More Shoutouts to Everyday Heroes

Ideas and Issues

Pearl River     Not long ago we argued here that there needed to be some special praise for the quick action of people who grabbed smartphones or cameras to document police brutality and had the courage to take a stand for justice.  There are some other behind the scenes folks, some of whom we know, and some of whom are nameless, that also deserve a shoutout for putting their shoulders to the wall to push for social justice.

How about the Scrap Yard Dawgs semi-pro fast pitch women’s softball team from Conroe, Texas, north of Houston, for example?  After their general manager bragged to President Trump that the whole team stood up for the national anthem, the entire team resigned.  We could hope that at least one of those two men learned a lesson.

How about Nate Boyer, a former Green Beret, who was also a long snapper for the University of Texas following his Army service and played for the Seattle Seahawks in the 2015 preseason?  In 2016, after watching Colin Kaepernick sit during the national anthem in protest of police brutality and racism, he gave him the excellent advice to knell instead, combining both respect, dignity, and protest. Thanks to both men, especially Kaepernick’s courage and sacrifice, kneeling is now a universal tactical response to oppression.

Wow!  Remember when if you were a jock you were supposed to keep your mouth shut, do what the coach said, and be the sharp point of the culture wars for the right?  I can remember as a high school senior on the football team being held down so that my head could be shaved in a coach-inspired hazing exercise masked as team-building, but really a statement about long hair at the time.  Remember when Michael Jordan walked away from any controversy with his “all about the money” shtick?  All over now.  We hope!

At least it is we follow the women’s lead.  Maya Moore, women’s’ pro basketball star, who took a year off from her career in 2019 to work for the release of Jonathan Irons, who she believed was innocent and wrongly convicted and held in a Missouri prison for the last 23 years, celebrated with Irons, now 40, as he was released after a successful appeal that Moore supported and partially funded.  Who does that?  Amazing!  Say her name!!

Or how about the anonymous groups of teenagers who have leveraged social media and Google spreadsheets to collect and document racist and offensive behavior by others, complete with videos and screenshots?  They name names, and in some cases, it has led to colleges and universities retracting admission offers to applicants who stepped across the line.  Maybe it’s a high price to pay for juvenile missteps, but they have to learn, better sooner, than later.

Or the K-pop crews that registered an unknown number of people in protest of the Trump Tulsa rally?

Where there’s a will, there’s a way, and a lot of people are showing the way, making justice a little closer through their efforts.