• Mcalester News-Capital Editorial Board: OPINION: OUR VIEW: Racism is always wrong

• Mcalester News-Capital Editorial Board, McAlester News-Capital, Okla.
·2 min read

Mar. 16—Racism still exists. But an Oklahoma high school girls basketball team proved racism will always be on the losing side.

An announcer on the NFHS Network livestream of a girls basketball state tournament game disparaged members of the Norman High School team who knelt during the National Anthem to protest racial injustice.

Then he called them the N-word.

"They're kneeling? F***** n*****," he said.

The announcer's comments are the definition of racism:

—noun: prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against a person or people on the basis of their membership in a particular racial or ethnic group, typically one that is a minority or marginalized.

We applaud the Norman High basketball team for using their Constitutional right to peacefully protest racial injustice.

The team showed strength and perseverance to go on and win a state championship in the face of bigotry — and showed why hate and racism will always be on the losing side of history.

Contracted announcer Matt Rowan later released a statement that he made the racist comments, blaming it in part on his type 1 diabetes.

But racism isn't a symptom of diabetes.

Racism is at the foundation of the historic, systemic oppression of Black and non-white people in America — and it still exists all around us, whether or not we choose to acknowledge it.

Some Dixie flags can still be seen flying at full mast in and around Pittsburg County, like other communities across the South and the nation.

That's not to say that everyone is racist — but it's still a persistent problem nationwide in politics, education, law enforcement, media, business, everywhere.

That's why people kneel during the anthem.

We condemn racism and we encourage everyone to acknowledge its existence so we can further work toward equality.

McAlester News-Capital Editorial Board