There was once a time when the first thing I read every single Monday morning of the National Football League season was Peter King’s Monday Morning Quarterback. MMQB was the first and foremost piece for pro football fans on the si.com website. It became so popular that King has done what ESPN’s Bill Simmons did with Grantland and has made MMQB its’ own entity.
King is one of the preeminent NFL writers and one of its most senior. While he’ll never hold a candle to the great Paul Zimmerman, King is well read and well researched. The problem I have come to find with King over the last several years is that he has become a New England Patriots’ homer and shill for the commissioner Roger Goodell.
King is a denier of Spygate and instead of accepting that it was much more than what the league made it out to be, he went along with them. In turn, he lost a lot of fans along the way.
His writing during that time has also become political in its’ nature. He has used his forum to spew sermons on such things as gun control and his disdain for the former President Bush. I have my opinions as well on those subject but I know where and when to share them.
To be fair, King has done positive things too. He is a major supporter of the Pat Tillman Foundation and has called attention to the plight of former players battling diseases such as Lou Gehrig’s and the like. I think King means well in most of what he does but if the reports are true about his latest political stance then I have a problem.
According to the websites awfulannouncing.com and deadspin.com, King’s MMQB has informally announced they will not use the term ‘Redskins’ any longer when writing or reporting on them. While King himself has yet to say anything publicly, it sounds as if the foundation for this political stance has been laid.
As you and I know, King has the Constitutional right to say, write and do as he chooses on his website. He is also fully aware that there will be a backlash because he’s seen it before when commenting on other testy political topics.
Owner of the Washington Redskins Daniel Snyder has made it clear he has no plans to change the name despite very minor political pressure to do so. I say “minor” because there are not a lot of people calling for this name change. It’s being pushed by a small group who find the term offensive and you know what? It is in fact an offensive term for a Native American. Not the point however.
Someone said it’s no different than calling them the Washington N-words. I disagree with that because the original intent of Redskins did not start out as racially insensitive. The term was coined by the British who saw a tribe of Native Americans who had painted their faces red using tree roots and other materials. It has since been used
Maybe that doesn’t matter in all of this because it is still ‘offensive.’ Is it offensive because it details the skin color or is it offensive because of it’s’ relationship to Native Americans? If it’s the latter, then King should stop using the term ‘Chiefs’ because that also deals with Native Americans. In fact, King should also stop using the term ‘Patriots’ because I know descendants of Great Britain who live here and they are offended by that name.
King should also not use terms like ‘Celtics’ because that could upset someone who isn’t Irish. He should also avoid ‘Packers’ because that would offend vegetarians and he should also avoid the term ‘Saints’ because that might upset non-Catholics or perhaps some atheists.
Maybe what King should be doing is working with Native American tribes and the Redskins to bring together an understanding of the culture much in the way the Seminole tribe of Florida has done with Florida State University.
If Peter King is going to report on all 32 NFL teams then he should respect that portion of his job and save his political stances for another forum. Sports are the release for millions and the last thing they want to be inundated with is more political opinion.