Notice This Racial Double Standard in the Coverage of These Rioting Denver Broncos Fans?

Source: AP
Source: AP

The Denver Broncos won Super Bowl 50 on Sunday night, leading tons of fans to go out into the streets to celebrate. But some got rowdier than others, and in this case, some did what can only be described as riot. By night's end, at least a dozen were arrested in the melee:

It's not the first time that sports fans have rioted after a big victory.

But when Americans decide to riot in celebration, they get slapped on the wrist. When black people riot as an extension of their frustration with state violence, they get lambasted in national media and hit with even more punitive public policy. They're "animals" or "losers," in the words of Kevin Sorbo, the white actor who criticized Ferguson protesters. 

Take a look at just a few examples:

In 2010, after the San Francisco Giants won their first World Series in more than 50 years, fans took to the streets and caused mayhem:

And then again after the team won in 2014:

In 2011, the Vancouver Canucks lost the Stanley Cup hockey championship and poured out into the streets in Canada, where dozens were arrested and injured: 


In 2015 Ohio State University's football team won a college championship, which led to a night in which firefighters had to put out almost 90 fires:

In each instance, the violence was more or less written off by the public at large. At worst, it was just poor decision-making by overzealous fans. 

But it wasn't in Baltimore, after Freddie Gray was killed by police:

Or Ferguson, after Mike Brown was shot dead by Darren Wilson:

Or Brooklyn, New York, after 16-year-old Kimani Gray was killed by police:

Or Oakland, California, after video of Oscar Grant's death at the hands of a transit officer went viral:

It seems like violence is OK if it's a celebration, but not if it's a struggle. 

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Jamilah King

Jamilah King is a senior staff writer at Mic. She was previously an editor at Colorlines.

MORE FROM

Will Justice Anthony Kennedy retire at end of Supreme Court term? Here's what we know.

Rumors that the 80-year-old swing justice may leave the bench are fueling fear of a second Trump pick on the nation's high court.

3 states and D.C. allow same flammable building materials behind Grenfell Tower fire

The causes of London's Grenfell Tower are similar to the justifications used to waive fire regulations in the U.S.

New Jersey bill would require kids to be taught how to interact with police

Students from kindergarten through 12th grade would receive the education.

UK Parliament hit with cyberattack

Members of Parliament had difficulty accessing their emails Saturday in the wake of the attack.

Istanbul LGBT pride march banned by government for safety concerns

A right-wing nationalist group has vowed to stop the protest.

Compounds seized by US in December reportedly contained material useful in Russia probe

The Trump administration has reportedly been considering returning the New York and Maryland compounds to Russia.

Will Justice Anthony Kennedy retire at end of Supreme Court term? Here's what we know.

Rumors that the 80-year-old swing justice may leave the bench are fueling fear of a second Trump pick on the nation's high court.

3 states and D.C. allow same flammable building materials behind Grenfell Tower fire

The causes of London's Grenfell Tower are similar to the justifications used to waive fire regulations in the U.S.

New Jersey bill would require kids to be taught how to interact with police

Students from kindergarten through 12th grade would receive the education.

UK Parliament hit with cyberattack

Members of Parliament had difficulty accessing their emails Saturday in the wake of the attack.

Istanbul LGBT pride march banned by government for safety concerns

A right-wing nationalist group has vowed to stop the protest.

Compounds seized by US in December reportedly contained material useful in Russia probe

The Trump administration has reportedly been considering returning the New York and Maryland compounds to Russia.