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Race has nothing to do with it whatsoever

October 7th, 2010

I was just getting over LeBron James leaving Cleveland and taking his talents to South Beach to play for the Miami Heat. 

Tomorrow will be the three-month anniversary (but who’s counting?) of that fateful day when he made his decision on national television to join the Heat. 

But just when I was starting to move on, LeBron James dropped the next bombshell, claiming that he received so much backlash because he was an African-American.

That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. 

LeBron: people don’t hate you because you’re black. They hate you, that’s for sure, but it’s not because you’re black.

Race had nothing to do with it whatsoever. You promised a championship, didn’t deliver, and then quit when it got too hard.

The same people that allegedly hate you for being black were the same people that spent their hard-earned money to buy a #23 jersey. 

They’re the same people that broke open the piggy bank to buy the newest LeBron shoes from Nike and proudly boasted to be a “witness” to seeing you play. You were loved … and you were black.

There are people out there that hate people based on the color of their skin, and that’s unfortunate. But that’s a small percentage of people, and I think the race card gets played too often in sports. 

Rev. Jesse Jackson said Cavs owner Dan Gilbert treated LeBron James like a “runaway slave,” this after Gilbert paid James more than $62 million to play basketball for seven seasons. Nice pay rate.

Even other African-American athletes thought James’ race card was far off.

“It’s like watching a movie,” former NBA great Charles Barkley said during a radio interview last week. “Just when you think it couldn’t get any stupider, it gets more stupid.”

Skin color doesn’t matter. Fans care too much about winning to care about something as insignificant as that. 

Fans in Philadelphia have embraced an African-American that participated in a dog-fighting ring as their new quarterback. Fans have forgiven and now adore African-American Kobe Bryant who had a highly-publicized extramarital affair.

The point is, people don’t care about race. I’m not even sure we really care about behavior. Sins are forgiven the second a fantastic play is made. Michael Vick had seven touchdowns in his first three games, and now black and white people are buying #7 jerseys for their kids. 

We don’t care what color your skin is, we just want to win.