Charles Barkley is about as qualified to speak on race as LeBron James is to be Sophia Vergara’sstunt double; as ready as singer K. Michelle is to be U.S. ambassador to Kazakhstan; as Ben Carson is ready to be president. Unfortunately, none of that matters to U.S. media. All that matters is Charles Barkley is 1) famous, and 2), a Black man willing to articulate the sentiment of your average white male conservative who may or may not sound more like a typical white supremacist. So when asked to opine on the latest musings of the former NBA player turned sports analyst and race scholar, I instantly had a greater appreciation for day drinkers.
In response to a radio interview in which he claimed that those who torched buildings in anger in Ferguson are “scumbags,” Sir Charles did yet another interview with CNN’s Brooke Baldwin. There, Barkley argued yet another falsehood: That white cops are not out to shoot Black people because of racism.
First, Barkley explained, “We never discuss race in this country until something bad happens.” He is a Black man and son of the south. When has their ever been a time when America was not bad in terms of its treatment of Black people?
In any event, Barkley added, “Everybody wants to protect their own tribe, whether they are right or wrong.” I imagine this is the part where I’m supposed to feel sad and cue “Why Can’t We Be Friends?” in my head. Pass.
Then Barkley proceeds to prove he is Bill Cosby’s understudy by condemning his own people for the amusement of others:
“We as Black people, we have a lot of crooks. We can’t just wait until something like (the Brown shooting) happens. We have to look at ourselves in the mirror. There is a reason that they racially profile us in the way they do. Sometimes it is wrong, and sometimes it is right.”
Well, there are crooks in every community, only some are prosecuted at higher rates than others. See: white collar criminals, those who brought this country to its knees on Wall Street, and any other crook you can think of that’s white.
Also, there is a reason why Black people are racially profiled: It’s called racism. It’s never right and it’s usually misguided.
If one is serious about solving crime – particularly in poorer communities – treating people as subhuman is not the solution; rather, it is another symptom of what seems to be an incurable disease in America.
Investing in communities is the answer. Having police who actually care about the communities they are policing is another. What Charles Barkley is saying is a bunch of nonsense that only makes sense to him and others who are out of touch –antiquated view-holding somebodies who ought to be quiet and let more informed people speak instead.
Read the rest at NewsOne.