David Whitley Is A For-Real Racist

11.30.12 5 years ago 186 Comments

Lots of times we’ve poked fun at sportswriters or announcers for praising overmuch a white athlete’s heart, grit, gumption or whatever other term they invoke when they see a bit of themselves in an undersized white slot receiver who shows he actually belongs on the field with his more physically skilled, darker skinned peers. While that praise is likely informed by some amount of racial bias, in most cases it’s not actively racist. It’s important to make that distinction because Sporting News/Fanhouse columnist David Whitley is a for-real racist.

Once upon a time, Fanhouse was one of the most vital outlets in the sports blogosphere. The careers of many of the best-known and well-read sports bloggers today can be traced in some way to Fanhouse, including our own Matt Ufford. Of course, Fanhouse is now a husk of its former self, since years ago the decision was made there to scrap the bloggers in favor of veteran newspaper columnists who brought their outmoded 800-word columns and bloated salaries to a website desperate for an air of legitimacy. There’s no need to go into further detail about how and why that happened. Let’s just say that it has resulted in sh*t like this.

San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick is going to be a big-time NFL quarterback.

You might argue that he already is one, but then big-time is a vague enough word choice so as to be almost meaningless, so we’re off to a good start. Go on…

That must make the guys in San Quentin happy.

Hoo boy.

Approximately 98.7 percent of the inmates at California’s state prison have tattoos. I don’t know that as fact

Facts would only make the guys in San Quentin happy.

but I’ve watched enough “Lockup” to know it’s close to accurate.

Clearly we’re dealing with a man with deep understanding of sociology. Watching TV, he also learned only drug dealers carry cell phones and all black folks are like Tyler Perry.

I’m also pretty sure less than 1.3 percent of NFL quarterbacks have tattoos. There’s a reason for that.

Never mind that Whitley names three other starting NFL quarterbacks who have tattoos later in the column, rendering the bullshit percentage he just pulled out his ass to be wrong. Were it only fuzzy math he was guilty of.

NFL quarterback is the ultimate position of influence and responsibility. He is the CEO of a high-profile organization, and you don’t want your CEO to look like he just got paroled.

The quarterback position is indeed one of high profile and prestige. But he’s not anymore the CEO of his team than a widely read dipshit columnist is the CEO of whatever publication he dumps his brainfarts on.

Now along comes Kaepernick. Since taking over for Alex Smith two games ago, he has convinced everybody in the Bay area that he’s the second coming of Steve Young.

Smith is coming back from a concussion, ushering in the attendant QB controversy. But he is looking like Wally Pipp and Kaepernick is Lou Gehrig. All I can do is look in the mirror and sigh.

Because you just used one of the hoariest cliches in sportswriting? Understandable reaction.

Forgive me, but I suffer from tattoo-ism. I sport no ink, and I don’t want any. I know that attitude qualifies me for an AARP card, and I’ve tried to get with it.

No one gives a shit one way or another whether you yourself want tattoos. Your aversion to tattoos is perfectly fine until you use your public platform to liken anyone who has a tattoo to a prison inmate.

I realize tattoos are ways to pay homage to your religion, children and motorcycle gang.

Or, if you’re so inclined, your favorite sports team. Because lots of sports fans, the very people this is intended to scare, have fucking tattoos inspired by the team or players they love. Also: tattoos don’t necessarily have to pay homage to shit. Sometimes people just get ink because they think it looks good. People even get ironic tattoos, but I guess that’s a topic for another shitty piece.

I’m cool with LeBron James looking like an Etch A Sketch.

So long as he doesn’t come within 50 feet of your kids, am I right?

For dinosaurs like me, NFL quarterbacks were our little Dutch boys. The original hero stuck his finger in the dyke to save Holland.

I’m sorry for whatever warped aspect of your upbringing forced you to think that a bullshit folktale was a practice model for good behavior into your adulthood.

Another fun fact about Holland: their version of Santa Claus has little blackface slaves. No wonder this dude wants them saved.

Pro QBs were the last line of defense against the raging sea of ink.

A black tide trying to wash clear everything we hold dear!

When our kids said they wanted a tattoo, we could always point to the Manning brothers.

My guess is Archie would have made Peyton throw an extra 1,000 passes before dinner if he’d come home with a tattoo. The old man knew QBs are different.

Important to note that passing reps don’t remove tattoos.

Did Sammy Baugh, Johnny Unitas, Doug Williams or Joe Montana have arms covered in ink? Do Tom Brady, Drew Brees or Aaron Rodgers? The world will end when Tim Tebow shows up a tattoo parlor.

Because he’ll show up there with Jesus and they’ll both get Apocalypse tramp stamps on the small of their backs.

/notices how he tossed Doug Williams in there to cover his ass

It’s not just a white thing, I hope.


When the Panthers interviewed Cam Newton, owner Jerry Richardson popped the question.

“Should I call you darkie or dusky? Just kidding, I don’t care what you prefer.”

“Do you have any tattoos?” he asked.

“No, sir,” Newton said. “I don’t have any.”

“We want to keep it that way,” Richardson said.

He was OK with body art on other players, including the human canvas that is Jeremy Shockey. But Newton would be the face, arms and legs of the franchise. The boss didn’t want them covered in ink lines.

“Let’s keep it that way,” he told Newton.

“I can accept a black quarterback, just not an uppity one.”

I realize not all NFL quarterbacks are pristine. Ben Roethlisberger has a “COURAGE” tattoo on the right side of his upper body. Smith has one honoring his Serbian heritage. They can’t be seen when the players put on their uniforms.

But I thought all tattoos were bad? Now it’s just the ones we can easily see? David Stern approves of that reasoning.

Then there are Michael Vick and Terrelle Pryor. Neither exactly fit the CEO image, unless your CEO has done a stretch in Leavenworth or has gotten Ohio State on probation over free tattoos.

Or possibly raped two girls, like Roethlisberger has, but it’s okay, because his tattoos aren’t visible with his uniform on. That’s probably why he didn’t go to jail!

That’s what makes Kaepernick a threat to the stereotype. By all accounts, he’s polite, hard working, humble and has never been to prison. He sounds more like a Tebow who can throw.

He could be a mixed race Tebow, if only he were more Tebow-y, which is to say proselytizing and shitty.

Not to get too far ahead of ourselves here, but it’s not hard to envision him leading the 49ers into the playoffs. If not this season, in the years to come.

His ink-covered arms will one day raise the Vince Lombardi Trophy. Imagine the impact that could have.

/imagines 49ers fans being happy


For one thing, Jerry Richardson would clutch his chest in horror.

OH NOES! Or he would clutch his chest because he’s an old crusty fuckhead who stressed himself into a coronary hating on the blacks.

At the next Pro Bowl, you might spot Peyton by the pool with a Papa John’s logo on his ankle.

Yeah, you might actually see that at this coming Pro Bowl, regarding of what Kaepernick does.

I still think tattoo removal is going to be huge industry in the coming years. But for now, I might as well accept that Holland is probably doomed.

If you can’t draw the tattoo line at NFL quarterback, you can’t draw them anywhere.

That’s the thing. When you’re a terrible columnist paid ridiculous sums, you can draw arbitrary meaningless lines wherever you please, even if the only basis for them is your own small prejudices. That’s what so great about media privilege. Not only can you do these horrible things, but people have to watch you do them.

Oh, as much as I’d like to be the one to tear this stupid column a new asshole, there’s nothing I can write that could be more damning than AOL basically disavowing itself of this piece. Below, there’s a screenshot of the column from yesterday, then one from today, the latter with a disclaimer that Whitley’s shithead opinions don’t reflect those of his employer. Or anyone who doesn’t rely solely on MSNBC to explain the world to them. Does that have anything to do with the outrage that sprang from social media yesterday when people first got a look at this terrible piece? HARD TO SAY!

Around The Web