New Orleans Saints tight end Benjamin Watson, whose Facebook post on the Ferguson riots went viral last week, appeared on CNN to discuss his feelings about the rioting and the Michael Brown shooting.
Watson spoke with CNN’s Brooke Baldwin on Friday and read parts of his emotional Facebook post during the interview. “Sometimes I feel like it’s us against them. Sometimes I feel like I’m just as prejudiced as the people I point fingers at and that’s not right,” he read. “How can I look at white skin and make assumptions and not want assumptions made about me? That’s not right.”
Watson moved on to the last paragraph of his Facebook post, which struck a cord with many of his Facebook fans. Brown told Baldwin he wanted to close the piece on a positive note because after working through his emotions he is encouraged and wanted to share that with others. Watson wrote:
I’M ENCOURAGED, because ultimately the problem is not a SKIN problem, it is a SIN problem. SIN is the reason we rebel against authority. SIN is the reason we abuse our authority. SIN is the reason we are racist, prejudiced and lie to cover for our own. SIN is the reason we riot, loot and burn. BUT I’M ENCOURAGED because God has provided a solution for sin through the his son Jesus and with it, a transformed heart and mind. One that’s capable of looking past the outward and seeing what’s truly important in every human being. The cure for the Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice and Eric Garner tragedies is not education or exposure. It’s the Gospel. So, finally, I’M ENCOURAGED because the Gospel gives mankind hope. [emphasis original]
“For whatever reason,” Watson said, “God kind of gave me the words to put on paper and it resonated with a lot of people but I think it’s really important that we take a step back sometimes and think about the other side before we make accusations and assumptions.”
If you watched the interview on the CNN website you would assume that it ended there, because that’s where CNN cut the online version of the interview. But there was more.
“It’s not the skin, the issue is sin,” Watson said. “And I firmly believe that the issue is that internally, we are flawed. Internally, we need salvation from our sin. Internally, our sin makes us prideful. It makes us judgemental. It makes us prejudiced, which leads to racism. It makes us lash out at people that don’t look like us. It makes us look past evidence to protect people that look like us. It makes us do all those things. It makes us lash out in anger. It makes us point fingers.”
“Alright…” Baldwin tried to interrupt.
Watson continued: “Our sin that’s in us makes us do those things and the only salvation for this sin is the gospel. The only way to really cure what’s on the inside is understanding that Jesus Christ died for our sins. And so for me, on a micro-level, it’s under –”
“Got it –” Baldwin again interrupted.
But this time Watson’s side of the split-screen was replaced by a green screen with wavy lines.
“Whup…just like that, we lost him,” Baldwin said pointing to her earpiece.
It seems like speaking the name “Jesus” or talking about the tenets of Christianity is the next best thing to having a superpower if you’re a guest on a liberal media outlet. You can disappear — Just. Like. That.