Straight No Chaser: Red, White, and Boo!!!!

By Desi Cortez
Updated: August 9, 2008

DENVER — I don’t believe it’s a case of if, but rather when….

When will the average American sports fan disown, disavow the Men’s Olympic Basketball Team? At what point will an Afro-American player say something, do something – which displeases the American heartland fan? Look too Black, act to Black, walk too Black, talk too Black…?

Brandish an Obama button.

Flashback, Jump-back to 2004…. Americans, Americans, yes….Americans were jumping up-and-down for Argentina to defeat the USA team. Does that not fall under the category of treason?

What an hell-of-a tightrope a black man must straddle to accommodate the whims of the White sports fan. The pretzel like contortions we must twist ourselves into, to fit white folk’s notion of what a Black person must do and be.

At what time, at what place – will a young Black olympian do something which may aggravate or perplex the white reporter, the white fan, the dominant, but ever shirking angry white male minority segment of America?

How does my country feel about me? And, how do I feel about my country….? The question the city of Brotherly Loves’ QB had to ask himself when he spoke out about different standards and expectations for Black QBs. Fans turned on him instantly.

Now, let’s acknowledge the existence of Joe Rockhead the racist sports fan, who hates the NBA – loved Larry Bird then, hates the NBA today – is “just not comfortable with the way those Black Olympians carry themselves…” finds them “way too cocky”, too sure of themselves – is also the very same Blue collar (hiding a red neck) guy who despises an Ivy League educated, Harvard Law professor turned senator name Obama….finds him “arrogant.”

That Ol’School 3-pointer the Senator from Illinois sunk in Afghanistan, with the world watching, the Republicans still found ways to belittle and bemoan that humanizing feat.

Wow, you simply can’t satisfy some white folks…..

Forgive me, I know I should mind-my-manners, let lying dogs’ lye, but I can’t help but recall; 4 years ago, when the White America male sports fan turned their collective backs on the Mens USA Basketball Team, and rooted for, y-e-s cheered for….. the opposing team. Talk show host, word-smiths, fans, they all cheered for the enemy

That act of outright betrayal reflected the never-ending cultural war raging in America. It highlights the cold-civil war Black and White folks have been engaged in since the bloody Civil War stopped in 1865.

Excuse me, but I think that type of open blatant disloyalty, shown to a team which represented the USA, which still brought back to the states a Bronze Medal…., constitutes treason, carried out under the guise of…..the players were too Black.

Allow me to put a black face on too Black; Too many braids, too many tattoos, too much bling, way too much blang. Too much attitude, too much “Showtime,” too undisciplined and unfocused, too many hot-shots as far as the average fan in Idaho saw it , too many hot dogs to the boys down in Mississippi. Just too , too many blacks as far as the guys in Boston were concerned. Too urban, too too suburban…just too Black.

Not enough guys who look and carry themselves like the Redskins Jason Taylor or the NBA’s model Negro…Tim Duncan – guys who disarm and make comfortable mainstream America. Let’s face it, the AI clones unsettle white folks. White folks have clear preferences.

Too many young men who reflect …every day Black America for White folks taste. Black kids out-of the bowels-of-America, representing the white man’s USA, who don’t resemble the Black kids on the Disney Channel — but instead look like they walked out of Death Row Records. They’ll have too win in a certain fashion, pass-the-ball enough, none of that “one-on-one crap Jackson,” play defense and dive for a lot of balls…

As if hustling and team-work are an exclusive trait of the White player. See, they don’t dig, that I dig – what they’re shoveling. I understand the innuendo, I detect and perceive the hidden insult, and I’m not going to let it walk by.

I’m not about to concede that there’s but one way to play the game of Basketball. Bob Cousy’s Celtics, pre Russell, would have found the Black ballers of the day, who played with a different style, taste and feel… formidable competition.

There are multiple ways to skin a cat. There will be a Vick-like QB, hopefully Vick himself, who’ll redefine how the quarterback position is played, and thus will alter the game. That change will be derived by ….angry White dudes, who’ll turn their backs on a game they’ve played all their lives…because of skin color.

Honestly, at any point, a Black Olympiad could cross the line, either by saying something irrelevant but colorful, celebrate in a manner which displeases some cat in Simi Valley or LA (Lower Alabama), and these Archie Bunker clones will turn on those colored Boys. And, god forbid a Black Athlete says something relevant –speaks out against Little Lord Flat Bushes war in Iraq, or utter’s the truth about China, about Wall Street’s trading buddy’s version of Lite Communism…

Now, one could be wrong, and I could be that one, but it appears this country has issues with Black men in general, and assertive Black men in particular. Assertive -haters see that trait as aggressive.

I see Kobe Bryant or the NFL’s Donovan McNabb as I see Senator Obama; sure-of-themselves Alpha Males. More White people than you can phantom, see them as cocky, snobbish and pugnacious…uppity.

Least any of us forget, this nation has historically despised the Jack Johnson and Muhammad Ali make and model of Black sportsmen.

Go figure…

But it burns my ass that this nation is capable of turning its back on Black American athletes because ” they played too much street ball”, in their guesstamation…., or fans who don’t like the fisting over handshakes. The guy who couldn’t make the team … Who got cut, who’s-got-a-bone-to-pick with….Black guys.

You know, the average sports journalist in newsrooms across this country.

I was on vacation a few months ago in Yosemite National Park and Kings Canyon, home of the mighty Sequoia trees and I learned the Army regiments which constituted Buffalo Soldiers, who saved the asses of White settlers/invaders during the Indian Wars, and who saved Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders asses at San Juan Hill in the Spanish-American war of 1898….. were the same men who built the roads and buildings in both parks, and kept-the-peace before there was a national Park Service and the Park Rangers which came with the department.

These men received less pay, worse gear and the hardest of assignments, performed like the gallant men they were – and were continued to be treated like… niggers by the very folk they were helping and saving.

Their treatment, this form of disrespect and instant betrayal is the identical reaction we see with the white fan; one second ” look at our boy run” next minute – “that boy’s just to damn uppity for me, I’m gonna be root’in for the Russians.”

Race and cultural trump flag and motherland in the minds of America’s Heartland.

German POW’s during WWII, held here in Colorado Prison camps were treated with more respect and decency than the local Black and Mexican American citizens, who had loved ones fighting overseas to defend that America of 1944.

Don’t you find it a little unsettling that a nation which will throw you a ticker-tape parade in New York, NewYork, (so nice, they named it twice) will, if you – Le Jermaine, step-out-line – maybe do a little dance after you break the backboard glass, a little too much fist pumping…. they may actually not cheer for you – but will instead root for your opposition.

This rejection is about envy and some form of embedded hostility…. which has breed mass resentment across this land, with white males specifically, who begrudge the success the Black athlete attains, the Black politician, businessman, butcher, baker or computer chip maker attain.

This is about how the WASP establishment wants to control the face and image of America. And punishing anyone who’ll not conform, tote and tout the conservative company line.