A message about racism from Derrick Gunn and his daughter Cristina

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NBCSP

A message about racism from Derrick Gunn and his daughter Cristina

I am African American. My wife is Mexican-American. We were blessed to raise three beautiful, highly intelligent, opinionated children. We have always treated everybody the way we want and expect to be treated. 

We have been fortunate in so many ways to experience an incredible number of people of all colors that we consider not just friends but family. But we like so many other minorities have experienced racism in our lives. Some of it from pure ignorance while other times because people simply were not aware of how what they considered a harmless statement or gesture could pierce a person of color. We have taught our kids to always be respectful but stand your ground when needed.

What has been happening over the past week is sending shockwaves across our nation. Not just blacks but people of all colors standing in the trenches together demanding change to the social injustices that have polluted our country for decades. 

Recently my middle kid Cristina decided to share some of the things she’s experienced in her life. I hope and pray as you read her story, especially those of you who have never had to walk the path of a minority in America, that you will have a better understanding of why things have to change NOW in America. Do not have pity for my daughter — that’s not what she’s looking for. She is a strong, independent, minority woman. A wife and mother with a college degree. Her goal is to educate. After all, education is the key to knowledge. I am so proud of her, as I am of my other two children:

Imagine spending hours combing your natural hair only to sit down to lunch with your friends and be told, 'your hair looks like you stuck your hand in an electrical socket.'

Imagine excitedly arriving to your first week of college and your white suite mate tells you, 'I’m so lucky I got paired with a black girl like you and not one of those ‘dirty’ black girls.'

Imagine excitedly preparing to travel to a foreign country, but you remember you should check if all the cities you are visiting are safe for black people.

Imagine all the joy and excitement of dating someone new, but you have to ask them the question, 'is your family OK with me being black?'

Imagine when the answer to that question is, 'no, they’re not.'

Imagine having your hair pet and pulled like an animal. All against your wishes.

Imagine when you choose to wear your naturally curly hair, and someone takes the time out of their day to comment, 'I see you’ve got your crazy hair today.'

Then imagine when they touch your hair they say, 'that’s so weird! Your hair feels like straw ... or like a Brillo pad!'

Imagine planning a fun cross country trip, but you go out of your way to avoid certain states and cities because you’re not sure how safe it is for black people there.

Imagine being followed around the store by an employee because you know they’re watching to see if you steal something.

Imagine being called dirty on a REGULAR basis because, like most black people, I don’t wash my hair every single day.

I’ve been on this earth 30 years, and these are a FRACTION of my stories. And sadly, my stories are minimal compared to most of the racism that many of my black brothers and sisters face every single day.

I’ve been told my whole life not to get upset. I've been told to not get angry when people make these stupid comments because they honestly don’t know.

But these last few days, I am in shock and awe of the stupidity and ignorance I’ve seen on my news feed. People that I’ve known for years, people I thought were friends, are making comments and sharing videos that take away from the narrative at hand.

We are tired. We are angry. And we want justice.

Black people have been here for centuries. We helped build this country. It’s as much ours as it is yours. And yet, we still don’t receive the same liberties our constitution was founded on.

So, before you post another video about merchandise being stolen, or about your favorite brunch spot getting destroyed, take the time to LISTEN to our stories! Ask yourself, 'how can I better support the real narrative at hand?'

To all my white friends: I encourage you to use your platform to support and lift up your black friends. STOP sharing videos of black looters and criminals. That goes against what we’re trying to say. It’s time to step up and be a white ally to the black community. Spread messages of all the GOOD black people are doing for this country, and how they’ve influenced your lives for the better.

And, for the love of all that is good, please stop using MLK quotes to try and pacify our cries for help. We want justice. We want to feel safe in our own country. We want the same freedoms as white Americans.

If you’ve ever been pulled over by a cop and your first reaction wasn’t to fear for your life, then you don’t understand the racism and injustice we face every single day of our lives.

Now is your chance to be on the right side of history.

George Floyd matters. Ahmaud Arbery matters. Every innocent black person that has died at the hands of corrupt police matters.

Black lives matter! ✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿

-Cristina Aguirre Gunn

Which decade of Philadelphia sports are you? Take the quiz to find out

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AP Images/NBC Sports Philadelphia

Which decade of Philadelphia sports are you? Take the quiz to find out

Throughout the years, Philadelphia sports have had quite the journey. 

Looking back, every decade went through some highs and lows but no matter what, it was always a thrilling time (minus those few pesky seasons that will forever haunt us ... I'm looking at you 1993 Phillies and 2010 Flyers). 

While some years see more success than others, it always seems like the four teams find a way to balance out to keep Philly sane. 

Which decade of Philadelphia sports do you resonate with the most?

Take  the quiz below and find out: 

 

Vote Now! Who is the ultimate Philly Sports Villain?

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NBC Sports Philadelphia

Vote Now! Who is the ultimate Philly Sports Villain?

All last week, fans voted to find the ultimate villain for the Eagles, Sixers, Phillies and Flyers. Now, we’re down to four contestants. 

Vote for the ultimate Philly Sports Villain below. 

Here are your nominees:  

Eagles: Chip Kelly

Kelly ruined the Eagles from the inside. And even though the Birds went on to win a Super Bowl just a couple years after his ouster, that pain still runs deep. 

That’s why Kelly beat out Norman Braman, Michael Irvin and Jadeveon Clowney to become the ultimate Eagles villain. 

 

The shame of it was that Chip wasn’t a bad coach. The Eagles won 20 games in his first two years. But he was an awful general manager, getting rid of great talents like DeSean Jackson, LeSean McCoy and Nick Foles. And his idea to treat NFL players like his college athletes was a complete disaster. We always say Chip the GM got Chip the Coach fired … but Chip’s personality didn’t help either. 

After Andy Reid created one of the best locker room cultures in the NFL over 14 years in Philadelphia, it didn’t take Kelly long to completely destroy it. He was cold, awkward and was devoid of what we later began to call “emotional intelligence.” 

— Dave Zangaro 

Sixers: The Colangelos 

The other villains on this list are plenty worthy and deserve your consideration.

But are they guilty of a hostile takeover, nepotism, poor personnel decisions, the mishandling of a star player’s injury and last but certainly not least making the organization the laughing stock of the entire league?

Only one father-son duo is guilty of that: The Colangelos. While you may not have been on board with Sam Hinkie’s Process, consider how disastrous Bryan Colangelo’s tenure was as the team’s president of basketball operations.

Colangelo got the Ben Simmons’ pick right … but little else after. He passed on All-Star Pascal Siakam twice late in the first round of that same draft. Under his stewardship, Joel Embiid played a game on what turned out to be a season-ending injury. He got swindled by Danny Ainge and agreed to trade for the No. 1 overall pick before even seeing Markelle Fultz work out. He also got little in return for former lottery picks Nerlens Noel and Jahlil Okafor.

And just when you thought things couldn’t get much worse, Collargate happened. While Colangelo feels “absolved” for the incident it’s still a stain for the Sixers’ organization and still a punchline around the league.

While you can’t go wrong picking any of the villains on this list, consider the Colangelo conglomerate as the biggest.

— Paul Hudrick 

Phillies: Joe Carter

It's no surprise that Carter beat out Chipper Jones, J.D. Drew and Cody Ross for ultimate Phillies Villain. The guy hit a walk-off home run to win his team a World Series, which has happened only twice in baseball history.

It was the ultimate heartbreak for Phillies fans.

Jim Salisbury had an interesting, funny story about how Carter even got to Toronto. Then-Blue Jays GM Pat Gillick was the man who orchestrated the blockbuster trade that sent Fred McGriff and Tony Fernandez to San Diego for Roberto Alomar and Carter. You don't see 2-for-2 trades like that anymore. 

Carter has his own wing in the Hall of Phillies Villains, though he was a very good player against most teams. He hit 402 career home runs. The biggest one came at the Phillies' expense.

— Corey Seidman

Flyers: Sidney Crosby 

Not only is Crosby the clear-cut No. 1 Flyers villain, but he’s also right up there among the top villains in Philly sports.

The rivalry with the Penguins’ star goes back to 2005 and is still humming.

Crosby has scored more goals (43) against the Flyers than he has against any other team and he owns 105 points in 70 career regular-season meetings with the orange and black. He has also knocked the Flyers out of the playoffs three times and has won three Stanley Cup titles in Pittsburgh while the Flyers continue to look for their first championship since 1975.

There’s something about the way in which he plays (and wins) that has never jived with Flyers fans. The disdain for No. 87 is authentic and it won’t be fizzling anytime soon.

— Jordan Hall