EDITORIAL: Jon Gruden shows NFL hasn’t changed

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(Daniel Hernandez | Viewpoints)

The NFL seems to have a problem dealing with social issues from racism, sexual and domestic abuse and homophobia.

These social issues range from Ray Rice and Chad Johnson’s domestic assaults, Deshaun Watson’s sexual assault allegations and even blackballing Colin Kaepernick for standing up for civil liberties.

Former Las Vegas Raiders football coach Jon Gruden’s emails from 2010 through 2018 in which he used sexist, homophobic and transphobic language were leaked amid the NFL’s investigation of the Washington Football Team’s sexual harassment allegations.

It was revealed that he had made comments to former team president Bruce Allen about the NFL Player’s Association (NFLPA) executive director DeMaurice Smith, referring to Smith saying, “Dumborris Smith has lips the size of Michelin tires.”

Gruden also made comments about NFL commissioner Roger Goodell that the Rams shouldn’t have been pressured to draft Michael Sam in 2014, who was the first openly gay player to be drafted in the NFL.

We believe that there is no room for people who feel and talk like that anywhere, especially in mainstream media.

Gruden has a massive responsibility as coach of one of the country’s most popular sports teams. His comments hurt many and reinforce the stereotypes people have about the football culture.

Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib, the league’s first openly gay active player, took a personal day following Gruden’s resignation.

It is understandable that he grew up and learned about the game when this way of thinking was acceptable, but as time progresses, so should we as human beings.

As a football coach, how could you expect men to follow and believe in you when you could have offended family or friends of players on your team, especially since most of the players in the league are Black.

The Raiders should have beaten Gruden to the punch and should have fired him before he resigned.

It made it seem like Raiders management would’ve kept him until the league forced their hand.

Gruden’s comments only amplify the problematic culture of the league. Management — from owners to GMs to coaches — needs to be held accountable.

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