Monday, September 6, 2010

Dr. Boyce Watkins: NFL Announcer Should be Suspended for Offensive Remark about Katrina

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

NFL Hall of Famer Dan Hampton has a great deal to apologize for this week. During a broadcast of an NFL game between the Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints, Hampton thought it would be funny to bring up that little thing called Hurricane Katrina. Making reference to the fact that the Vikings needed to show up with their A-game, Hampton said, "The Vikings need to go down there and hit that town like Katrina."
Bad move buddy, bad move.
There isn't much to say about Dan Hampton other than the obvious. It didn't take him long to realize that it might be inappropriate to make jokes about an event that led to the death and displacement of tens of thousands of people. Hurricane Katrina affected real lives in a very real way, and Hampton needs to understand that. Additionally, invoking Katrina into the fantasy world of professional football is only productive to the extent that the success of the Saints has helped to heal the hearts of New Orleans residents who've lost everything. So, if you can't bring Hurricane Katrina up in a positive and uplifting way, please don't bring it up as a joke.


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