Ok, so I have to get deep just for one second. Our country (the U.S.) has a serious problem with race and race relations. We have a long history of mismanagement of this issue on the one hand and trying to ignore it completley on the other. I am not going to go into details because that is not what this post is about but we all know some very bad crap happened a long time ago and some seriously messed up things are still happening today (although, people tend to struggle with this latter concept). I only say all of this to let you know that I am not one of those people who is under the misconception that the Civil War or the Emancipation Proclamation or the Civil Rights Act or Brown v. Board of Education or whatever the hell else has been done in the name of equality has actually repaired all of the damage we have done.
HOWEVER, I find comments such as the following highly annoying. Jesse Jackson has taken a moment out of his busy schedule (what does JJ actually do???) to bless us with this gem of knowledge concerning Dan Gilbert's comments (See my previous post) about Lebron James decision to leave the Cavs. JJ said Dan Gilbert's “feelings of betrayal personify a slave master mentality” and constitute an “attack on all NBA players.” *BLANK STARE* I know I am running the risk of oversimplifying some really deep reference to race relations JJ is making but when did a slave master ever beg a slave to stay on the plantation by offering him 30 million dollars? And didn't slave owners like kill runaway slaves instead of writing open letters about them and posting them in public?
There are legitimate issues affecting Black people in the U.S. as a result of slavery and comments like this make people intolerant of hearing about or understanding those issues. It's like you have a really appetizing dish you want to serve that will engage everyone's taste buds but someone keeps crapping in it. How long until no one wants anything to do with that dish? People on all sides of the race issue in this country need to be much more realistic in their approach. We neither live in a country where race is of no relevance or in a country where it is the cause of every problem (though it may be lurking underneath a great number of them). I don't think Dan Gilbert displayed a slave master's mentality in dealing with James' decision, I think he acted half like a business man who just lost A LOT of money and half like a jilted lover who just lost his bed buddy. Let's put away the "race card" and save it for a time when it is actually relevant (because the time will come).