Minnesota Vikings running back, Alexander Mattison, recently revealed that he was subjected to a barrage of racist messages following the team’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on September 14th. Here’s the full story.
The Racist Messages
Mattison took to Instagram to share two screenshots of the racist messages.
These messages, laden with racial slurs, even went so far as to instruct Mattison to take his own life.
In a heartfelt response, Mattison said to his followers to consider the weight of their words, and wrote, “I really could care less. But this s*** is unacceptable. … Really reflect on what you say and how it could affect someone. Under the helmet, I am a human.. a father.. a son. This is sick.”
The National Football League (NFL) and the Vikings organization swiftly rallied in support of Mattison, issuing statements condemning the abhorrent behavior.
The Vikings Denounced the Racist Comments
The Vikings expressed their profound dismay at the racial slurs directed towards Mattison, saying that there is no place for such hate in sports or society.
The NFL echoed this sentiment, categorically denouncing the racist comments and highlighting their complete incompatibility with the league’s values.
The league added, “We stand firmly with Alexander and remind fans to remember the humanity of all players and celebrate their contributions to the game we all love.”
Mattison’s agent, CJ LaBoy, took to social media to voice his support for his client, commending him for his bravery in sharing the hateful messages.
No Place for Such Behavior
“These types of messages hit these players’ inboxes all the time. This type of hate, vitriol has no place in our society, period. As disgusting as this is, I’m proud of Mattison for sharing,” he wrote.
In a formal statement, LaBoy emphasized the urgent need for institutions, including universities, stadiums, and teams, to enforce strict bans on people who engage in such language.
He declared that there is no place in the world for such behavior, and certainly not in the realm of sports, which should be a sanctuary of fair play and respect.
On the subsequent Saturday, Mattison took to Twitter, to express gratitude for the outpouring of love and support he and his family received during this challenging time.
Several social media users expressed their thoughts on the incident.
One Twitter user wrote, “No hateful comments are acceptable, no matter who that player is. I’m a Cowboys fan and am disgusted that people would say anything to players who are trying to do their job. They are human.”
Another user added, “What those people said is abhorrent. However, I wouldn’t read too much into it. This is a small fraction of losers doing this. Those are the same people who take the fun out of talking football. They’re so full of themselves and are the “experts” on all things NFL. They’re losers.”
A third user commented, “Wow, totally horrifying that people think like this, and even worse they send hate like this to other living people.”
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / DFree