Dateline: August 18, 2016 — Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
Highly regarded Brazilian authorities have reported that four Members of the United States Olympic Basketball Team are suspected of vandalizing a local business and government property, terrorizing several local businessmen, and lying to local law enforcement officers after a night of drunken partying. They then lied to Olympic officials and American journalists about the entire incident, falsely implicating a Brazilian resident and putting the entire safety of the entire Olympic games in Brazil under scrutiny in order to selfishly protect their criminal behavior.
Rashawn was last seen with his gang of friends on videotape drunk and laughing as they casually entered the Olympic campus. One would not know that just 30 minutes prior they had urinated all over the walls and broken a door and mirror of the business that Renaldo Guzman’s family had passed down for four generations.
Before anyone woke up the next morning, Rashawn left his fellow perpetrators and fled the country before Brazilian authorities could detain him. Luckily, two of his co-conspirators were caught and removed from the plane before take off and they are being held in Brazil for questioning.
When one delves into Rashawn’s past, his behavior isn’t completely surprising. Raised by a single mother (his parents are divorced), he has always been a hard to manage rebel, who has never followed the rules. He showed up to these games sporting blue hair and last year sported a multi-colored grill, popular in urban gangs and with rap stars. His coaches have said that he would never follow the rules and would skate board and ski even when asked not to do sports that could break bones. In other words, Rashawn has never respected authority. At one time, this could be viewed as simply a kid being a kid. Now, that Rashawn is a 32 year-old man, it must be viewed at a dangerous personality flaw that can put others at risk.
The modern Olympic tradition is one that dates back to 1896. We don’t just send athletes to compete, we send ambassadors of our country. The people that we send represent who we are to over 200 other nations. We have to be careful not to let thugs like Rashawn Langston and his gang wipe away our great American legacy of strong character and foundational values.
My intention is for Black people to love themselves and each other. It sounds somewhat silly, I guess; but oftentimes my people are overwhelmed with negative images, bad news, and stereotyped characters about us. I’d like to flip that script. I’d like to remind us, as often as I can, how incredible we are. Read more