How Loretta Lynch ended up, and the NFL, on the wrong side of history

In 2016, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch, the first black woman to hold the position, gave a speech on community-police relations at...



In 2016, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch, the first black woman to hold the position, gave a speech on community-police relations at the White House Historically Black Colleges and Universities Week Conference. It was the year when The accounta A Guardian study that tracked police killings in the US found that black men aged 15-34 were nine times more likely to be killed by law enforcement than other Americans and that they were killed about four times more than young white men. It was about three years into the Black Lives Movement, and Lynch was giving a sermon on the work of the civil rights movement to the diaspora of brownfaces in the audience that day.

She sang the praises of the four young black men from North Carolina A&T who, in 1960, walked into a Woolworth in Greensboro, North Carolina, and demanded to be served like any other customer. She spoke of the perseverance and courage of the Greensboro Four, as history would call them. She spoke of the stool where one of them had sat.

“This stool has special meaning to me, not just because I was born in Greensboro the year before the Woolworth sit-in, and not just because my father allowed student activists to meet in the basement. of his church,” she said. “And not just because this bold act of civil disobedience changed the very neighborhoods and school systems in which I grew up. What this stool means to me is the ability of the ordinary individual to strike a blow. for righteousness.”

Three years after giving that speech, Lynch joined the law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, where she would become a partner in the Washington, DC office. And wheren Wednesday, it was announced that the NFL had called on Lynch and its partners to defend the league and its teams against allegations of racism of former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores.

The collective sigh of the ancestors could be heard on Black Twitter.

The NFL has always been a bastion of white supremacy that preserves racial privilege and insulates itself from real consequences. NFL owners are responsible only to themselves. The owners pay the commissioner of the NFL. As such, NFL owners ignored black ownership demands; they ignored qualified black men seeking to become head coaches; they even ignored black protests. As old kanye might have said, the NFL doesn’t care about black people.

The Flores lawsuit alleges that not only was he wrongfully fired, but he received what amounted to sham interviews with the New York Giants and Denver Broncos simply because the NFL had to meet a formal obligation. You see, the NFL was so racist that it had to establish what is called the Rooney Rule, named after Dan Rooney, a former Pittsburgh Steelers owner who was also in charge of the diversity committee. The Rooney rule emerged in 2003 after two black head coaches, Tony Dungy of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Dennis Green of the Minnesota Vikings, were fired at the end of 2002. Dungy’s Bucs had a winning record when they was let go, and Green’s Vikings had their first losing season in 10 years of leadership when he received his walking papers. Critics saw Dungy and Green’s firings as racially motivated. The NFL therefore implemented the Rooney Rule to appease black assistant coaches seeking higher-level positions. It was a fail-safe affirmative action that requires NFL owners to interview minority candidates for high-ranking positions — but it doesn’t say they have to hire them. So that’s precisely what the owners do: they interview black candidates with no intention of giving them the job.

It’s a masquerade, all that. The NFL has no problem paying black men to risk bodily harm, but they don’t want them in the ownership boxes or the head coaching positions, which – and that’s the part quiet that is never said above a whisper – would mean interacting on a more personal level. Head coaches and owners often have a friendly relationship. They spend time at each other’s house; they review player salaries and possible acquisitions. They talk about the needs of the team and spend a lot of time together during the offseason. This could explain why before Flores’ trial, the NFL had only one active black head coach, Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers. After Flores filed the lawsuit, Lovie Smith was hired to coach the Houston Texans, and Mike McDaniel, who identifies as multiracial, is now the Miami Dolphins’ new coach.

The fact is, the NFL has a huge race problem, and it’s heartbreaking to see the first black female attorney general now arguing on the wrong side of history. Lynch had been a civil rights activist until 2019, when she joined her current law firm. Then things changed. Since then, she has become the go-to lawyer defending big business against allegations of racism.

One can’t help but wonder: if the lunch counter sit-in were to take place in 2022, would Lynch be defending Woolworth’s?

And it’s amazing to see the reversal of fate, to see this once courageous civil rights defender become the person big business looks for when accused of racism. We literally watch the hero become the villain in real time.

In September 2020 ― when McDonald’s was facing several lawsuits black franchisees claiming the company limited the locations they could purchase and often directed them to all-black, low-income neighborhoods — the golden arches hired Loretta Lynch to defend them.

In 2021 — when black media mogul Byron Allen sued McDonald’s for $10 billion, alleging the company discriminated against black-owned media companies — it was Lynch again who was tasked with defending the media giant. fast food. According to Allen’s TrialMcDonald’s spends $1.6 billion a year on TV ads and “spends less than about $5 million each year on African-American-owned media, and it has declined to advertise on Entertainment Studios networks. or The Weather Channel since Allen acquired the network in 2018.”

While that $5 million might seem like a lot of money, it’s only 0.3% of McDonald’s annual television advertising budget spent with African American-owned media.

“It’s about the economic inclusion of African-American-owned businesses in the American economy,” Allen told Marc Lamont Hill on “Black News Tonight.”McDonald’s takes billions from African American consumers and gives next to nothing in return. The biggest trade deficit in America is the trade deficit between white corporate America and black America, and McDonald’s is guilty of perpetuating this disparity. Economic exclusion must end immediately.

It’s important to note that Bryon Allen is loaded with money. If there’s one person who doesn’t suffer for money, it’s Byron Allen. Presumably, then, money isn’t the reason for Allen’s fight; the story is.

Allen told Hill that a conversation with Dr. Martin Luther King’s widow, Coretta Scott King, prompted his journey to take on big business that loves black money but not black burden.

“She said, ‘Listen, Byron, as black people we’ve had four major challenges in this country. Number one: end slavery. Number two: end Jim Crow. Number three: Obtain civil rights. “And then she choked up,” Allen said. “And she said, ‘And number four, the real reason they killed my Martin: To achieve economic inclusion. “”

Allen continued: “She said, ‘You know, Byron, they didn’t kill Martin during the speech. I have a dream. They killed my Martin for the speech he gave at Stanford University, The other America. In that speech, he talked about the existence of two Americas, and one America having access to education and economic inclusion, and the other America not. And two Americas will not survive.

It’s shocking to see this juxtaposition of Allen and Coretta Scott King on one side of the fight and Lynch on the other, but I’ve given up trying to sort out what motivates people to oppose the fight for equality. Maybe it’s money. (It’s still money.) But it seems easy, especially since Lynch wasn’t suffering financially. She was the highest police authority in the country at one time. She could have landed anywhere, done anything. Instead, the woman who once fought for civil rights has become someone trying to undo years of civil rights work for a paycheck.

My dad used to say there was never a shortage of black people willing to undo the work of those who helped them get there. Lynch must know that she’s become the blackface called in for cases like these. And I don’t know how she arranges that in herself.



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Newsrust - US Top News: How Loretta Lynch ended up, and the NFL, on the wrong side of history
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