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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Race As Subtext In NBA Negotiations

By Korben Dallas

The NBA has race as an undeniable subtext in the current lockout and negotiations about profit sharing. Just look at the negotiating table: On one side sit the owners, all Caucasian males apart from Jordan, ranging from mid-40s to soon-to-be octogenarians. Across from them sit their 20- and 30-something employees, almost 84 percent of whom are African American males. The older white men are now asking the young black men to take a pay cut in order to cover their purported losses, upward of $280 million a year. Given that, it’s almost ridiculous they call “basketball-related income” the elephant in the room.

Once race becomes a factor in the discussion, it begins to tinge perceptions of everything and everyone. Just pick an area of American society and race CAN become the elephant in the room.  The White House might have finally integrated, but the  marketplace is still a bastion of White-ownership and Black lack of ownership.  So a stalemate is going on in the NBA.  The one thing that will solve this problem will be when both sides lose so much money that it hurts.  Or a competitor threatens both sides. (Wash Post, 10/21/2011)
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