants against systematic racism/white supremacy? Try being on the receiving end of rape, theft and murder for 400+ years.

  58. “Classic “whataboutism” and deflection that doesn’t withstand the slightest bit of scrutiny. So your tender sensibilities are offended by some angry chants against systematic racism/white supremacy? Try being on the receiving end of rape, theft and murder for 400+ years.”

    I do believe white folks have been on the receiving end of rape, theft and murder for 400+ years also. In fact, every race has. Why act like only blacks have ever been the victim of crime? Evil acts by evil people don’t care what color you are. What color were the victims of the holocaust? Get my point? Now let me turn the tables on your question about being offended by angry chants….if the shoe were reversed and white folks went down the street today chanting “kill all black people”, would black folks be up in arms? Yes, they would and rightfully so! No one should have that much hate in their heart to make those chants no matter what your skin color is. I’ve always been one to say the only race is the human race and BOTH SIDES need to remember that and work toward building a future together instead of tearing each other down over the past which cannot be changed.

  59. Bennett and Long are the ones who don’t get it – “equality” is an excuse to explain away why a person succeeds for fails of his own volition and effort. Bennett is wrong on the particulars of “equality” issues because he approaches it from a deterministic angle instead of an objective one.

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