An Ode to LeBron: Post-Script to Game 4 of June 2014

Athlete as Activist in the post-Obama world

Athlete as Activist in the post-Obama world

Just in case some are missing the dialogue between K.P. and I in the comments to the “Game-Maker’s” article, I decided to distill my thoughts Spurred by the very insightful Kushite Prince as a separate piece.

I hold open the hope that the Miami Heat can be the first team in history to win an NBA finals after being in a 3-1 deficit—while knowing what tall hope that is. How epic and fitting would THAT be? Yet, I am steeled against the probable outcome. What is really saddening to me is how so few black people are doing anything but viewing this as a comparison between the basketball greatness of LeBron James and Michael Jordan. So few Heat fans, even, appreciate the Ali-like importance of LeBron James. They cheer only his basketball feats.

It is true that James has not been as straight-forward in his speech against racism as Muhammad Ali or, football great, Jim Brown. But, the racism of James’ time is practiced in a MUCH less straight-forward way. “The Decision” took place when there was a black POTUS. So, I do equate James’ words and, especially his actions, to those of Brown and close to those of Ali. LeBron James’ public stance on Trayvon Martin’s murder and on Donald Sterling are follow-ups to his move to Miami. That move to Miami— including the much maligned “way it was done”—was a defiant refusal to not be as cocky as he was endowed by The Creator just to quell the sexual anxieties of non-black men. And, to add injury to psychic insult to said non-black folk, James married a gorgeous, undeniably black woman. (nod to LBM)

So, win or lose this year or any year, I will always admire what LeBron James has done. And, the admirable way that Bosh and Wade have held up under the heat has not been lost on me either.


15 Responses to “An Ode to LeBron: Post-Script to Game 4 of June 2014”

  1. Yeah I hear you. I just can’t put my finger on it.

  2. CREE-EIGHT Says:

    No, I do not agree with this post. But, what the author is grasping for is what many of us are. It doesn’t add up, this thing. There is a info missing. Let’s remember the fundamentals: If you do not understand racism—what it is and how it works—everything else that you think you understand will only confuse you.

  3. Cree,do you agree with this? Do you think Lebron’s stance on Sterling made him the most powerful I the NBA? I thought LJ was already the most powerful in the Maybe I missed something.

  4. Okay thanks. Good looking out. I wasn’t aware of that. But that’s cool though. I figured you knew

  5. CREE-EIGHT Says:

    Right on, KP. I absolutely knew it was not you. But, others may not. I should make that notation on the program description. This “KP’ goes by the moniker” KP Mensah” on Facebook.

  6. CREE-EIGHT Says:

    Awww man, m1. I thought I replied to this comment weeks ago. I wanted to write the last piece I did on “The Rules on Color.” And, refernce you to it as a response. I see I only did the first part of that. Apologies. In that piece, I am saying that the “black dynamic” on the Spurs is far less than that of the Heat.

  7. @Cree
    I was listening to your radio show on yesterday.I’ve only listened to half the show so far. You may know this already but I just want to be sure. The caller named KP is NOT me. His voice sounds familiar but I’ve never heard that handle before.I assume you probably know my voice by now. But I just wanted to make the clarification. But from what I’ve heard so far i’s a good show. 🙂

  8. @Cree. Neither the Heat or Spurs are missing the Black dynamic.Both teams have predominantly Black players.If you remember the Black/white racial dynamic was the core of the Lakers/Celtics rivalry. Now I could be wrong,but the white/Black dynamic here is due to the mates of the players of the Heat and Spurs. Which I support.

  9. CREE-EIGHT Says:

    m1, which rivalry are you saying is missing the black dynamic?

  10. Maybe the Heat Spurs will be this generations Celtics Lakers. Minus the white black dynamic.

  11. @CREE
    Is it just me…..but this finals wasn’t that exciting to me. The second round games were much more exciting games. The games between the Clippers vs Warriors was great! So was the series between the Clippers and Thunder. Maybe if the Spurs hadn’t beaten them by over 15 points in all their wins. Oh well…..season is over.
    Now that I think about it maybe someone didn’t want LeBron to get three chips in a row. Hmmmm……you never know. You know I believe in conspiracies. I put nothing past these people. Only a few teams have done it. The Lakers and Bulls come to mind.
    Well the Spurs can now celebrate! Duncan and Pop can now give each other a big kiss! 🙂

  12. CREE-EIGHT Says:

    Well, they started out great. Here comes all the criticism because 1 black man can’t beat the whole system.

  13. Thanks Cree. I’m glad you liked the article. Today is the BIG DAY! I haven’t given up yet. I think the Heat will have a good game tonight. Here’s a little inspiration to lift your spirits a bit. Just believe.

  14. CREE-EIGHT Says:

    Yes, indeed, KP. That vigalantee piece on the MJ-LBJ comparison was fabulous. Spot on with my sentiments. Thank you for linking it.

  15. Great post Cree. I’m glad I could help inspire it in some way. I think you make a valid point in the differences between Lebron vs Ali and Jim Brown. The racial climate id much different than it was in the 60’s and 70’s. Ali and Jim Brown dealt with a more in your face type racism back then. This is why many whites call Ali a hero today. Whites will say that the era of segregation(white/colored restrooms) is a thing of the past. Whites realized that they could further the oppression of black people by appearing to be LESS racist.
    By hiring black people in positions of ‘power”,this gives the illusion of progress. This is what I believe Neely Fuller calls showcasing. Barack Obama would have to be the King of Lebron is living in the “post-racial” era. Racism is very much alive today. It has never gone away. It is just really well refined at the moment. This is where Lebron has to be careful. If we have a black President,transracial adoption, interracial marriages, biracial children, black millionaires,black police,black doctors, black movie stars and black athletes—-how can you speak against injustice??? The post-racial era doesn’t allow you to do this. Since we are all “equal” and racism is pretty much nonexistent. That’s why if Lebron speaks out to much he will be labeled an ungrateful black brute. Or a spoiled rich brat who should be thankful that whites allow him to get rich playing basketball. This is how many whites think privately. Black people are supposed to play sports and keep their mouth shut! Don’t say anything political and piss off the mostly white fans. This is why whites love Michael Jordan so much. MJ seems very apathetic when it comes to black issues. His basketball ability can’t be denied. But his backbone seems to be missing when the topic of black struggle comes up. That’s why I put him below Jim Brown and Ali when it comes to great athletes. MJ stands for nothing. Kobe,Tim Duncan,Charles Barkley and Tiger Woods have followed the same route to success. (Sidenote:All non black wives).
    But I think this is where Lebron can really shine and separate himself from MJ. If he doesn’t do it while playing maybe he’ll do after he retires. If he does get involved in the empowerment of black people I think he will surpass MJ in greatness. A friend sent me this article awhile back. It fits perfectly into this discussion. I think you’ll like it Cree.
    Go HEAT!!! Let’s do this tomorrow! It would be a nice Father’s day win. 🙂

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