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Are the Pacers too White?

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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby Art Vandelay » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:06 pm

knapplc wrote:
Art Vandelay wrote:What if they have dreads because they are rastafarian? I think the right to grow locks as a religious practice has been upheld a number of times.

Bah. It was a top-of-my-head example. You could have a "deeply held belief" that wearing blue shirts is a holy act, thus making the seemingly innocuous act of not hiring someone for wearing a blue shirt potentially discriminatory.

Let's not quibble over minutiae. It was just an example. ;-)

Wasn't trying to quibble, I'm genuinely curious if that would fall under the federal religious protections and figured you might know.
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby knapplc » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:11 pm

Art Vandelay wrote:Wasn't trying to quibble, I'm genuinely curious if that would fall under the federal religious protections and figured you might know.

It might. In order to show discriminatory intent, the dread-wearing person must show that the alleged discriminator knew they held a religious belief pertaining to dreads and took action that adversely impacted the dread-wearer, and at least some intent must be described.

The issue is that so many people wear dreads these days that it's not inherently a religious act. Tattoos have religious connotations to some people too, but they're not inherently religious in nature. It's completely gray.
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby Tavish » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:11 pm

StlSluggers wrote:Being white, or Dominican, or Jewish, does not impact your athletic ability one bit. Talent, work ethic, mental fortitude, parental genetics, economic surroundings... These things make athletes what they are.

If you truly believe the first sentence then you need to do some more research. Saying a specific race has a genetic predisposition to excel at certain physical tasks is not at all a racist ideal and is pretty well excepted among the scientific community. To be an elite athlete definitely requires more than just the genetics, but saying they don't play a role is just as false.

A good, white basketball player isn't good in spite of being white just the same way that being born black doesn't mean you will have better odds of being able to slam on a regulation rim. Being born white or black might mean that you're socially or economically more likely to pursue certain paths with respect to basketball, but the mere color of your skin does not solely dictate the outcome of that path.

I wasn't claiming that race is solely the determining factor for being a great basketball player, I don't think you will find many that would claim that. I really doubt that the conversation on the show in question was that the Pacers should drop all the white guys on the team and find some random black man off the street because they surely will be better.

The ideal that white basketball players in today's NBA are in one of two molds, the scrappy, hustle player or the great outside shooter, may be a stereotype but that doesn't make it not true. It doesn't mean that they aren't tremendous basketball players, but there is without a doubt in my mind a worthwhile (and non-racist) conversation to be had asking if a team can be successful simply built around those style of players.
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby knapplc » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:13 pm

Tavish wrote:If you truly believe the first sentence then you need to do some more research. Saying a specific race has a genetic predisposition to excel at certain physical tasks is not at all a racist ideal and is pretty well excepted among the scientific community. To be an elite athlete definitely requires more than just the genetics, but saying they don't play a role is just as false.

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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby Tavish » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:17 pm

knapplc wrote:
Tavish wrote:If you truly believe the first sentence then you need to do some more research. Saying a specific race has a genetic predisposition to excel at certain physical tasks is not at all a racist ideal and is pretty well excepted among the scientific community. To be an elite athlete definitely requires more than just the genetics, but saying they don't play a role is just as false.

Jimmy the Greek wants you to get his career back.

I guess its good to know that in the last 20 years we have evolved as a society and can now talk about these sorts of things without it being automatically considered racism...
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby knapplc » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:25 pm

I would like to think you're right, but there are days at the office when I really wonder if we'll ever progress. :-/
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby bigh0rt » Thu Jul 09, 2009 5:27 pm

StlSluggers wrote:
Tavish wrote:
StlSluggers wrote:I think everyone should get upset about this. Besides the double standard, aren't we supposed to be a color-blind society?

Without actually having seen the context of the discussion they were having, there are plenty of legitimate reasons to discuss the topic. Simply talking about black and white doesn't make a conversation racist. The topic in the right context is no different than talking about if a team has too many old players or not enough players that appeal to the target market or so on. Pretty much the only time it becomes a racist conversation is when you put it a racism context, ie the Pacers don't want black players on their team.

A color-blind society is an unrealistic ideal, embracing differences is ultimately a more worthwhile goal.

Being old brings your abilities into question because aging effects everyone. Being locally relevant is an issue of community makeup. Being white, or Dominican, or Jewish, does not impact your athletic ability one bit. Talent, work ethic, mental fortitude, parental genetics, economic surroundings... These things make athletes what they are. A good, white basketball player isn't good in spite of being white just the same way that being born black doesn't mean you will have better odds of being able to slam on a regulation rim. Being born white or black might mean that you're socially or economically more likely to pursue certain paths with respect to basketball, but the mere color of your skin does not solely dictate the outcome of that path.

You're right that simply talking about black and white does not automatically make a conversation racist. That headline, at least at face value, is racist, because it implies that skin color is indicative of athletic ability.

I'll drop the color-blind society discussion. It's a tangent from this one, and I shouldn't have brought it up.

Come on, man. Everybody knows Jews aren't athletic. They're good with money, and film. Duh.
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby Yoda » Thu Jul 09, 2009 5:42 pm

Tavish wrote:Saying a specific race has a genetic predisposition to excel at certain physical tasks is not at all a racist ideal and is pretty well excepted among the scientific community. To be an elite athlete definitely requires more than just the genetics, but saying they don't play a role is just as false.


Race has nothing to do with it though. More to do with socioeconomic and culture.
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby Tavish » Thu Jul 09, 2009 11:24 pm

Yoda wrote:
Tavish wrote:Saying a specific race has a genetic predisposition to excel at certain physical tasks is not at all a racist ideal and is pretty well excepted among the scientific community. To be an elite athlete definitely requires more than just the genetics, but saying they don't play a role is just as false.


Race has nothing to do with it though. More to do with socioeconomic and culture.

Why do you think race has nothing to do with it?
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Re: Are the Pacers too White?

Postby Yoda » Thu Jul 09, 2009 11:41 pm

Tavish wrote:
Yoda wrote:
Tavish wrote:Saying a specific race has a genetic predisposition to excel at certain physical tasks is not at all a racist ideal and is pretty well excepted among the scientific community. To be an elite athlete definitely requires more than just the genetics, but saying they don't play a role is just as false.


Race has nothing to do with it though. More to do with socioeconomic and culture.

Why do you think race has nothing to do with it?


Why do you think race has anything to do with it?
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