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Vikings' Mattison urges fans to 'really reflect' on racist messages

Minnesota Vikings running back Alexander Mattison said he received dozens of hateful messages after his team lost a game on Thursday.
Vikings' Mattison urges fans to 'really reflect' on racist messages
Posted at 8:00 PM, Sep 15, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-15 22:01:05-04

Minnesota Vikings running back Alexander Mattison said he received dozens of "disgustingly disrespectful messages" on social media following his team's loss on Thursday to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Mattison was taunted for making one of the team's four fumbles on Thursday, when the Vikings lost 34-28.

Mattison, who is Black, said the messages posted on Instagram included public comments and private messages, some of which included racial slurs. At least one message encouraged suicide, Mattison said. 

“Under my helmet, I am a human, a father, a son,” Mattison said in a statement on Instagram, directed at the more than 60 individuals who contacted him. He encouraged users to "really reflect" on the effect their words can have.

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In a Friday statement, the Vikings condemned the messages, saying, "there simply is no room for racist words or actions in sports or society. The Vikings will continue to fight to eliminate hate, to educate and to foster a diverse, equitable, and inclusive community that respects and values our unique backgrounds."

The NFL also released a statement condemning the social media messages, writing, "We stand firmly with Alexander and remind fans to remember the humanity of all players and celebrate their contributions to the game we all love."


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