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Tiger Woods gets no love from the Black community, again

At the age of twenty-one, Tiger Woods won the Masters Tournament, and never had the African American community been so excited about golf. Nike built its advertising campaign around this exuberance by producing the “I am Tiger Woods” commercials. Yet not since Mohammed Ali, have African Americans been so ultimately polarized by a sports hero. For a time, Tiger was the shining prince who allowed Blacks to celebrate his achievement, thus reminding the community of other Black figures whose struggles radically changed the perception of what it is to be African American. That time has come and gone.

When he was asked on the Oprah show if it bothered him to be called African American, Tiger answered in the affirmative: “Growing up, I came up with this name: I’m a ‘Cablinasian” (Caucasian-Black-Indian-Asian).

There are those that would argue that as a bi-racial person, it is his right to identify as he chooses. Yet to the Black community, these words symbolized a rejection. Colin Powell responded to Woods commentary by stating, “In America, which I love from the depths of my heart and soul, when you look like me, you’re black.” The perception of Tiger as an outsider solidified when he chose as his wife a White Swedish woman, following in the steps of many male African American celebrities who marry outside of their race.

It was announced last weekend that Tiger got into a car accident. Like most incidents involving celebrities, this quickly became headline news. The paparazzi circled like vultures, sure that there was more to the story than a simple traffic incident. One by one, women stepped forward to allege having extra-marital affairs with Woods. Embarrassing text messages came to light, revealing the extent of Tiger’s lechery. Suddenly, the man that led such a private life found that no amount of begging for privacy would erase his name from the headlines, or from Black blogs.

For many, it was easy to ridicule Tiger. He did, after all, refuse to identify solely as Black. Beyond his message of hope, declaring for the entire world that he is African American bound Blacks to Barack Obama. The kind of relationship that the Black community has with Black leaders and celebrities was something that Tiger failed to understand when he made his fateful statement.

Mr. Cablinasian became an instant punchline as many refused to embrace him in the manner that they had supported stars like R. Kelly and Kobe Bryant. Recently, Tiger jokes became huge on the nationally syndicated Tom Joyner show for the past week. In one parody it was stated, “The question everyone in America wants to ask you is, how many white women does one brother want?”

Not only did Tiger marry outside of his race, but the women he allegedly chose to be unfaithful with were also not exactly Black. Just as Michelle Obama adds to Barack’s identity as a Black man in the eyes of the community, Elin, Tiger’s wife, detracts from it. Tired of being passed over, Black women reacted with glee to Tiger’s marital woes.

A commenter on the blog Black Voices wrote:

“As far as I’m concerned, Tiger Woods is just one of the many OREO (cookie) out there, who had to lose himself to gain acceptance in the world that he’s working so hard to exist in. People do have choices in whom they choose but from the beginning of time…and based on his own comments during interviews…Tiger doesn’t know who he truly is. Hence, his ‘all white’ choices.”

On the popular Black blog Bossip, the women that he is alleged to have had affairs with were routinely described as “ho’s” and “bitches.” One commenter stated:

“I GUESS WHITE AINT ALWAYS RIGHT IS IT TIGER. WOW THIS IS GREAT. I HAVE NOT LIKED TIGER WOODS EVER SINCE HE DENIED HE WAS BLACK SO I DON’T CARE WHAT HAPPENS TO HIS SELL OUT *****. I HOPE THERE ARE MORE WHITE HOES THAT COME OUT ON HIM”.

Whom Tiger chooses to engage in sex with should be a personal matter, but his celebrity and his racial identity have caused this to be about more than infidelity. The Black community is not interested in the actual infidelity as much as it is interested in Woods’ complex personal identification. Blackness is very much a disciplined identity with a complex set of behaviours that are necessary for inclusion. When Tiger Woods identified as something else, he broke one of the most sacred rules: Black solidarity at all costs.

He would have been forgiven for the White wife — many Black celebrities have been in interracial marriages — but not fully owning a Black identity is unforgivable for many who must still struggle with racism. Even though he is clearly bi-racial the “one drop rule” still applies in the case of men like Woods, whose Black genes are undeniable. Tiger’s marriage may or may not withstand his dalliances, but what is certain is that his reputation in the Black community has suffered yet another blow.

23 thoughts on “Tiger Woods gets no love from the Black community, again

  1. You seem to focus a lot on the one aspect of Tiger’s life – the day he defined Cablinasian – while ignoring his life over the rest of the years since. Tiger Woods has singlehandedly brought many Blacks to golf and many Blacks are still interested in the sport only as a function of how well Tiger is playing.

    One thing you seem to be missing in all of this is the amount of self-criticism Black America does to itself, like many did with Kobe Bryant when he went through his rape charges. It didn’t mean that the Black community was “turning” on Kobe, but we were willing to call a spade a spade. And cheating on his wife is an action that doesn’t deserve sympathy. Some are defending him and/or saying that they still like him as an athlete.

    You point out two blogs that criticize Tiger and actually comment on personal dislike of the man, but these two blogs do not speak for the Black race. I could have just as easily pointed out The Black Snob (http://blacksnob.com/snob_blog/2009/12/3/tiger-has-a-big-ego-cant-stand-his-big-ego-but-i-love-how-he.html) who stated “I love Tiger Woods”.

  2. Oh please Renee. You routinely talk about internalized racism and it is clear Tiger has one of the worst cases ever to see the light of day. Maybe as a fellow person in an interracial relationship you sympathize, but there is a difference between colorblindness in relationships and plain old self hatred. Tiger has repeatedly denied any affinity to the Black community. No, we didn’t expect total capitulation, he had after all been raised by his Asian mother and black father, but the truth is he became convinced him that black was less than and minimized it to further his acceptance. Have you ever seen him with any blacks period? He knew the passport to acceptance was to disown and disavow any connection to blackness. You spoke of this same phenomenon in “Who will love the black child?” Now granted, Tiger wasn’t the only one wrong in this situation, but don’t let that blind you to the facts. He has no right to expect any support from a community he has so openly distanced himself from.

  3. I am not sure that Tiger Woods reject the Black community or has contempt for Afro and Asian women. He is an offspring of both races.
    The diatribe about his mistresses is an ad hominen fallacy; [guilt / honor by association] depending on the premises.
    He might have a preference for blonde but this is not a sacrilege to the Afro and the Asian communities. He has a right to pick the woman he likes without third party interferences.

    Now let’s speculating as to why all the women on the so called “scandal” are Caucasians.
    The PGA of America has 28,000 members only 145 are Afro-American; that represent less than one percent of Afro-American in golf. Golf is predominantly a Caucasian oriented sport. This implies that the chance for him to meet an Afro-American woman in a golf environment is negligible or almost nil; consequently, the women he met in golf setting are Caucasian.

    His indulgence in profligate amours should not be a surprise. Scientific observation suggests that polygamy seem to be prevalent throughout the animal kingdom–from birds to Homo sapiens; monogamy tends to be a rarity in nature. This is a biological reality. If you have any doubts about it check the history of: Sumerian, Babylonia, Phoenician, China, Egypt, ancient Greece, Roman Empire, Byzantine, Elizabethan times, the French, The Russian, and modern day America. Monogamy started in Western Europe and it was artificially imposed to several countries in the West for economic reason. To conclude: Jacqueline Kennedy said: “I do not think there are any men who are faithful to their wives.”

  4. Did anyone notice that print media is making his image darker? Let his fellow Cablinasians come out and support him. Clearly, he is a bit immature, selfish and just plain stupid to be sleeping around risking his own health, his spouse health, and not caring about the consequences. He is in dire need of some kind of counseling, because it appears he has lost his soul.

  5. Tiger always be proud of who you are, never ever turn and disown the black community. By doing so you are disowning your family. We as African Americans realize our very rich and powerful athletes and celebs occassionally mess up. However we will stand by you and defend you because you are us, and we are you. Afterall, white Americans defend their own …they have a national media outlet to do so. Now about these white bitches, yeah you messed up, because your risk your life, and your wife’s life, and that is super disgusting. I am glad none of the whores were black!

  6. Tiger Woods is nothing but an **uncle Tom** I hope some more white hoes come to light, and take all yer money & the white bitch divorce ya ass and take half to her next husband who will be WHITE and american HA HA, oh I AM LOVING THIS!!!! TIGER you on yer own buddy!…we’ll see what color you are now!

  7. It may not be fair nor may it be correct. But I’m glad Tiger is going through what he is. I’m sure he will soon discover just how black he really is.

    I’m sure his father has turnover at least 10 times in his grave, over the ignorance, selfishness and down-right ‘bitchassness’ he son has displayed. I’m sure his mother and other who care about him are ashamed and disgrace his immature actions. I for one, am so glad that Tiger has decided not to identify with the African American community. One less black-eye thrown by an already polarized society.

  8. tiger tiger tiger….who do you turn to now…who got your back?coz it definately aint the caucasians or the asians and it sure aint the blacks… as a sista i really dont care who a black man marries, but if he rejects his race then i dont give a flack what happens to his azz… tiger , time to get some of your white folks to help you out coz al sharpton sure aint coming out for your sellout azz…

  9. I have to co sign with the author of this wonderful piece.
    Woods can call himself whatever he wants but it clear to see the white media are demonizing Woods as a sexual predator. In fact, a UK newspaper called Woods that word this week!

    Woods is facing a lot of racism and sexism. He has been stereotyped as a sexual beast a black man with a hunger for white women.

    The mainstream white media are bashing Woods BECAUSE he had sexual relationships with white women. Woods sought out white acceptance trying to dimnish his black heritage. However, Woods looks like a fool the man has dark skin he was never seen as white. Woods thought if he tried to distance himself from BLACK he would OBTAIN WHITE ACCEPTANCE. The white media have sympathy for his white wife Elin and she’s not even American! Woods has learned the hard way it’s not right the way the press are treating him. However, the punishment he is receiving is just cruel and really pernicious.

  10. Let this be a lesson to ALL BLACK MEN who think that white is right!!! A woman is a woman…regardless of her race…no woman likes to be cheated on and hurt to this extent. This white lady has put all of this Bulls*&t about white women being more passive and understanding to a halt. As a black female, I am glad that Tiger is going through what he is going through. Maybe now he can look beyond the skin color of his next mate and choose someone that will have his back. To all you Tiger-wannabe’s understand this…white ain’t always right but black will always have your back!!!

  11. Michael Jackson bleached his self white and claimed that he fathered the white children he bought and tricked white women out of, was a pervert and manipulated people, practically hated his Father and brothers. what does the black community say about Michael, Oh we love Michael , he can do no wrong. So at least tiger woods didn’t bleach his skin white. This one drop of blood rule for black people is dumb and stupid. And every dark skinned people are not Black afro descent. Middle Eastern people are dark skinned , but are not black. spanish , hawaii people etc. Black afro people do not own the color hue. Even poor white people are black and have black lungs , just go up in the coal mine country anybody can be black as coal.

  12. Oh yeah one more thing, Michael Jackson never dated women of his race and with all of his plastic surgery he obvious did not want to be identified with his own race. Man in the mirror.

  13. Tiger wood should just make himself like Jackson since he is afrait of the forken whites.such a person should not be seen in a black community.

  14. To preface this, I am a black man.

    I have heard NO ONE confront this point at all when faced with it, and I would like an answer from the (black) people who want to pass judgement on him.

    Tiger likes Golf. Tiger is of mixed heritage. Tiger has what would be defined by many an “atypical” accent.

    Coming up in a black community or around other black peers would be a perfect storm for ridicule and bullying from them. Girls his age would be uninterested and even join in on the bullying because they wouldn’t want to be associated with a “nerdy kid trying to be white”. Chances are that Tiger was sold out by black people LONG before black people believe Tiger sold them out.

    As a people, Black Americans have made a prison out of identity. You aren’t allowed to like British Pop, Heavy Metal, Ice Hockey, or anything that doesn’t have a predominantly black presence or you are “trying to be white”. Accents that deviate from the “norm” will be ridiculed.

    Any person, regardless of race, will take a path of least resistance. Only a truly masochistic person would keep trying to find acceptance and happiness amongst a group of people that have made it clear they do NOT want them.

    Tiger is a product of his environment…an environment the black people that attack him for his life choices and preference of company refuse to own up to for their part in the shaping of that environment because they want their cake and to be able to eat it too.

  15. I admire Tiger Woods for refusing to call himself black. He is honest in this as HE IS NOT BLACK! He is 50% Asian, 25% white, and 25% black. He is strong enough to stand up to all you race-hustler who are on the constant scrounge for anyone famous who might be construed to be black, such as the half-white pathethic Obama.

  16. Poor Tiger woods he is so lost in his identity that it’s sad, he’s in denial of his identity and wants to be accepted by those he feels are better than himself. It’s quite obvious that he feels being african american is not the poplar race to be, so he chooses to identify with the white race. Tiger look in the mirror.

  17. Tiger Woods pretty much told the truth on the Oprah show. Then, most black people flipped.

    Tiger Woods is a grown man. He can make his own choices and choose which woman he wants. Maybe he is more attracted to white women than he is to other women. He did not really pick Asian, Hispanic, etc. women.

    I may not be a fan of Tiger Woods. But, I just see him as a man who just wants to be who he is and live his wife the way he wants. He does not need other people (whether they are black, white, etc.) harassing, judging, accusing, and threatening him.

  18. I think Charles Barkley and Snoop Dogg exemplified it best when they publicly revealed their personal DNA test results on the George Hernandez Show, showing BOTH to be of mixed – Black, Native, & White – ancestry. (Surprisingly the lighter complexioned Barkley has more Sub-Saharan African blood than Snoop…though he also has more White blood. Snoop has a higher% of Native American) The point of the matter is: the (so called)“Black” American community as a whole IS MIXED. That’s what happens when one racial group is allowed to own another for hundreds of years, HELLO. And, when the children fathered by White slave masters to Black slave women were BORN INTO SLAVERY, well, that pretty well established who’s White and who’s NOT WHITE. One can call it the name of his choice…but this “rose” has been defined, it is a point of official record (American History) what this thing is.

    Another thing that happens is a variety of stigmas and complexes within the social order of the NOT-WHITE people, with feelings of inferiority being attached according to one’s closer proximity to Black – and likewise higher esteem being attributed to being closer to White. However, the Black community has found a source of empowerment in proudly embracing it‘s “Blackness,” proclaiming Black as beautiful – thereby rejecting the oppressive assertion of “Whiteness” (something unattainable to it) as the inherently ultimate superior, to be looked upon with supreme and eternal envy… Unfortunately Tiger – for whatever reason, it doesn’t matter which – is not among those “empowered” Black people .

  19. I don’t care what language you speak,what country you’re from,or what other races you’re mixed with, if your skin is black, you’re black!!! PERIOD!!!!!

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