ESPN commentator suspended over racist remarks about Robert Griffin
They call him "RG3" - a rookie quarterback for the Washington Redskins who has become a phenomenon due to his stellar play.
The fact that he's black isn't very important - unless you're a black racist who questions Griffin's authenticity.
Rob Parker of ESPN did just that, mentioning that Griffin has a white fiancee as well as rumors that he leans Republican in his political choices.
Those musings got the commentator suspended by the network:
"He's black, he kind of does his thing, but he's not really down with the cause; he's not one of us," Parker said yesterday. "He's kind of black, but he's not really the kind of guy you want to hang out with cause he's off to something else."
During the segment, Parker pointed out Griffin's engagement to his white fiancée, Rebecca Liddicoat. Parker went on to speculate that the quarterback might be a Republican, but that Griffin's braids added to the "authenticity" of being black.
"I want to find out about him," Parker said about the rookie quarterback. "I don't know because I keep hearing these things. We all know he has a white fiancée. Then there was all this talk about him being a Republican, which there's no information at all. I'm just trying to dig deeper into why he has an issue."
The Parker controversy came about after Griffin responded to a question in a press conference on Wednesday after practice about Martin Luther King, Jr.
"For me, you don't ever want to be defined by the color of your skin," Griffin told reporters on Wednesday. "You want to be defined by your work ethic, the person that you are, your character, your personality. That's what I've tried to go out and do.
"I am an African-American in America. That will never change. But I don't have to be defined by that."
Griffin sounds logical and reasonable on race - just like a Republican.Parker can stew all he wants to about RG3's refusal to play racial politics. But most successful African Americans in America think like he does, not like Parker.