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Time to lay off of Tony Dungy
Robert Brewer Jan 28, 2023
KDT has a new sports reporter
Being a fan of the National Football League for many years, I am quite familiar with Pro Football Hall of Famer Tony Dungy.
After a brief professional playing career in the NFL during the late 1970s, Dungy’s true impact on the game occurred on the sidelines as a coach. He spent about 15 years as a defensive backs coach and defensive coordinator before landing his first head coaching job with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1996.
In Tampa, he quickly transformed the culture of a losing franchise into a winning one. Under Dungy’s leadership, the Buccaneers shed their reputation as a lovable loser into one of the most intimidating teams in the league.
In 2002, Dungy began his tenure as head coach of the Indianapolis Colts. The veteran coach maximized his time with the Colts by winning a Super Bowl with the club to cap off the 2006 NFL season. In the process, he became the first Black head coach to ever accomplish the feat.
In addition to his impressive coaching credentials, Dungy has also been a leader of men off the field as well. When former quarterback Michael Vick served time in prison for his involvement in an illegal dog fighting operation, Dungy was among the first public figures to lend emotional support to the tarnished football star. He was not interested in recruiting Vick for his athletic talents but rather wanted to serve as a mentor for a troubled young man who was hoping to eventually put his life back together.
With all the good Dungy has put out into the world, I was utterly disgusted when I saw an article written by Dave Zirin, a supposed journalist who writes for The Nation. Zirin concocted a crass hit piece about Dungy entitled “Tony Dungy is a Right-Wing Zealot and the NFL and NBC Don’t Care.”
In this utterly vapid piece, Zirin took issue with Dungy’s recent participation in the March For Life rally which was held in Washington D.C. last weekend. On Jan. 19, Zirin used the opportunity to bash Dungy and other pro-life advocates for their beliefs. An excerpt from Zirin read as follows:
“I’ve covered the March for Life in Washington, D.C., for years. It is a madhouse of right-wing gadflies, disinformation addicts, Qanon adherents, and, most disturbingly, class after class of teenage and tween-age children dragged there by teachers who abuse their authority in ways that would make Ron DeSantis smirk.”
To me, smearing large groups of people for their beliefs with sophomoric taunts does not constitute journalism. Zirin also couldn’t help but to let his political biases be known as he took a shot at Florida governor Ron DeSantis as well. Rather than a journalist, Zirin comes off as a spiteful political activist with a pen in his hand.
Dungy’s morality was also under attack in another passage from the piece:
“Dungy is held up as a deeply religious man and nearly a patron saint of the league. Dungy has used his devoutness as a cover for his anti-gay rhetoric and sharing platforms with unapologetic bigots,” the article reads.
Here, Zirin is insinuating that Dungy’s faith-based public image is somehow inauthentic and fake. Merely, the Hall of Fame football coach is using Christianity as a Trojan Horse in a grand, sinister plot to demonize and destroy people.
Meanwhile, there is nothing in Dungy’s background to suggest such an outrageous and ridiculous claim. Of all the people to ever work with Dungy in his decades in pro football, not one player, coach or colleague has said anything negative about the man publicly. Being that Dungy has worked with people of countless different backgrounds within the world of pro football for decades, don’t you think somebody would have noticed if he was a hateful bigot by now?
In addition to Zirin, many other mainstream media figures have joined in on the crusade to try and assassinate Dungy’s character. I find this practice typical of today’s mainstream corporatocracy that is openly hostile toward family values and religious conviction. In essence, Zirin and other media members are simply satiating their corporate masters by putting heat on Dungy.
Luckily, I believe most rational people in America are not buying what the corporatocracy is selling. Tony Dungy’s accomplishments and high moral character make him a great role model and example for young people, regardless of how triggered that makes Zirin and others feel.
Rather than desperately hurling attacks at Dungy and hoping one of them is correct, Zirin would have better luck trying to sell us some oceanfront property in Arizona.
Zirin as a journalist doesn’t show much character by “trying to impress the left with his writing skills.” He does owe Dungy an apology for “breach of conduct.” Zirin doesn’t seem to like the NFL for starters. Is that why this lefty is taking it out on Dungy?
The only questions that is legal for Zirin to question, in my opinion is- How many of the players can read and write even though some of them have college degrees. Isn’t it all about money? My suggestion – part of the NFL’s employee relations is to add “other skills” for those who can’t read, write, and teach social skills as part of their job – not just football.
In other words – POLISHING SKILLS – during and after they leave the sports field.