Pop Rocks: The Five Most Racist-Inducing Moments of Super Bowl XLVIII
The Super Bowl is a strange spectacle. At its core is the game, played between the NFL's elite teams in a winner-take-all match for the title. But the circus that has grown up around the world's most watched sporting event rivals anything Barnum and or Bailey could have dreamed up. From the hours-long pregame show complete with bands and actors hocking movies (I'm looking at you, Costner) to the extended halftime, the commercials and the post game analysis paralysis, it barely even resembles a football game except when guys in pads are hitting one another.
Richard Sherman was hurt, but some fans called it karma.
With the increased visibility, social media goes crazy. And when even the slightest controversy -- real or imagined -- rears its head, you can bet the denizens of Twitter will be over it like white on rice. In particular, those with jingoist or racially biased tendencies (some not just tendencies) come out of the woodwork. During Sunday's Super Bowl, there were five moments that seemed particularly race baiting even if they weren't in reality.
5. Bruno Mars
No surprise here. When Mars, a native of Hawaii, took the stage and ripped it up with his band, it was predicable that there would be racist tweets hurled at the pop star. But, when the Chili Peppers joined him, it got worse. Fans of the RHCP began clamoring for more of their favorites and less of Mars. Unfortunately, many of those online responses turned into name calling and Mars's skin color was the primary target.
4. Russell Wilson Reverse Racism
Here's one I wasn't expecting. When the Seahawks did win, there were quite a significant number of tweets referring to their quarterback as an Uncle Tom, though they chose far more colorful language than I. This seemed to be fueled, at least in part, by those who felt that Wilson "wasn't black enough," especially when compared to his teammate, Richard Sherman, who was blasted just two weeks earlier for his postgame tirade.