This year people became familiar with Cam Newton and the skepticism that surrounds him. In an article I read recently hall of fame quarterback Warren Moon discussed more about why people viewed Cam in such a distasteful manner. Moon attributed peoples dislike and criticism to Newton’s race. Moon knows all to well what being the center of racism feels like, during his career Moon was considered to not be a real quarterback and to be just a wide receiver playing quarterback.
After reading this article I immediately thought about the racism and stereotyping that my teammates and I face playing football at Purdue. A constant reaction I receive from strangers I meet in class always assume that I am an athlete.Being a six foot and 190 pound man I do not look like an athlete in street clothes but people believe that I am football player because I am a black man at Purdue. When I ask people why they believe me to be an athlete because I am black they laugh and say why else would you be at Purdue the only black people here I know are athletes. I know the intent behind what they say is not meant to be racist but it does come off as such.
Other criticisms that my teammates and I face is the label of the dumb uneducated black man . In some of my classes people are surprised when me and my teammates do well in class. Most of the time people attribute our success to cheating or getting graded more leniently because we are football players. Never do they attribute our success to working hard and caring about our grade in the class.
When we are not wearing our football uniforms some people act distant from us and treat us differently. People are cautious to approach us because they assume that we are like the stereotypical black man who is looked at as a thug and as an individual who is unapproachable.
“When I am in class sometimes people are hesitant to sit next to me or be in a group with me,” said defensive tackle Johnny Daniels.”I believe they think because I am black and a football player that I am lazy and will not help with the group work.”