Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the five Rams players who entered Sunday’s games with their hands in the air (a visual reference to the Ferguson-related protests) did nothing wrong, but adds:
I’ll challenge Rams players to do more. While I support the Rams players’ right to go with the “Hands Up” symbolism, I’d like to see them do something more meaningful by getting involved on the ground in Ferguson.
Players don’t have much free time during the season, but it’s not as if this Ferguson unrest — and the underlying reasons for it — are restricted by the calendar. There’s no clock on this movement; time will not expire. When the Rams’ season is over, the citizens of Ferguson will still be there, working to cope with their real-time problems and solve the more long-term, deep-rooted issues.
It would be great to see the five Rams (and teammates) engage peaceful protesters, the business owners, community leaders, and the younger, impressionable kids. I’d be impressed if the Rams used their visible platform to condemn the violence and the looting that captured so much of the media attention, thereby overshadowing the civil, more constructive form of protest.
The five Rams chose to enter the arena, literally and figuratively, by making a hands-up gesture after they walked through the team tunnel before the game. But hands-on action would be a more powerful and effective way to show support for Ferguson.