Let The Rams Lead
Last Sunday as the St. Louis Rams entered on the field, five players entered with the symbolic "Hands Up, Don't Shoot" gesture to show support for the Ferguson community. Since then there has been a host of controversy around the moment including a bizarre back and forth about the nature of apologies with the St Louis Police and the Rams ownership, football legend Mike Ditka chiming in, and others saying they thought it was offensive. Those people can say whatever they want, but the bottom line is what those Rams players did was amazing, courageous, and something that we need A LOT more of these days.
Perhaps my sense of history is skewed because I have hippie parents but it seems like back in the day more people in spotlight took a stand on the issues that counted. I'm talking about rockstars like John Lennon, the 1968 black panther Olympians, and actors like Paul Newman. These days there is a lot of action on twitter, but protest and standing up for your beliefs shouldn't be limited to 140 characters or less.
I commend the RAMS because it was a highly public display from the people who are on the stage. Through their actions, they're igniting conversation, shining light on key issues, and getting the public involved. We need big statements to get the general public engaged! With the Eric Garner verdict yesterday, the continued civil unrest in Ferguson, and wars in the Middle East ramping up now seems like as good as time as ever for musicians, athletes, and other celebrities in the public eye to step up and lead. I'm not saying what side they need to be on, hell Charles Barkely has a lot to say, and while you may not agree with him at least he's making a statement.
When those five Rams five players came out of that tunnel with their hands up they took a risk. Already now they say they're getting death threats and I'm not surprised - When you take a stand, their are consequences. I just hope in the future it will be more than five players, it will be the whole team.