Jason Whitlock: “Include football in your prayers for Damar Hamlin, the Buffalo Bills player who collapsed from a heart attack during Monday Night Football. Everyone desperately wants the 24-year-old safety to recover— the same is not true for the sport that enriches him and countless other young men. The woke have programmed us to hate football, and to see it as a source of toxic masculinity, unnecessary health risk, and a relic of a dying patriarchy. Football has been demonized. We watch it while holding our breath believing that every hit leads to life-altering head trauma. The 2022 season could very well be remembered as the year the NFL died in Cincinnati. The Queen City is where Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa crumpled, fingers contorted, and lost consciousness after a routine sack during a Thursday Night Football game. Three months later another seemingly routine hit precipitated Hamlin's collapse, loss of consciousness, and rushed to a local hospital. The NFL delights in its ability to attract massive audiences to its stand-alone games. The league's pervasiveness and overexposure work against it when dramatic injuries occur. Games intended to entertain and distract turn into somber visitations and funerals. Broadcasters inadvertently transform into mourners, eulogists, and priests. Corporate media's addiction to Twitter compels a competition of last rites and emotion. The enemies of football are the real winners. The feminists and leftists pushing the anti-football propaganda campaign have even seduced the sports participants. Inside an American culture that rewards victimhood, current and former NFL players cast themselves as martyrs of a game that makes them millionaires. In reaction to Hamlin's on-field tragedy, former Pittsburgh Steeler, turned ESPN broadcaster Ryan Clark proclaimed that Hamlin's cardiac arrest was a byproduct of football. I get that Ryan Clark is reacting in the moment just hours after Damar Hamlin is taken to a hospital in Cincinnati, he's in critical condition, I get it, but Scott Van Pelt, or someone at ESPN needs to force some reality on Ryan Clark. They shouldn't just let these football players emote on air. I played football all the way through college. I have many close friends who had long careers in the NFL. I've never heard anyone say they're 'ready to die' for football. No one that I know looks at football as a life and death situation. Injuries are always a possibility, no one thinks of death. In 1971, Chuck Hughes, a 28-year-old Detroit Lions receiver died during the game. It was later revealed he suffered blood clots. Hughes is the only NFL player to die during the game, THE ONLY NFL PLAYER TO DIE DURING A GAME. It happened 50 years ago. I was unaware of Hughes’s death, there was no 24-hour sports news network in 1971. Monday Night Football was just a year old. As a news story Hughes’ death wasn't treated as a national tragedy, it was something bad that happened. Bad things happen in all activities. In 1990, college basketball star Hank Gathers collapsed and died while playing hoops. In 1993, Boston Celtics forward Reggie Lewis collapsed and died during a practice. In 1920, a Yankees pitcher struck the head of Cleveland's Ray Chapman with a pitch. Chapman died 12 hours later. I was at the race in 2001 when Dale Earnhardt slammed the wall and died. I knew the boxer Randie Carver. I was at the fight that killed him and visited his family at the hospital the day he was pronounced dead in 1999. My point is that football is not unique. Men and women take risks playing sports, riding the subway, or swimming in a pool or the ocean; there's no reason to blame football for what happened to Damar Hamlin. It's nearly impossible to have measured nuanced conversations in the media today. Everything said on ESPN is crafted in a way to please Twitter. It's all performative emotion and outrage. It's all dishonest and inauthentic… Police officers put their lives on the line, so do members of the military. Football players play a game. Boxers and mixed martial artists take more risks than football players… Let's ask God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit to intervene on behalf of Damar Hamlin, he's in critical condition. Do the same for football, its public perception is on life support too.” (Full Segment Above)
Watch Jason Whitlock of ‘Fearless’ call out ESPN for their coverage of the Damar Hamlin incident on Monday Night Football, as Whitlock says it turned into a 'performative' and ‘dishonest’ attack on the sport of football in the ensuing hours.
Check out the video above as Whitlock details why he thinks the ‘enemies of football’ were the biggest winners of a NFL 2022 season that was lowlighted by the jarring injuries of Hamlin and Tua Tagovailoa, adding that he thinks football was further demonized by 'feminists and leftists' pushing anti-football propaganda.