As some of you sports gurus know, the Dallas cowboys have been struggling this year; especially after Dak Prescott suffered a season ending injury.
Mike McCarthy, the coach, decided to motivate his players before their game against the Minnesota Vikings, by smashing watermelons to get his team fired up. Apparently, it worked as the team won allegedly. I only know about this because a friend told me about it as I don't even watch sports anymore nor do I intend to again but that's besides the point. Anyways, former NFL player turned sports analyst, and a bonafide hall of famer to boot, Shannon Sharpe, claimed what Mike McCarthy did was insensitive and racist. Claiming watermelons have certain connotations as they relate to black people like himself. In other words, he implies it was a bit of a racist act to smash a watermelon to motivate his players. What are your thoughts on this? Is smashing watermelons a racist act? Or not? And if you do think it's a racist act then can you please explain it to me as I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around that. Don't get me wrong, I'm fully aware of the stereotype of black people being into fried chicken and watermelons the same way everyone expects all Asians to be into martial arts. Or when people claim all Asians look alike when they don't but that's besides the point.
However I just don't get how smashing watermelons is a racist act so is there something I'm missing here? Please tell me if you can explain it to me as I don't see it being a racist act. Granted I think smashing watermelons is stupid because it's a waste of food honestly but I don't think much of it beyond that.
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Edit:. Also sorry if this thread itself comes off as a bit racist for merely asking the question as I'm curious to know exactly why smashing watermelons is a racist act so someone can explain it to me so I can understand.
I have always thought of watermelons as being green. With a red interior just as black, white, red, yellow and brown people all have. Never thought of vegetables as being racist.
Given that, it becomes difficult to find a real connection between the races of watermelon and black humans. They are different colors; while there may be racism between them (just as between whites and blacks), no one could reasonably consider smashing watermelons to be a racist act against blacks.
Unless one claims that blacks love watermelons so much that smashing them is an act causing harm to blacks? More than to the watermelons?
I read a little about this story and it well appears by the statement Shannon Sharpe offered about the watermelon smashing that he feels it's was a racist insult. --- "Hell no, I don’t think it’s fun,” Sharpe said. “Listen, dear white America, anytime you have Black people in your presence, watermelon has a negative connotation. Let it go. Let it go. "
So, perhaps we should ban watermelons and protest stores that sell them. In the case of a bunch of football players smashing watermelons, I don't see it as a racist act. It sounds like the football players participated and had a bit of fun. I have not read anything about any of the players bringing up any racist accusations about the incident.
However, I think in some unfortunate incidences the word watermelon can be applied and used to a sentence that denotes racism. But the fruit in all its glory, I don't think it should be offensive to anyone.
Watermelons has been used as a form of racial slur, the campaign of the late Harold Washington for the office of Mayor of Chicago in 1983 comes to mind. His opponents used many ugly racist caricatures to attack the man. The "watermelon" thing was part of it.
Breaking and smashing watermelons is not associated with racism in of itself.
We agree as I stated unfortunately the word itself is used by some to denote a racial slur. I did a bit further looking into the story, it appeared black players did participate and were smashing watermelons with other black players names on them. I really think all that were participating did not think it racial. Did the coach? Not so sure about his reasons for even coming up with the idea.
And yes I have heard the watermelon used by racists. Unfortunately, they are still a part of our society.
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