If working for the NFL is slavery, then I’m a slave’s slave

March 17, 2011 |

On Tuesday, Vikings’ RB Adrian Peterson said working for the NFL is like modern-day slavery. There are many ways I could rip Mr. Peterson apart, but I’ll stick with one, maybe two.

First, no one is making Peterson work for the NFL and take their millions of dollars to play a boy’s game. Slaves never had a choice between working in the fields or being a free citizen and owning their own property. If they did, there wouldn’t have been slavery in the first place. Then Peterson said regular people get the same treatment the players get from the NFL.

“It’s modern-day slavery, you know?” Peterson said. “People kind of laugh at that, but there are people working at regular jobs who get treated the same way, too. With all the money . . . the owners are trying to get a different percentage, and bring in more money.”

Yes, Mr. Peterson, regular people may get treated the same way. But there’s a difference: “regular” people don’t make millions of dollars each year, so does that make regular people a slave’s slave? Hell, I know plenty of “regular” people who would quickly switch places with Peterson and get treated badly by the NFL if it means getting paid more than they would make in a lifetime. If that’s slavery then please sign me up.

Second, how much of an idiot can one person be to compare working for the NFL to a horrible thing like slavery? If slaves messed up, they were beaten and whipped badly. If a players hit each other the wrong way, they get a fine that doesn’t even put a dent in their wallet. If slaves tried to form a union, much less rebel against their masters, they had a body part cut off or were killed. Which makes Peterson’s comparison not only idiotic, but embarrassing to African-Americans, descendants of slaves who saw slavery as an abomination to this country. But there’s a different abomination to the US now: it’s overpaid and spoiled NFL players (and owners) who don’t know how to split 9 billion dollars. Here’s a suggestion, give it away to countries who could use the money, like Japan.

Maybe both sides will start to feel effects of no football once September comes and no money rolls in. However until that time comes, NFL players and owners need to keep their mouths shut in public and handle their business behind closed doors.