Monday, March 24, 2014

Maher's Moment

Well, it is time for me to add my two cents and you all know how I like to do that! There has been uproar over Bill Maher’s twitter assertion that March Madness is “a stirring reminder of what America was founded on: making tons of money off the labor of unpaid black people”.  What is the problem with the statement and why are people hot under the collars? Well, first of all, those individuals that profit off the games, etc. do not want the truth to be known. God forbid we actually become conscious of reality and begin to pull away our support. The guys work tremendously hard and do not earn one red cent. Number two, the college years of playing allow for those players to be showcased in a way that could potentially change their lives forever, for instance, many of our now NBA superstars (Carmelo Anthony, Dewayne Wade, Derrick Rose, Deron Williams, Kemba Walker, etc.) were once players in March Madness. Lastly, whether the players are motivated by exposure and hopes of being in the NBA draft or not, no one makes them play. Yes, people are profiting and have done so for years, but the stark difference in this situation is that it is not forced. No one is threatening their lives (that we are aware of ). Maher makes a valid point. The NCAA makes a millions if not billions of dollars off the blood, sweat, tears, (and ticket sales) of these athletes. According to Department of Education, men and women sports generated $12.6 billion in 2011. Which brings me back to the point—was Maher wrong in his conclusion? I think in the broad overview of the situation, he was right. But, are we not all partaking in the “exploitation”?  There are much more sinister events and injustices occurring daily and for us to give so much attention to Maher and what he says are a waste of time and energy. Maher is doing what he does best-speaking his mind. There is much to be concerned about but this is not it. What about those working on the new age plantation AKA prison? What about our youth who are locked up at ages as young as 12 with grown men only to be abused and scarred for life? What about the gun violence that continues to ravish our communities? What about the lack of pride in our women? What about the poor educational infrastructure? Is this worth an argument? You make the call.

One Love,
Andréa