If you read the “Mission Statement” on Creighton University’s website, it’s easy to see that it serves as propaganda, falsely claiming that the university is a place that’s “dedicated to the pursuit of truth in all its forms and is guided by the living tradition of the Catholic Church.”
Well, here’s some truth: That mission statement is a lie. Unless the school is impressed with the “behind closed doors” slap on the wrist that they’re about to give Greg McDermott for impersonating a slave master in 2021.
“Guys, we got to stick together. We need both feet in. I need everybody to stay on the plantation. I can’t have anybody leave the plantation.”
Be clear, those are the words of a man that thinks he owns his players, especially the Black ones. But as bad as this is, or the fact that Terrence Rencher – the lone Black assistant coach on McDermott’ staff – had to “tolerate” this mess and make a statement about what happened, is the lackluster response from the school that’s “dedicated to the pursuit of truth in all its forms and is guided by the living tradition of the Catholic Church.”
“As this is a personal matter, any disciplinary action will remain confidential,” the school said in a statement.
While being prejudiced or participating in racism are indeed personal matters, McDermott isn’t a private citizen. He’s one of the school’s highest-paid employees and runs the most profitable athletic program on campus. This can’t be a private and personal matter, given that McDermott is the one that made this public by “apologizing” for it on Twitter.
Since the private incident was made public by the guilty party, then the punishment for the crime should also be made public. But it won’t because Creighton isn’t going to reprimand McDermott in a way that will be anything close to satisfactory, as anything less than him being suspended is unacceptable, as he should be fired.
Last summer, I wrote about how the sports world and America would eventually stop caring about Black lives mattering. I knew it would be impossible for them to fake it for longer than a few months. By October, we were wondering how Wichita State still hadn’t fired head basketball coach Gregg Marshall after allegations that he punched a player, body-slammed another, and made fun of a third athlete’s Native American heritage. A month later, Marshall resigned but was still able to collect a settlement of $7.75 million to be paid over the next six years. And in January, ESPN writer Jackie MacMullan revealed to us that she once told Kyrie Irving that he and the overwhelmingly Black players in the NBA were all someone’s “property,” and nothing happened to her. And she still hasn’t apologized.
This is the society we live in. One where incidents like this are tolerated, and when they become public knowledge, institutions of higher learning choose to cowardly handle them in private.
In the third stanza of Creighton’s mission statement, it says, “As Jesuit, Creighton participates in the tradition of the Society of Jesus, which provides an integrating vision of the world that arises out of a knowledge and love of Jesus Christ.”
Jesus Christ was a Black man. So I guess Greg McDermott and Creighton would want him to stay on the plantation, too.