Jehu the Damaja

July 25th, 2013 at 10:07 AM ^

If I'm paying a guy millions of dollars a year to play a game, then I would take every precaution available to make sure I'm not wasting my money. I understand completely why they would do this, seeing as some of these players come from some real rough areas. But at the same time, you can't always assume someone still has gang ties because of a tattoo they got years ago as a teenager, some of them eventually grow out of it.

zblueman2

July 25th, 2013 at 10:56 AM ^

Interestingly, the symbol for the Gangster's Disciples in Chicago is a 6-pointed star.  So, what if one of these Buckeye 'experts' thought someone was in the GDs, but they were actually Jewish?  Highly improbable, yes, but something to consider nonetheless.  Don't ask me why I know these things.  I'm embarrassed about all of the hours i've spent watching gang documentaries on the history channel

swan flu

July 25th, 2013 at 2:24 PM ^

I taught in Waukegan, IL, and while I'm far from an expert, I did receive training on gang signs. Here's what I took away from it: gang signs are subtle. There is rarely 1 single thing that can absolutely identify someone with a specific gang, more often, it's a consistent pattern of things. For example, a person wearing a bracelet on their right wrist is not a gang sign in itself. A person wearing a bracelet on their right wrist, tilting there black and yellow "Famous Stars and Stripes" baseball cap (one of the few caps that has an "F" on it) tilted to the right, and wearing a basketball jersey with the number 5 on it has a consistent pattern of signs, which indicates their involvement in a gang,

swan flu

July 25th, 2013 at 2:25 PM ^

I taught in Waukegan, IL, and while I'm far from an expert, I did receive training on gang signs. Here's what I took away from it: gang signs are subtle. There is rarely 1 single thing that can absolutely identify someone with a specific gang, more often, it's a consistent pattern of things. For example, a person wearing a bracelet on their right wrist is not a gang sign in itself. A person wearing a bracelet on their right wrist, tilting there black and yellow "Famous Stars and Stripes" baseball cap (one of the few caps that has an "F" on it) tilted to the right, and wearing a basketball jersey with the number 5 on it has a consistent pattern of signs, which indicates their involvement in a gang,

falco_alba15

July 25th, 2013 at 12:04 PM ^

Not only is it basically racial profiling, but I'm pretty certain that the 1st and 4th Amendments comes into play here.

As much as I'd like for the NFL to clean up their image, I don't see how this is going to do anything but cause problems.

GoWings2008

July 25th, 2013 at 12:08 PM ^

so, if you are forgive me.  But I don't see how evaluation of tattoos is racial profiling.  Its honestly, in my world, consultant work. An organization that wants to know more about a topic is hiring someone to consult them on said topic.  Who says that the color of your skin is a driver of the tattoos you wear?

MMB 82

July 25th, 2013 at 1:35 PM ^

You can totally walk into your job with a swastika t-shirt, keep drugs in your desk drawer without anyone ever peeking inside, and tell your boss to go fuck himself whenever he asks you to perform a task.  They can't fire you.

/Right to work state'd

quiverfull

July 25th, 2013 at 12:37 PM ^

all races have gangs.   the more hardcore gangs, regardless of race, will have tats and those tats communicate things.  I did one guy for a quadruple homicide and part of my evidence was that he had a tat of an "RIP {favorite homeboy name here}" on his arm, that homeboy having been taken out by their most bitter rival gang.  

boatloads of info in tats, i mean boatloads. 

falco_alba15

July 25th, 2013 at 1:08 PM ^

On the subject of racial profiling, so I retract that statement, with my apologies.

However, the perceptions of tattoos and possible gang activity permeates the NFL culture, despite what the tattoos actually are. Cam Newton was told not to get tattoos. Colin Kaepernick was prematurely judged for his. Terrelle Pryor is a numbskull, but he isn't a gangster. I don't see how this can pass muster, because a tattoo is not necessarily an indication of gang activity, and vice-versus.

Private corporations make their own rules but they aren't necessarily exempt from Constitutional law. In cases of age discrimination, the NFL has lost lawsuits. Can it be argued that there is a such thing as tattoo discrimination? Legally, there is no basis for that, but tattoos are obtained for many reasons and individuals with them may not appreciate having their private lives and backgrounds examined based on their personal ink choices.

Like I said, I just don't see this ending well. I'll consult with a practicing lawyer in my department.

GoWings2008

July 25th, 2013 at 1:16 PM ^

And I see your point, however respectfully disagree.  I think the difference is in the way the NFL operates and how they interview potential draftees.  Its basically a job interview.  There are a number of ways those who have tattoos can hide their meaning to uneducated observers.  The point most are trying to make is that the race, sex, religion of a potential player is independent of their motivations to have a tattoo in the first place.  I'm sure the tattoo itself is not the discriminator, its the underlying lifestyle or personal choices that surrond the meanings behind the tattoo. 

And keep in mind, they're not using this information to fire anyone...they're using it as a discriminator of whether or not they want to hire them.

zblueman2

July 25th, 2013 at 3:32 PM ^

As has been pointed out, this most likely stems from the Hernandez thing, but has anyone actually said that Hernandez has tattoos that indicate gang affiliation?  This is a serious question, not a rhetorical one.  I'm geniunely curious.