Racism & Sports


If you’ve seen my other columns, you can tell that I don’t like steroid users. Especially those that lie or try to cover it up in some way. Well, thanks to Floyd Mayweather Jr., who beat the urine drinker Juan Manuel Marquez (yes he does) this past Saturday. I can no longer hide my disdain for those who bring race into the discussion of why they’re disliked so much. It’s difficult enough to talk about racism in a civilized way now a days. For those, like Mayweather, who go out of their way to use racism as the reason why they are not liked as much as other athletes of a different skin color sickens me. My reason for this column comes directly from Mayweather’s mouth a few days before his fight against Marquez Saturday. He calmly told reporters what he thinks has been unfair treatment from the media and the public, based on his race.

“If you’re rich, you’re a rich n—–,” he said. “If you’re poor, you’re a poor n—-. If you’re smart, you’re a smart n—–. At the end of the day, they still look at me as a n—–.”

He compares race to his last fight against Ricky Hatton in England.

“This country needs to be more positive,” he said. “We’re already at war. We’re in a recession, we’re at war and we continue to be negative. The fans in the UK showed me more love than in my own country. That’s crazy … Sometimes I’ll sit back, I’ll be in my theater sometimes, and I’ll think: ‘Imagine if I was the same fighter that I am, and I was the same person that I am, and I was from another country. Can you just imagine how big I’d be?’

“But I wouldn’t change my life for nothing in the world. There’s nothing like being young, black and rich. But there are certain things you think about. If Floyd Mayweather was white, I’d be the biggest athlete in America. The biggest, the biggest. I know that for a fact.”

He went on further by saying Oscar De La Hoya never gets criticized by the media.

“One thing you never hear. You never hear anything negative about Oscar De La Hoya,” he said. “Anything he do negative, it gets swept under the rug.”

He also managed to jab (pardon the pun) HBO Boxing analyst Larry Merchant, “he don’t know nothing about boxing,” and the worst was to Emmanuel Steward, “He’s an Uncle Tom.”

Now the most beautiful, and I’m being sarcastic when I say “beautiful,” thing about this tirade is the fact that Mayweather just doesn’t get it. He never will. When you talk about “I’ll be in my theater sometimes, and I’ll think.” And this gem, “There’s nothing like being young, black and rich.” What is a person supposed to think when you say things like that and you try to include race into your argument? People don’t like you because you come off as arrogant, asinine and selfish. Mayweather did a correspondent piece for Jim Rome and his TV show a few years ago. Here is a quote that will always be played in the back of mind, “You know I keeps a private jet.” Yeah, I’m sure you do with a theater in it to.

There are legitimate reasons why they dislike you. The ones I mentioned above plus you play in a dying if not a dead sport. Boxing is gone in my mind. It ended when I saw Mike Tyson bite both of Evander Holyfield’s ears off. That was it. It has become too flashy with the weigh-ins and the pre-fight pressers. It’s all drama and when the fight actually starts, it bores you to death with the stupid chess game. Guys, it seems to me, go out and try not to ruin their pretty faces. I’m not accusing anyone of throwing a fight, but that’s the impression I get watching most fights now a days. If your going to throw racism into the discussion irresponsibly, you will and should get called on it.

Yes, there are those that still live in the Pre-Civil Rights era. It’s true, but to put everyone into the same group is just dumb in my opinion. Those that want to blame their trials and tribulations on a different race, look no further than to the President of the United States Barack Obama. He is of color and he is in that position only forty years after the Civil Rights Movement. Some thought it would never happen in this country, but it did. Tiger Woods is probably the greatest golfer ever. He is also of color and is in a predominately white sport. Jackie Robinson changed Baseball and really the entire culture by his play and the way he conducted himself on and off the field. You want an example of minorities making it to the top without race getting in their way. I give you three. I could give you many more.

Mayweather, Milton Bradley who was suspended by the Cubs for his comments about the organization and fans. Saying, “you understand why they haven’t won in 100 years here.” Bradley has really complained everywhere he has been in the MLB. Most of the time it doesn’t include him playing the race card, but he needs to get his act together and realize that’s how it works in this culture. You don’t perform, you don’t get the love. It’s not because of your color. If that’s what you want to believe that’s your problem. Kanye West is another one with his act at the VMA’s. I could say that his act was racist because the person he upstaged (Taylor Swift) was white. But I won’t. It wasn’t racist, just stupid. Would it be brought down on a white person if they upstaged someone of color like that. Absolutely. Legitimately or not. Enough with the branding and blaming. Just perform, keep low and do plenty of good things outside of sports that will outweigh the bad. Example: Serena Williams and her scathing of a line judge at the US Open.

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