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Former Dolphins Coach Brian Flores Sues NFL and Teams Alleging Racial Discrimination

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The suit states that NFL is “is racially segregated and is managed much like a plantation” and “remains rife with racism, particularly when it comes to the hiring and retention of Black Head Coaches, Coordinators and General Managers.”


Accusations of Racist Practices in NFL

Former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores, who was fired last month, filed a lawsuit against the National Football League and its teams Tuesday alleging racial discrimination, particularly in hiring practices.

The suit, which is seeking class-action status and unspecified damages, specifically names the NFL, the New York Giants, the Denver Broncos, and the Dolphins as plaintiffs. It lists the other 29 teams in the league as “John Doe’s.”

Flores claimed that “the NFL remains rife with racism, particularly when it comes to the hiring and retention of Black Head Coaches, Coordinators and General Managers.”

The suit said that over the years, the NFL and its teams “have been given every chance to do the right thing. Rules have been implemented, promises made—but nothing has changed. In fact, the racial discrimination has only been made worse by the NFL’s disingenuous commitment to social equity.”

“In certain critical ways, the NFL is racially segregated and is managed much like a plantation,” the suit continued. “Its 32 owners—none of whom are Black—profit substantially from the labor of NFL players, 70% of whom are Black. The owners watch the games from atop NFL stadiums in their luxury boxes, while their majority-Black workforce put their bodies on the line every Sunday, taking vicious hits and suffering debilitating injuries to their bodies and their brains while the NFL and its owners reap billions of dollars.”

The filing noted that with the recent firings of Flores and Houston Texans coach David Culley, there is now just one Black head coach in the league. In the rare cases where Black head coaches are hired, the suit says that they are “discriminated against in connection with the terms and conditions of their employment and compensation and terminated even as far less successful white Head Coaches are retained.” 

“Sham” Interviews and Game Fixing Claims

Specifically, the filing states that Flores was fired from the Dolphins despite leading the team to back-to-back winning seasons for the first time since 2003.

According to the suit, Flores refused a “directive” from Dolphins owner Stephen Ross to intentionally lose games so the team could get the top pick in the draft. Ross allegedly offered to pay Flores $100,000 for every loss in his first season as coach.

It goes on to accuse Ross of repeatedly pressuring Flores to recruit “a prominent quarterback in violation of League tampering rules,” and when Flores refused he was “treated with disdain” and “ostracized” until he was ultimately fired. After his removal, he was defamed in the media and NFL as someone who was hard to work with and cast as an “angry Black man.”

Following his ouster, Flores was up for the head coach position with the New York Giants, but he claims management subjected him to “a sham interview” process so they would be in compliance with the Rooney Rule, which requires teams to interview minority candidates for vacant senior positions. 

Flores asserts that just hours after setting up his interview, he learned in texts from New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick that the Giants had filled the slot with Brian Daboll, the white offensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills.

In the messages, Belichick appeared to congratulate Flores for landing the job, which he had not interviewed for yet. When Flores asked Belichick if he had meant to send the message to Daboll, who had interviewed before him, Belichick apologized and said he had messed up.

“I double checked and misread the text,” he wrote. “I think they are naming Brian Daboll.”

After learning of Dabolls selection, Flores says he was still “forced to sit through a dinner” with the Giant’s general manager and “give an extensive interview for a job that he already knew he would not get […] for no reason other than for the Giants to demonstrate falsely […] that it was in compliance with the Rooney Rule.”

Notably, Flores claimed in the suit that this was not the only “sham” interview he was put through. He also had an interview with the Denver Broncos in 2019, during which he alleged that the teams’ executives showed up an hour late and “looked completely disheveled,” making it “obvious that they had drinking heavily the night before.”

“It was clear from the substance of the interview that Mr. Flores was interviewed only because of the Rooney Rule, and that the Broncos never had any intention to consider him as a legitimate candidate for the job,” the suit said.

Response From Plaintiffs

The plaintiffs named in the suit have responded broadly by denying the allegations.

In a statement Tuesday, the NFL said the claims are “without merit.”

“The NFL and our clubs are deeply committed to ensuring equitable employment practices and continue to make progress in providing equitable opportunities throughout our organizations. Diversity is core to everything we do, and there are few issues on which our clubs and our internal leadership team spend more time,” the organization added.

The Dolphins also said they “vehemently deny any allegations of racial discrimination and are proud of the diversity and inclusion throughout our organization.”

“The implication that we acted in a manner inconsistent with the integrity of the game is incorrect,” the Miami team continued.

The Broncos called the allegations “blatantly false,” while the Giants defended their selection of Daboll and claimed that “Flores was in the conversation to be our head coach until the eleventh hour.” 

See what others are saying: (The New York Times) (The Associated Press) (NPR)

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AMC Will Set Movie Ticket Prices Based on Seat Locations

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The decision has faced backlash, but AMC executives claim it will ensure that “guests have more control over their experience.”


Sightline by AMC

AMC, the largest movie theater chain in the U.S., is changing its price metric by charging more at admission for preferred seats and offering value seats at a lower cost. 

The new pricing experiment is called Sightline by AMC, and it offers three different tiers. Value Sightline includes the seats right next to the screen, while Preferred Sightline includes seats that are centered and in the middle of the theater. The average seats, or Standard Sightline, will remain at the normal price of admission. 

“While every seat at AMC delivers an amazing moviegoing experience, we know there are some moviegoers who prioritize their specific seat and others who prioritize value moviegoing,” AMC’s executive vice president and CMO Eliot Hamlisch said to Variety. “Sightline at AMC accommodates both sentiments to help ensure that our guests have more control over their experience, so that every trip to an AMC is a great one.”

However, Sightline will not apply to AMC’s Discount Tuesday deal — every ticket will still be offered at $5 regardless of seat location. Sightline will also only apply to evening shows after 4:00 p.m.

The Reception

The movie theater giant has faced backlash for this new price structure, including from people in the entertainment industry.

“This is absurdly stupid & only creates unnecessary classism,” actor and director Seth Green wrote on Twitter. “AMCTheatres clearly focused on squeezing new profits anywhere possible. Trying to get people back into theaters? Don’t penalize folks with less to spend.” 

Actor Elijah Wood also condemned the change for disproportionately impacting lower-income families.

“The movie theater is and always has been a sacred democratic space for all and this new initiative by AMCTheatres would essentially penalize people for lower income and reward for higher income,” Wood wrote. 

This is not the first time AMC has experimented with its pricing. During the opening weekend of “The Batman” last year, AMC announced it would be charging $1 to $2 more for it compared to other movies playing at the same time. Back in 2019, the chain tested a different pricing initiative, charging more for movies “of the highest appeal” and making less in-demand movies cheaper. 

See what others are saying: (Variety) (Complex) (NowThis

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Neo-Nazi Leader Charged in Plot to “Destroy Baltimore” By Attacking Substations — a Growing Trend

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Experts say that far-right extremist attacks on energy infrastructure have grown significantly in the last few years.


Conspiracy to Attack Maryland Energy Systems

A neo-Nazi leader who was recently released from prison and a woman he met while incarcerated were arrested on Monday for plotting to “completely destroy” the power grid in Baltimore, Maryland.

Special Agent in Charge Thomas J. Sobocinski of the FBI field office in Baltimore said in a press conference that the two had “conspired to inflict maximum harm on the power grid,” by targeting five electrical substations that serve 1.2 million people in central Maryland.

He noted that the pair ”were not just talking, but taking steps to fulfill their threats and further their extremist goals.”

Their plot, however, was foiled by law enforcement before they could put it into action, in large part because both extensively detailed their plans to an FBI informant on encrypted messaging apps.

Sobocinski described their extremist views as “racially or ethnically motivated.”

The neo-Nazi leader is the founder of a small but dangerous group called the Atomwaffen Division, which uses civil disorder and violence because they believe it will help spark a race war in the U.S. — a white supremacist theory known as “accelerationism.”

Authorities say that he previously plotted with his roommates — also members of the group — to attack energy facilities in Florida. Before he could, he was arrested and put in federal prison for possessing bomb-making materials.

During that time, he began to communicate with the woman, who was serving time in a separate facility in Maryland after being charged with robbing multiple convenience stores with a machete.

Authorities point to several pieces of evidence that indicate she too had been radicalized, including a statement she wrote that prosecutors say resembles a manifesto, in which she references Hitler, the Unabomber, and a far-right Norwegian terrorist and stated: “I would sacrifice **everything** for my people.”

The woman’s mother also told The Washington Post that she had become involved with neo-Nazi beliefs in prison, which she has been in and out of since 2006.

A Growing Trend

Federal law enforcement officials have said there is “no indication” the planned attack in Baltimore was connected to other attacks. The plot, however, comes on the heels of similar events.

In early December, there were a series of attacks on substations in North Carolina that were very reminiscent of what the pair in Maryland were plotting. In fact, prosecutors even said the neo-Nazi leader sent the FBI informant a video about that attack. 

While authorities have provided little information on a suspect or motive in North Carolina, it has been reported that they have zeroed in on two possibilities that both center around far-right extremism. 

Around the same time in December, there were also a series of attacks on the grid in the Pacific Northwest.

Researchers and homeland security officials have said that far-right extremists have been increasingly targeting energy infrastructure while operating under the neo-Nazi theory of accelerationism.

According to a study by the program on extremism at George Washington University released in September, white supremacist attempts to target energy systems “dramatically increased in frequency” from 2016 to 2022.

“Since 2019, white supremacist attacks plots against critical infrastructure systems have distinctly increased,” the study found.

Brian Harrell, a former Homeland Security official who oversaw infrastructure protection at the department, told The Post that he saw a noticeable surge in violent extremists talking about carrying out these attacks online.

“When digging into the ‘dark web,’ social media portals and chat rooms, we quickly see that targeting and destroying energy infrastructure is a tactic many extremist groups fantasize about,” he said.

Editor’s Note: At Rogue Rocket, we make it a point to not include the names and pictures of mass murders, suspected mass murderers, or those accused of committing violent crimes who may have been seeking attention or infamy. Therefore, we will not be linking to other sources, as they may contain these details.

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College Board Changes AP African American Studies After Backlash From DeSantis Amid Education Culture War

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As requested by DeSantis, the College Board removed lessons on contemporary topics including Black Lives Matter, queer studies, and reparations.


College Board Rolls Out Curriculum

The College Board, which oversees Advanced Placement high school courses, announced an official curriculum framework for its new, landmark Advanced Placement African American studies on Wednesday.

The announcement, made on the first day of Black History Month, has faced scrutiny for seeming to scale back a number of relevant subjects that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) and other state education officials had criticized.

In January, DeSantis said that the new course would be banned in Florida unless changes were made, arguing that a draft version of the course was “woke.” 

Education officials claimed that the class, which had been in the making for nearly a decade, violated a recent state law dubbed the Stop WOKE Act. The legislation regulates public school instruction on race by banning critical race theory and any education that describes some groups as oppressed and others as privileged based on race or sex.

Democrats denounced DeSantis’ action as a political stunt and urged the College Board to maintain its principles.

According to reports, many historical topics like slavery largely remain intact from the previous draft. However, important contemporary issues like Black Lives Matter, affirmative action, queer studies, reparations, and intersectionality — all of which Florida leaders objected to — were removed from curriculum requirements and are no longer part of the AP exam.

Instead, those areas of study have been downgraded to be part of a list of options students can pursue for a mandatory research project. The College Board also added a new research project idea to that list that will certainly please the right: “Black conservatism.”

It has additionally been reported that the organization pulled names of multiple Black authors the state education officials had flagged as problematic, including many famous and pioneering Black scholars who wrote about critical race theory, the queer experience, and Black feminism. 

The College Board defended itself against criticism in a press release announcing the changes, claiming that the process of developing the framework “has operated independently from political pressure.”

DeSantis’ Ongoing Culture War

DeSantis’ attempts to influence the national curriculum of an AP course are just his latest in a much broader effort to control what is and is not taught in public schools.

Just one day before the College Board announced the revised course, the governor outlined what The New York Times described as “his most aggressive swing yet at the education establishment.”

Specifically, he proposed a massive overhaul to higher education in the state that would defund and eliminate diversity and equity programs, mandate courses on Western civilization, and reduce tenure protections that are essential to ensure professors have freedom of expression.

Furthermore, the effects of another law DeSantis signed last year are now just beginning to materialize. The policy, which went into effect this July, requires every school book to be age-appropriate, “free of pornography,” and “suited to student needs.” 

To follow those guidelines, school books have to be approved by a certified media specialist who has undergone specific training.

Notably, the law also states that teachers can be charged with third-degree felonies if they “knowingly or unknowingly” give students access to a book that the specialists say is harmful — meaning that they could face up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Last month, the state education department clarified that the rule does not just apply to school libraries, but also to any books a teacher keeps in their classroom too. 

Multiple outlets reported this week that records they obtained show at least two school districts have now directed teachers to either remove their books or hide them until review to avoid the possibility of going to jail.

See what others are saying: (The New York Times) (The Washington Post) (The Associated Press)

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