Fox asks kids to reenact Richard Sherman interview

Is Fox's spoof of the cornerback's famous interview racist? VIDEO

Topics: Video, richard sherman, Children, Sports, Football, Seattle Seahawks, michael crabtree, Racism, fox sports,

Fox Sports has responded to Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman’s notorious post-game interview by reenacting it with children.

In the reenactment, children repeat Sherman’s outburst, in which he exclaimed, “I’m the best corner in the game!” and called out San Francisco 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree, saying, “Don’t you open your mouth about the best, or I’m gonna shut it for you real quick!”

Children acting like adults is a long-running comedic gag. But given that the rant prompted many viewers to call Sherman, who is black, a “thug,” a “monkey,” and worse, Fox’s reenactment with white kids is tainted by a disturbing racial undertone that’s hard to ignore. When Jimmy Kimmel spoofed Kanye West’s bizarre, braggadocious BBC interview in a similar fashion, for example, the rapper took offense. Gawker’s Cord Jefferson wrote about the racist undertones of using a black child to impersonate West:

The BBC interview was personal and honest and heartfelt, but it was also frenetic and boastful and rambling at times—perfect fodder for late night TV, in other words. Kimmel mocked it by reproducing the interview with a black kid in place of West. When West took offense, and let loose a series of furious tweets, Kimmel gave the smirk of a comedian who couldn’t see the big deal. You know the one; it climbs up only one side of the face, its meaning being: It was just a joke. That Kanye West didn’t take it as a joke isn’t really a surprise, even if we ignore the fact that he’s famously self-serious. Here he’d done an interview explaining how hurtful it is to have proved one’s ability and still be seen as inferior by rich white people, and a rich white person responded by infantilizing him.

…Kimmel may have just thought he was roasting another arrogant celebrity with his spoof; he almost certainly did, in fact. But looking at a black man’s assertion he’s been ignored because of his race and social class, and then recasting that man as a child for laughs, is always going to be an affront to many people of color in America, people who have long said, “something’s wrong here,” and been told: no, you’re just sensitive. You’re crazy. You’re acting like a baby.

You Might Also Like

In a society where there remains a racial double standard for celebrities, the reenactment obscures the line between remarking on an unexpected display of emotion and laughing at a black man. And it doesn’t help that sister company Fox News has a record for doing the latter.

Sherman addressed the interview on CNN, saying that he was still in competitive mode when he spoke to anchor Erin Andrews. “On the field, where we’re playing a very barbaric sport, you can do as you please,” he said. “If you catch me in a moment on the field when I’m still in that zone, when I’m still as competitive as I can be … then it’s not going to come out as articulate, as smart, as charismatic — because on the field I’m not all those things.”

In response to the racial slurs hurled at him, Sherman said, “For the people who did react that way and throw the racial slurs and things like that out there, it was really sad…I’m not out there beating on people or committing crimes or getting arrested or doing anything. I’m playing a football game at a high level. I got excited.”

Prachi Gupta

Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at pgupta@salon.com.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails
    Martyna Blaszczyk/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 1

    Pond de l'Archeveche - hundreds thousands of padlocks locked to a bridge by random couples, as a symbol of their eternal love. After another iconic Pont des Arts bridge was cleared of the padlocks in 2010 (as a safety measure), people started to place their love symbols on this one. Today both of the bridges are full of love locks again.

    Anders Andersson/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 2

    A bird's view of tulip fields near Voorhout in the Netherlands, photographed with a drone in April 2015.

    Aashit Desai/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 3

    Angalamman Festival is celebrated every year in a small town called Kaveripattinam in Tamil Nadu. Devotees, numbering in tens of thousands, converge in this town the day after Maha Shivratri to worship the deity Angalamman, meaning 'The Guardian God'. During the festival some of the worshippers paint their faces that personifies Goddess Kali. Other indulge in the ritual of piercing iron rods throughout their cheeks.

    Allan Gichigi/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 4

    Kit Mikai is a natural rock formation about 40m high found in Western Kenya. She goes up the rocks regularly to meditate. Kit Mikai, Kenya

    Chris Ludlow/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 5

    On a weekend trip to buffalo from Toronto we made a pit stop at Niagara Falls on the Canadian side. I took this shot with my nexus 5 smartphone. I was randomly shooting the falls themselves from different viewpoints when I happened to get a pretty lucky and interesting shot of this lone seagull on patrol over the falls. I didn't even realize I had captured it in the shot until I went back through the photos a few days later

    Jassen T./National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 6

    Incredibly beautiful and extremely remote. Koehn Lake, Mojave Desert, California. Aerial Image.

    Howard Singleton/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 7

    Lucky timing! The oxpecker was originally sitting on hippo's head. I could see the hippo was going into a huge yawn (threat display?) and the oxpecker had to vacate it's perch. When I snapped the pic, the oxpecker appeared on the verge of being inhaled and was perfectly positioned between the massive gaping jaws of the hippo. The oxpecker also appears to be screeching in terror and back-pedaling to avoid being a snack!

    Abrar Mohsin/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 8

    The Yetis of Nepal - The Aghoris as they are called are marked by colorful body paint and clothes

    Madeline Crowley/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 9

    Taken from a zodiac raft on a painfully cold, rainy day

    Ian Bird/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 10

    This wave is situated right near the CBD of Sydney. Some describe it as the most dangerous wave in Australia, due to it breaking on barnacle covered rocks only a few feet deep and only ten metres from the cliff face. If you fall off you could find yourself in a life and death situation. This photo was taken 300 feet directly above the wave from a helicopter, just as the surfer is pulling into the lip of the barrel.

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

Loading Comments...