April 11, 2007

If I ever play fantasy basketball again, my team name is going to be the Nappy Headed Bro's.

Just kidding. Maybe I'm just really insensitive, but I really think the media is going way overboard on the comments this Imus guy made about the Rutgers women's basketball team. People say stupid/offensive/insensitive things all the time. Not that I'm saying it's okay. Maybe it's because I'm not part of the group directly targeted by his offensive comment. Maybe I don't care because I think 90% of the world is stupid anyways (not you, maybe me, but definitely not you) and I could care less what one individual says. I really think that there are more important things that African American leaders can be doing to help the black community than to get Imus fired from his radio show.

I think race relations are always going to be a difficult subject in this country (not just talking about NASCAR either). But I also hate it when it is made into a bigger problem than it needs to be, especially in the world of sports.

MLB is doing a cool thing this weekend by letting players wear #42 in honor of Jackie Robinson, one of my all-time sports heroes despite having played for the Dodgers.
Then I read not one, but several sports articles about how it's a 'problem' that there are so few black players in MLB today (8.4%). (I immediately classified these articles into the 90%.) Why are there no articles about how few black athletes play professional hockey? Why does nobody care that there are so few Asian players in the NBA shorter than 7'6"? Why are there no Jamacian bobsledders....oh wait, scratch that last one.

Answer: Sports is about competition, not race/ethnicity, except during the Olympics. This isn't kindergarden where we don't keep score and everyone is a winner. We want to see the best players of the sport compete against each other. If an alien from Mars came to Earth and could throw a football 85 yards on a line, he probably would get drafted by an NFL team in the first round, even with its red skin. (Yes, contrary to the belief that Martians have green skin, they are in fact, red.)

While I'm on this rant, I just have one final comment: Forget the 8.4% of black players in MLB. I'd rather see an increase from the 3.6% in UC admissions. I think working to get a few more African American or Latino students into college is more important than trying to kick an old radio guy out into the street or trying to get more inner-city kids to play baseball. (That's what AACE Talent Search does. Wow, what a coincidence!)

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