In the latest example of why things from the internet should stay on the internet, the Monday Night Football crew decided to talk about their latest online discovery: the Capt. Andrew Luck twitter account. For those unfamiliar, the parody account features an avatar of Luck’s face over a Civil War general and tweets things relevant to the quarterback’s season in the form of an old-timey letter.
As Joe Tessitore, Jason Witten and Booger McFarland laugh about the account, ESPN’s production team decided to use this topic to segue into a Civil War-themed graphic about how the quarterback’s protection has improved over his career with the Colts. For some reason, the designers really wanted to emphasize the time period and had two linemen protecting Luck dressed in grey Confederate Army jackets before two “reinforcement” linemen, dressed in blue Union Army jackets, joined them on the same line. Luck, for his part, was dressed as a Union general. Safe to say this wasn’t a great start.
But things began to unravel even further with the sound. Playing in the background of the graphic on a fife and drum was “Dixie” or “I Wish I Was In Dixie,” a song first used in blackface minstrelsy, but better known as a de facto national anthem of the Confederate States of America.
Ignoring the historically inaccurate use of that song—Indiana was in fact a Union state—it’s just generally tone-deaf to use a Confederate song in any context outside of educational purposes. The Confederacy was bad, and it’s a bit exhausting that this still has to be explained.