I am of the age where everyone fought over Number 34 on the Little League diamond. I mean I fought for it in the way the smallest lion scraps at the backend of the antelope carcass (Fun Fact: youth baseball uniform numbers go up in size, I was number 5 a lot).
I also remember hearing about Kirby Puckett being an absolute creep and all-around skeezy dude, who at best was a sexual harasser and at worse, well, it was much worse.
Die a hero, or live long enough to become the villain, as some random, totally not made up person once said.
All of which brings me to, today, well actually… Saturday.
There is so much (and so little) to dissect here. Brent Kallman is the only one not wearing THE Black Lives Matter shirt designed by Warren Creavalle of the Philadelphia Union and he is the only one NOT taking a knee during the moment of silence that has happened at every match during the #MLSisBack Tournament. I’ve seen others, coaches only, not wearing the BLM shirt, but not players and not wearing some bullshit ‘End Racism” shirt. I definitely have not seen anyone not kneeling during the moment of silence (I’ve watched most of this godforsaken tournament as my bar tab at the Black Hart of Saint Paul can attest).
Brent Kallman is my favorite Loon. For the teams last ever NASL match I dressed up as Brent Kallman (it was a Halloween match). At the end of the night, I traded my beloved black wing on light grey kit with Kallman written in electrical tape on the back, for Kallman’s last ever NASL shirt (the dark blue with kinda light wing, it was a long sleeve though), I have worn that shirt many times since.
When we began MLS play and our beloved Brent was riding the pine, there was no advocate louder than I, yelling for Brent to get some fucking playing time. The next season, his ass was parked on the bench again, through no fault of his own, and I felt like the lone soldier punching at whatever lone soldiers punch at (God, the Devil, Heath, the Heath-devil), demanding he get time. He did and he shined once again.
Even last year, after he tested positive for a thing he shouldn’t have tested positive for, I was quick to rush to his defense, giving him the benefit of the doubt.
There is no more terrible feeling than realizing you’ve been played the fool. Well, there are many more terrible feelings, obviously, but when it comes to stupid games and the laundry we live and die for, being played the fool is probably the worst.
Well, Brent, you played me for the fool.
On its face, a shirt reading “End Racism” is great, who doesn’t want to end racism? Don’t answer that! But let us dig (not even that deep at all) into this. Brent is the only player not wearing the BLM shirt designed by the Black Players Coalition, an organization that counts his Center back partner as a member of their Board of Directors. A shirt that I have seen on literally every other player, multiple times! Furthermore, and honestly for me, the most egregious is his refusal to kneel during the moment of silence (see that picture up above), Schoenfeld is kneeling with a fist in the air, fuck, even Adrian “Tory through and through” Heath took a knee during this moment of silence.
Not kneeling and not wearing the shirt that literally everyone else is wearing can mean only one of two things. My favorite player is a dumb, stupid, idiot who is being fed garbage that the Trumpites are super rock hard for, or my favorite player is a person who legitimately believes that shit. Either way, I lose, we lose.
Black Lives Matter needs to be said, time and time again, because for hundreds of years they didn’t. Of course “All Lives Matter” and we should “End Racism” dipshits! The point is that we can’t “End Racism” until we recognize that Black. Lives. Matter. Until we truly understand what white privilege means and how we can break down the structural racism that is literally a skyscraper right now and then tear down that skyscraper of racism, we’ve done nothing.
This is now four days old. Brent himself, nor the team has provided any clarity on these statements, and don’t let anyone fool you these are fucking statements. As an ally of the BLM movement, I have to call out when my fellow white dudes are fucking up and Brent, you are fucking up right now!
Brent, if you or anyone for that matter, would like to email me I can be found at firstname.lastname@example.org, DM’s are also open here.