We’ll get to the NBA dunk of Trump momentarily.
Up until now, Adam has handled race-based, concerning African-Americans, political issues with aplomb.
Actually Silver demolishes, not dribbles, when it comes to racism against blacks. When NBA owner, come on down, Donald Sterling - spoke racially and odiously off the cuff privately to V. Stiviano about black people, well, Adam, in only his 88th day as commissioner, atomized Donald with a jolly good ban of him from the NBA - for LIFE - and tacked on a 2.5 million dollar fine for good measure – based on this one incident only.
Power, however, that was lauded by NBA icons Charles Barclay, Kenny “The Jet” Smith, and Shaquille O’Neal, in hearing of Silver’s slam dunk of Sterling.
Power. Put to proper use.
Perhaps, however, instead of targeting President Trump, Silver, who looks EXACTLY like the farmer carrying the pitchfork in the American Gothic House painting, should use that power, as a white guy, to resign and let a female black take his job. Or let Mark Tatum, a black deputy commissioner vie for his spot. Apparently blacks in NBA management are almost as low numerically as are Asians playing in the NBA, although blacks, Shaquille O’Neal and David Robinson, do hold team-ownership positions in the league, albeit in piddly amounts. Robinson has 1.88% in the San Antonio Spurs while O’Neal has 2-4% with the Sacramento Kings.
Or Silver, do a double. Step down, but before you do, arbitrarily set quotas for Asians to start on NBA squads.
So you plead for blacks in a league replete with them against The Donald whose Trumpian Empire in his casinos and hotels had diverse staffs. Yet your understanding of presidential player development is nil. Think basketball player’s development. A performer, new to the job, doesn’t hit his, or her, stride for many months, maybe a couple of years – at least. Yet you want your brood to carp and castigate against The Donald in, what, his three-some months of tenure?
And hasn’t Silver seen what Colin Kaepernick’s politics has done to NFL fan attendance? Does he want the NBA to go all political? With the country evenly split between left wing lunatics and right wing wackos, no matter what stance on the issue of the day the NBA takes, will piss off half the populace. (One fortunate fact is that the NBA mandates players to stand for the anthem.)
Oops, a bit late. The NBA has gone over-the-top-and-below-the-belt political, deciding it didn’t like North Carolina’s law(s) on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people, believing them discriminatory – so Charlotte won’t get the All-Star game in February. North Carolina Governor, Pat McCrory, said that the people of North Carolina should use washrooms based on their genetic sex. If perception is reality, the NBA looks like it supports boys using girls’ washrooms.
The NBA is fouling out here...
And even if the NBA isn’t going all partisan, its performers of arms-length have. Remember Denasia Lawrence, the singer who did the anthem in a pre-season game? She knelt and opened her jacket to show off a T-shirt extolling Black Lives Matter.
This is a controversial group.
While BLM can’t control its members and can’t be responsible for their biases and thuggery, it has followers that praised the killing of three Baton Rouge police officers. So the NBA, like it or not, is tainted by association to a collective that many, like the Dallas Police Department’s Demetrick Pennie, who is President of the Dallas Fallen Officer Foundation, and who is suing BLM for inciting race riots - feels is racist and anarchist. Pennie is black so it would be hard to construe his motives as skin based...
Now, for sake of argument, let us say the players are right to debate with The Donald and, moreover, that their arguments are completely correct too.
This can play out in a few ways.
First, they make their arguments and Donald listens without reaction. Second, they make their arguments and Donald disagrees with them completely. (This scenario isn’t likely.) Third, he agrees with some of their points, says others need study, and disagrees with the rest.
(((Third-point-A, Donald Trump does whatever Donald Trump does to confound us all once again.)))
Forget Third-point-A for now. For our sanity and safekeeping.
There’s a fourth option. Let’s call this the nuclear option. As we all know by now Trump has broken every conventional political rule in getting himself elected. He just might decide to cancel the tradition of NBA champions visiting the White House because, given his busy schedule - - - although Saturday Night Live has VP Pence handling all the tough stuff - - - why would he want to preside over an event in which he is harangued and lectured? Didn’t he just face such treatment from the mainstream media while electioneering? Why go through it again? What’s in it for him?
But there’s a fifth possibility that might send the NBA-complaining stars back to the bench. Suppose they tout reforms to policing and more community involvement in nurturing wayward kids in gangs to go straight. Now suppose it is the Cleveland Cavaliers that win again in 2017 and Trump listens to the arguments and agrees with the players and volunteers and asks them to go out into the troubled communities to help try to fix things up. For sure LeBron James, with his history of giving back on Akron, will rise to the challenge but will others? And will some doing the caterwauling be shown by Donald’s response to be nothing more than virtue signalers?
What would President Trump, in agreeing to the NBA player pleas be doing? He’d be calling their bluff.