Riley Cooper apologizes for racist rant
Less than a few hours after a video of Riley Cooper dropping a racist term during a Kenny Chesney concert spread across the internet like wildfire, the Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver has issued an apology.
“I am so ashamed and disgusted with myself,” Cooper wrote on Twitter. “I want to apologize. I have been offensive. I have apologized to my coach, (Eagles owner) Jeffrey Lurie, and (general manager) Howie Roseman and to my teammates. I owe an apology to the fans and to this community. I am so ashamed, but there are no excuses. What I did was wrong and I will accept the consequences.”
Most of the consequences will likely be immeasurable. Even if Cooper is “forgiven” by the organization and his teammates for his lapse in judgment, it will be incredibly difficult for people to believe he is not racist.
Players on successful NFL teams always talk about how their teammates are family and stress the importance of team chemistry. Whether Cooper was drinking or angry or whatever other excuse he might use, how can the Eagles — specifically his black teammates — view him as a brother? The comment will be hard to forget, regardless of how sincere his apology sounds when he speaks to the team.
In the span of about 20 seconds, Cooper has likely done irreparable damage.