Bubba Watson composed a widely shared message that criticized Black Lives Matter and included various conservative talking points.
In the summer of 2020, amid a renewed nationwide wave of protests against racial injustice and police brutality, we received multiple inquiries from readers about an anti-Black Lives Matter diatribe that Facebook users attributed to the golfer Bubba Watson.
The message itself was composed of a litany of conservative talking points on the major political and social issues from the summer of 2020: protests against racial injustice and police brutality, the Black Lives Matter movement, the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, state lockdowns, and face-mask policies. The message typically began:
I’m so confused right now. I see signs all over saying black lives matter. I’m just trying to figure out which black lives matter. It can’t be the unborn black babies. They are destroyed without a second thought. It’s not black cops. They don’t seem to matter. It’s not my black conservative friends. They are told to shut up if they know what’s best for them by their black counterparts. It’s not black business owners. Their property does not mean anything. It’s not blacks who fought in the military. Their statues are destroyed by the black lives matter protesters with disdain. So which black lives matter again?
Black Lives Matter. Of course they do! Then when multiple black police officers and individuals were killed during the ‘peaceful protests.’ I don’t see any outrage? Black individually owned businesses burned to the ground. Silence. Deadliest weekend in Chicago. NOTHING!! I can’t keep up. I just can’t. I’m exhausted trying to figure out what we’re all supposed to do, believe, and be offended and outraged by next. […]
Watson’s representatives did not respond to our requests for clarification, so we can’t say for sure whether he wrote or uttered the words attributed to him in the Facebook message. However, we could find no evidence to support that claim. In interviews, on his website, and in social media profiles, Watson has made no visible comments whatsoever on any of the controversies addressed in the Facebook post, meaning he has either never made any such remarks, or they have since been deleted. More generally, Watson does not typically comment publicly on political and social controversies.
Another sign that the Facebook post did not originate in something Watson said was the fact that the message itself was shared on Facebook for more than two weeks, with no author listed, and his name only began to be attached to it in late June and early July.