Wedding Cake for Erin and Vern
Wedding Cake for Erin and Vern

I know, we all want to put 2020 behind us. A decade from now, when we tell people we were engaged and married in 2020, eyebrows will raise. Why would you marry during the apocalypse? Love, that’s why. And an uncertain future. Who wants to fight zombies alone? But this union was highly improbable. Not even possible. Very unlikely. But it happened. The story is contained in three separate Facebook posts, below, in the order they went online. Hold on to your emotional hat.

Post #1

An open love letter to my Facebook Family about why on earth I’m getting…

I like sports. Many people do. I have stories from my youth, just like you do. Let’s converse about what many learned about sports in working-class communities as an analogy for our current state of presidential politics. Basically, many of us have seen this script before when battling for supremacy as kids playing pickup sports.


Kids play far more organized sports these days. Many of you won’t have experienced choosing your own squad to play pickup football, basketball or baseball. But in the old days, this is what we did — and how the drama flowed. …

Dear New Zealand: We need your help. We’ve got a squatter! I’ll tell you more about McDonald in a minute. But first, let me say that I miss you. I miss Canterbury, and Christchurch, and the Crusaders and the All Blacks. I want to give you an update on what’s been going on in the USA since I’ve been back.

I left New Zealand after 14 years of being a professor on the South Island at the University of Canterbury. I came back stateside for Barack Obama’s first inauguration in 2009. I stayed. I expected the USA to be filled…

Excerpt from the book, Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports, (Peter Lang Publishers)

As we approach the September start of the NFL I’ve been wondering how players will protest, if at all. I’m guessing yes. Both basketball and baseball have come back strong with Black Lives Matter patches, emblems and commercials. Given that this movement for equality started with football, we should expect to see protests of some sort. Here’s your review of what happened when Colin Kaepernick decided to shake up the world. And the internet.

Of course, there are always Haters: A review of Twitter commentary


I’d prefer not calling it White Privilege, because I’m Black — and I want it too. But funny, regardless of how much I “act” American, I still can’t seem to get enough college degrees (4, and counting) to purchase me some privilege. How did we get here?

I’m dropping an excerpt from my forthcoming book, “Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports” (Peter Lang Publishers) that lays out how Black Americans are told to behave like White people — like privilege is our birthright — so that we won’t be penalized in society (or after scoring a touchdown).

Basically, it’s…

Image for post
Image for post

Below is a discussion of social privilege — and life without it. Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports, is my forthcoming book where I work hard to lay out for folks the pathway that leads us to where we are in sport and society — and a way to social justice.

But first, the most salient topic on many people’s minds is not a lesson in American history, and not even executions in broad daylight by those sworn to protect, but rather the looting that media camera crews are collecting as they cover anguished citizen protests about inequality.


To read Part I of this series, click on the link below.

Part II

Here is the section of my forthcoming book on the specific matter of Native Team names and why both Black and White athletes have accepted this. Black Lives Matter lobbies for the voices of the unheard. We need to listen to Native voices.

On Native Team Names

Teams choose mascot names to promote their brand and to bring forth an image. Teams decide on a name that can celebrate their local heritage or customs or nearby animal — like Bears, and Pelicans and Dolphins and Trailblazers. The Forty Niners are…

Part I

I remember being taught about manifest destiny in school. The tone of the discussion was like a master story-teller sitting down to tell the kids how the world came to be, how America fought for freedom from tyranny, and how we would spread that love of freedom westward into new territory that could benefit from taming and civility. We would till the soil exploit the natural resources that were being wasted. We would build a middle-class country where everybody would have an equal chance at success and failure, and where we would defend just causes like democratic freedom…

The majority of Black men over the age of 40 have a cop-biography. This is our personal history of police altercations that have left mental scar tissue. We are not “victims;” we are the walking wounded.But not all of us are dead, like Rayshard Brooks, Walter Scott, Sandra Bland, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and the hundreds of others. We carry on and succeed despite the profiling, the running, the death.

Image for post
Image for post

We are triggered every time someone who looks like us is harmed by police and we catch glimpses on television. The same for many Black women who have been beaten…

Image for post
Image for post

I’ve had enough. All Black people have had enough. I imagine white people are tired of Black protests, too. Some choose to join us. Others look on and comment, “They are destroying their own neighborhoods. They are animals! No wonder cops kill them!” The unrest in our American streets is after more unjustifiable homicides by our police departments — George Floyd while driving in Minneapolis, Ahmaud Arbery while jogging in Georgia, and Breonna Taylor while sleeping in Louisville.

Dr. Vernon Andrews

Dr. Andrews is an Oakland native and New Zealand citizen. His forthcoming book is Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports (NY: Peter Lang).

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store