The Miami Heat, the Hoodies and Trayvon Martin: Not a Public Relations Statement
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Some people don't get it.
Sirius XM radio personality Dan Graca sure doesn't.
Graca's opinion regarding Trayvon Martin and the Miami Heat wearing their hoodies in a group picture was full of malice and ill will.
The Heat should be commended as they were both united and empathetic in a statement photo taken because this tragic story of a deceased youngster has captured the nation.
Graca isn't an idiot talking at the office water cooler; he is a radio personality with listeners.
How long he's been in the business and if the average listener has ever known of him before is another question, but let's stay on the topic.
Race relations have changed drastically in this nation not only due to Barack Obama being president, but largely due to the culture of hip-hop as an art form and the world of sports and entertainment continuously bringing common people together.
To suggest the Miami Heat would take a group picture with narcissistic and minute intentions of "hey look at me" is a slap in the face to the Martin family, since the Heat are recognizable figures and with all certainty are being looked at.
The mindset and acceptance of people toward race has changed greatly with sports, music and television being the leaders in transcending racial views in America. To date, though, there is still a hint of racism in many social encounters and some experience this more than others.
Was Dan Graca disrespectful to the family of Trayvon Martin for what he said?
There's no mystery that while growing up, many players on the Heat have probably dealt with the same stereotypes and judgments as Trayvon and can relate.
There shouldn't be any problem with that and either Graca hasn't experienced any form of judgment on his character, or is just too simple to understand what may have occurred to him at some point during his lifetime due to his own look or dare it be said, verbiage.
The excerpt from his Sirius XM show sounds more like a "look at me" cry from Graca for listeners as his reasoning in attacking the Miami Heat doesn't have a valid point.
The only point made by Graca throughout the rant is strangely about race. Graca's only gripe is that the caucasian Mike Miller isn't in the picture and Graca personally gave his reasoning for the absence of Miller.
As odd as it may sound, Graca seems to have forgotten that LeBron James is one of the most internationally recognized athletes with Dwyane Wade keeping the same company.
Paired together with Chris Bosh and the Miami Heat, they are probably the most popular team in the NBA—and it'd be safe to bet dollars to doughnuts that they don't need the publicity in taking a photo like this.
As a radio personality and supposedly in-tune with the news, has Graca not seen or even heard about the numerous celebrities and no-name average Joes with hoodies on their Facebook and Twitter profiles?
Graca alone made this photo an issue about race for the Heat as opposed to what is truly was—an issue of empathy and support.
The two things we all need in life and what Graca probably needs the most at this time.
For the Heat, this wasn't a black and white issue. This was an issue about the hoodie and that no matter who wears it, black or white, the thoughts of warmth, fear, curiosity and comfort run deep.
For the Martin family, the hoodie is a show of support and unity in a tragedy that has put them in the national spotlight and the Heat players, like many of us, recognized this without the assistance of public relations.
Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Graca—and his public relations team is probably speaking with him right now.
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