Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 8/9/13
It has been evident in society for quite sometime; it is often covered up and even talked about behind closed doors.  The fact that racism still exists, even in the sports world. It seems that every time you turn on the TV, you see or hear an instance where something is thought of as “racially motivated”.Even in the sports world where men of different color go to battle with one another, there are still underlying issues with race.  Have we not moved passed these times?  Will we ever. Only time will tell and evidently we have a long way to go.For Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper, he was caught on camera at a concert using the “N” word.  I am a big fan of second chances and mix a party atmosphere with drinking and sometimes the best things do not come about.  For Cooper, he is consider to be a role model.I understand we shouldn’t label athletes, but the fact is it comes with the territory.  Cooper embarrassed himself, his family, and his teammates with his choice of words and in all this he seemed genuinely sorry for his actions and his words.  So, yes, he deserves a second chance and most will give him that; where he will forever wonder will be in the locker room.It is easy for the public to let things pass because of what they see on the field and the fact that they will not see Cooper each and every day.  Chances are over the course of weeks this will fade but the sting with teammates will remain and thus he will battle in his mind every time he goes in to the locker room wondering the perception of his fellow players.Being of a mixed race myself, I have heard many things said that have upset me and even made me fighting mad by those of other races and even those of the same race.  The fact is, we in society often set ourselves up for failure because we feel what is bad or inappropriate for one race to do to another is acceptable inside those of the same race.  In my opinion, disrespect in any form is unacceptable.  My kids do not say those things and we teach to treat others as you want to be treated, no matter race, color or creed.What we learned from Riley Cooper: Even those who have played alongside, worked alongside and fought alongside in the trenches of the gridiron with those of different race or creed still have the possibility of allowing inappropriate comments to be said.  The question is can he bounce back and bring himself back to be the teammate that other players want to be around?  I believe he can, but it will take some time and I don’t know if he has enough of that in Philadelphia.
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