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Hold On, Travis Kelce Did What?

An analysis of the social consequences of Kelce’s outburst.

Hold on, Travis Kelce did what?

This Superbowl Sunday was full of incredibly memorable moments, from the Chiefs winning a victory in overtime, to Usher and Alicia Keys getting rather romantic on stage. Though the moment we’ll be examining in this article is Travis Kelce’s outburst on the sidelines.

During the first half of the game, cameras caught Kelce screaming at his 65-year-old coach, Andy Reid, while pushing him. Reid was visibly startled and stumbled due to the force of Kelce’s shove. After the game, Reid said that Kelce

Cameras were able to catch Kelce’s moment of aggression. Credits to CBS Sports.

“keeps [him] young” and “tested [Reid’s] hip out.”

Kelce brushed off the incident by joking about it, he stated,

“I was just telling him how much I love him.”

Now even if those involved in the incident have moved past it, we must examine the principle of the situation. This is a situation where a celebrity became violent with another person on live television and this person very well may have had no real say in angering the other person. Does this base scenario sound familiar to you at all? Maybe you’re thinking of the incident between Will Smith and Chris Rock.

At the 94th Academy Awards, Smith walked up to the stage and slapped Rock after he made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. This situation was perceived by the public in a very different way than the one that involved Kelce. After the slap, Smith was banned from the Academy Awards and has since not received invitations to other award shows such as the Golden Globes.

I can acknowledge that these two situations are not perfectly comparable, the settings of a football field and award show are incredibly different. Though one must wonder, what would have happened if a player who looked more like Smith acted the way Kelce did?

Philadelphia Eagles player, AJ Brown.

AJ Brown asked the same question. Brown is a wide receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles, Brown is also a 6′ 1″ dark skin Black man. After videos of Kelce’s tantrum circulated the internet, Brown took to X (also commonly known as Twitter) and responded to a clip with the statement,

“If that was me I would’ve been kicked out the league.”

To be entirely honest, there is probably a fair amount of truth to this statement. Both in the media and in everyday life, the color of a person’s skin seems to be a factor in how dangerous they are and in turn how severely they are punished.

Many people on the internet are excusing Kelce’s behavior, claiming that it was the “heat of the moment” or that it was understandable because “so much was on the line.” The mentality that violence is acceptable in stressful situations is most certainly not one that extends to all people, nor is it a valid line of thinking.

Kelce has not received any kind of fine or punishment for his behavior whereas Black players have received more punishment for far less severe actions.

Marshawn Lynch in his role of Mr. G in the 2023 movie, Bottoms.

In 2014, Seahawks running back, Marshawn Lynch was fined $50,000 by the NFL for not speaking to the media after his team’s Superbowl win. During the 2014 season, he elected to not speak to the press after a game and was then fined another $50,000.

Is it not strange that a player who chose to not speak to the media was fined $100,000, whereas another player who became physically aggressive with his elderly head coach got off essentially scot-free?


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About the Contributor
Estella Bland
Estella Bland, Editor
Estella is a senior at MHS. This is Estella's second year on the Newspaper team and she is now the Arts and Entertainment Editor. In addition to Newspaper Estella is in the National Honor Society, Key Club, and she is the President of Ethnic Club. Estella's hobbies include cooking, art, reading, and listening to music.
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