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Winter Olympics: why Team USA is nearly white as snow

Posted on Friday, February 12th, 2010 at 5:17 pm

Author: Feature Writer

Gc contributor: Monica Roberts

With the Vancouver Games starting today and it also being Black History month, I have pondered why we haven’t had as many excellent African-American winter Olympians as we consistently produce for the Summer Games. The Olympics, after all, mean a lot to me.

Whether they take place in the summer or winter, I’m parked in front of the television during that fortnight of competition. I get excited when I see the torch lighting ceremony happen in Greece and eagerly count the days down to the opening ceremonies in the host nation. I get a little emotional when the closing ceremonies occur and see the flame extinguished until the next Olympiad.

There are many reasons why I love the Olympics. For that two to three week period the Games are occurring we are literally one planet cheering the athletes no matter what nation they are from.

It’s unpredictable and controversial as times. Just ask the Russians and Americans about the 1980 ‘Miracle on Ice’ or the 1972 USA-USSR basketball gold medal game in Munich. The Canadians, meanwhile, are still angry about Jamie Sale and David Pelletier being robbed of an 2002 pairs figure skating gold medal by shady judging.

You never know who the star athlete of that particular Games may be, which is why we have all been delighted by Michael Phelps in 2008, Nadia Comaneci in 1984, and Jean-Claude Killy in 1968.

The games are always a perfect blend of pageantry, history, high level sporting achievement, heartbreaking defeats, upsets, victory and high stakes drama all played out on an international athletic stage.

African-Americans have a long and distinguished history in Summer Games competition dating back to the 1904 St. Louis Games. George Poage not only was the first African-American competitor, he took two bronze medals in the 200m the 400m hurdles.

From Jesse Owens to Flo Jo to the Dream Team, it’s a long and proud history of sterling athletic achievement. But when it comes to the Winter Games, we’ve been invisible.

The Winter Olympics were first held in Chamonix, France, in 1924. It wasn’t until the 1980 Lake Placid Games that Willie Davenport and Jeff Gadley became the first African Americans ever to qualify for a US winter Olympic team. Davenport and Gadley were members of the USA 4 man bobsled team that finished 12th.

Davenport stated in a February 21, 1980 JET magazine interview,

“There is myth in this country that Blacks can’t make the American winter Olympic team. Jeff and I proved this to be wrong and that you don’t have to be rich and white to make it.”

The interesting footnote to this piece of sporting Black history is that Davenport was the 1968 gold medalist and 1972 bronze medalist in the 110m hurdles. He was also a five time Summer Olympian dating back to the 1964 Tokyo Games.

The first African-American Winter Games medalist was Dr. Debi Thomas, who won a bronze medal in the 1988 figure skating competition in Calgary. The first African-American winter gold medalist was Vonetta Flowers, who won it while competing in the 2 woman bobsled with Jill Bakken during the 2002 Salt Lake City Games.

Four years later, in Torino, speedskater Shani Davis became the first African-American male ever to win a winter Olympic gold medal and the first to win an individual event Winter Olympic gold medal when he won the 1000m.

So why the imbalance of African-Americans in Winter and Summer Games participation?

There are several things factoring into the 84 year gap between the first medals awarded to African-American participants in the summer and winter Games.

One of the first is exposure. Many of the winter sports contested in the Olympics are dominated by Europeans and don’t get the type of television coverage in the States as they get overseas. If it’s not covered on TV in the States, that particular sport is virtually invisible to the casual US sports fan.

As Tiger Woods, Peter Westbrook and the Williams sisters have proven, if you see yourself represented on the screen in a non-traditional sport, kids will gravitate to it. There’s a wave of African American kids participating in golf, fencing and tennis as a result of the trailblazing efforts of those athletes. Since Shani Davis’ 2006 gold medal winning appearance in Torino, speedskating has witnessed an uptick in participation by African American kids wanting to be like Shani.

Contrary to Willie Davenport’s 1980 statement, money matters in making a winter Olympics team. Most winter sports require expensive outlays for equipment, training, and coaching. They also require access to facilities that are hundreds or thousands of miles from the urban areas where most African-Americans live.

For example, if an African-American child wants to become a world class luger, there are only two Olympic and World Cup class luge tracks in the United States, and they are on opposite ends of the country in Lake Placid, NY and Park City, UT.

If you add Canada to the mix, the number doubles to four with tracks in Calgary, AB and the one in which the 2010 Olympic luge competition will take place in Whistler, BC.

But for those kids that dream of achieving Olympic glory in a winter setting, we can’t underestimate the determination of people fighting to make their dreams become a reality.

They will do whatever it takes to make it happen, and hopefully I’ll get a chance to see more African-descended winter Olympians standing on victory platforms in Vancouver and during future Olympic Games.

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  1. I don’t know why that last post came out funny, but I am a 2010 Winter Olympian for the US in women’s bobsled. There are a few others that the media is missing, including one of the men on the US bobsled team, Chuck Berkley. There aren’t many of us, but there is some representation at the games.

  2. Hasn’t anyone noticed that this article is blatantly racist?

    First, look at the title: “Winter Olympics: why Team USA is nearly white as snow.” Can anyone actually say that this title is not offensive to white people? If it is not acceptable to comment on shades of darkness of black people’s skin, then why is it acceptable to comment on shades of paleness of white people’s skin?

    Second, one’s race or skin color has nothing to do with one’s abilities. Why does the author of this article focuses so much attention on racial make-up of Team USA and so little attention on the abilities of each individual athlete? These people have worked incredibly hard to make the team and things like physical effort and determination are hardly a function of race. Doesn’t the author of this article insult the athletes by ignoring their abilities (which is the most important thing) and instead focusing on their skin color (the least important thing)?

    Third, why not also advocate more Asians and Hispanics in winter sports? What makes the author think that European-Americans and African-Americans are in any way better than Asian-Americans or Hispanic-Americans?

    Fourth, conclusion along the lines of “…and hopefully I’ll get a chance to see more African-descended winter Olympians…” is absolutely wrong. A person should choose his/her calling in life solely based on what they are passionate about as human beings and not based on race. A white person should not desire to go into basketball because a basketball team looks darker than charred coal and a black person should not desire to become a luger because a luger team looks whiter than snow. The notion that one should join an occupation based on one’s race/skin color for the purpose of “improving” racial make-up in that occupation is blatantly racist. Only a person with no personal passion for anything can dwell so much on race in sports, because an actual athlete is more focused on the awesome demands of training which leaves little time for racial nonsense.

    I think the author should withdraw this article in shame. The fact that such blatantly racist material gets posted on this site doesn’t say a whole lot about competence of this site’s editorial staff.

    Elana Meyers, don’t you feel insulted that so much emphasis is placed on your race and so little emphasis is placed on your personal athletic abilities? Doesn’t the best person win in sports regardless of race?

  3. The best person competing does win in sports regardless of race. I think the point of the article was to point out that the US Winter Olympics Team does not look like America and to offer the average person who notices that an explanation as to why that is… Especially when contrasted to the Summer Team. To be offended by that would seem a waste of time to me. Everyone who can see notices skin color. How one responds to it as a person in the majority/minority is what makes racisim exist.

  4. ACrod, if you say that “the best person competing does win in sports regardless of race” then why does it matter at all how the Team USA looks? What do looks have to do with performance? From latest reports I see that Team USA this winter is leading all other teams by the number of medals it wins. To the average person that’s the most significant factor and an average person won’t waste even a second of his/her time to think about what the team looks like, let alone compare the looks of winter vs. summer teams, let alone based on racial characteristics. Why? Because race just isn’t a factor in sports or any other field of human endeavor. Now, to make it a factor is precisely what racism is. Whether one is in racial majority or minority has nothing to do with it since minority racism is just as evil as majority racism. To go beyond making it a factor and blow it up into an article with blatantly racist title – that’s flaming racism, and to condone it and/or make excuses for it – that’s blatant cowardice.

  5. Winter Olympics: the olympics where white people can achieve in sports that black people cant afford to do

  6. Jason, I think most black people will take offense with your comment, considering that you are giving them so little credit. The idea that black people as a group are somehow incapable is a fantasy.

  7. What makes you think they can’t afford them? That’s what the word “incapable” in my last post was referring to. You think well-paying jobs are somehow out of the reach of black people?

  8. Mark, spoken like someone wwallowing in vanilla flavored privilege.

    racism equals prejudice plus power.

    I’m simply pointing out the reasons why the winter Olympics teams are dominated by whites, as opposed to the more multiethnic Summer Olympics teams.

    And money and exposure to those winter sports is an issue if you want to excel enough to make an Olympic team.

  9. “Vanilla flavored privilege”? What exactly does that mean? Please clarify.

    And you don’t think that a term like that is racist??? It qualifies as racism even according to your own definition of “prejudice plus power.” You show your prejudice by attributing my views to what you assume is my race without first getting to know me as a human being and finding out the reasons for my views, and thank goodness that power is only a figment of your wishful imagination at this point.

    Do you always assume that any half-way successful person is “someone wallowing in vanilla flavored privilege”? Has it never occurred to you that achievement and success is something that is available to all who care to pursue it?

    Why do you spend so much time thinking about why winter Olympic team is “dominated” by whites? Why does it matter what athletes’ skin color is if they perform superbly?

    From the type of things you say it seems like you are the type of person who looks at the world solely through the prism of race. You obviously don’t care about individual achievement, and I am beginning to suspect that this incredible amount of racist contemplation that you are doing is just a crutch for you to cover up your own loserdom. When Monica Roberts was a child she probably told herself “I am a failure; I am not good at anything” and eventually telling herself that grew so painful that she just couldn’t help herself reaching for the racist crutches along the lines of “It’s those damn rich white folks! I hate them!” And here you are today still doing that and still a loser.

    Ironically, while you pretend to root for the black people you show your utter contempt for them by claiming that they are somehow lacking in money and exposure. Reality check: money and exposure is accessible to anyone who cares to work for it. Just because you are a loser, do not assume that everyone else is just because they happen to be same race as you.

  10. Well – take sprinting for example. That is an inexpensive sport. Running is free. Who dominates that?

    Snowboarding… now theres a sport that requires some cash! Monica knows what i’m talking about – those with that vanillacash i’d say.

  11. So, Jason, your definition of cash is “something that white people have a lot of”? Gee, I’d say this line of thinking betrays your complete and utter ignorance of what wealth is, let alone of ways in which it can be earned. What grounds do you have to assume that black people are as ignorant as you are?

    If you are saying that black people are good in sports but not in highly compensated professions or business, how is this different from the claim of white racists that black people are only good for physical work because they have no brains? You have simply internalized that premise. It’s rather obvious that Monica is an unrepentant flaming racist. At first I thought that she is of the black supremacist type. I no longer think that’s the case. A black supremacist would never admit that there is something that black people can’t do. Instead of whining about “vanillacash” he would be actively raising this cash for the cause from the general public in that worst case scenario that he isn’t able to make this money himself. But you and Monica are just confused white supremacy disadherents – in other words, you take at face value and believe in everything that white supremacy preaches but react angrily because you don’t want what you think is true to be true. It’s funny how the joke is on you.

  12. Ahem excuse me MARK who says “black people are only good for physical work because they have no brains”… They obviously can do heaps of things that they have ACCESS to, I will touch on this further in a minute. No-one is saying anything about supremacy apart from supremacy in the SPORT – I think MONICAS was saying that, much like myself, that it is hard for the black person to access these winter sports because of the number of ‘white’ people dominating because they PRACTICE and have ACCESS to the sport.

  13. Jason, it is YOUR claim that “black people are only good for physical work because they have no brains.” You seem to be under impression that black people can dominate in SPORT, but can’t dominate in BUSINESS. Therefore, my question to you: why do you think that black people are incapable of succeeding in BUSINESS so that they can earn enough money to gain ACCESS to PRACTICE SPORT?

    To clarify things for you further: if black people can succeed in business and professions just as well as non-blacks, then they obviously have enough money to practice any sport they choose to and the primary thesis of this article falls apart; if you want to continue to claim that the thesis is valid then you also have to claim that black people are inferior to non-blacks and cannot succeed in professions and business – and since success in professions and business is determined strictly by possession of a quality brain then you also have to claim that black people have no brains. Do you understand now the dilemma you are facing? Either way you go you are a racist, and you got yourself into this sort of trouble because you chose to make race a factor in sports. My advice: do not make a factor something that is completely irrelevant because your thinking process will go downhill from that point forward. That’s precisely why racism is evil: it clouds your thinking process, which in turn prevents you from living a happy life. That’s why racism is the creed of the stupid and it will stupify those who delve into it.

  14. Just saying that some people (we know who) for WHATEVER reason (I think we know the reason) aren’t playing the sports that require that expensive infrastructure, ski slopes, and ice arenas, and winter lodges.

    It seems like a pretty loose connection to this and your saying that “black people are only good for physical work because they have no brains.” (I would argue that they in FACT are), and who says that physical work wont earn you money? enough money to go on a skiing holiday?!

  15. Pardon me- error above. 2nd Paragraph should read:

    It seems like a pretty loose connection to this and your saying that “black people are only good for physical work because they have no brains.” (I would argue that they in FACT have got brains), and who says that physical work wont earn you money? enough money to go on a skiing holiday?!

  16. Well, no, the connection is not loose; it is very straight-forward:
    -If you have brains then you can use those brains to get education and a well-paying job or start your own business.
    -The money that you earn from a job or a business is the money that you can invest in expensive infrastructure, ski slopes, ice arenas, winter lodges, and god-knows what else.
    Therefore, you are being incredibly evasive and refuse to answer my question, which I will now repeat for the 3rd time: what makes you think that black people aren’t capable of earning the money necessary to participate in winter sports?

    Using the terms like “some people (we know who)” and “WHATEVER reason (I think we know the reason)” just underscores your evasiveness. I suspect the reason you are so incredibly evasive is that you fully realize the implications of actually answering the question I pose – either Monica’s article is a figment of her racist imagination or you have to claim that black people are too stupid to make money, which would also be racist. Your evasiveness is simply a refusal to face the facts.

    I don’t play basketball. Why? Because I prefer computer programming. I would laugh if some fool was coming up with racist theories along the lines of “Mark doesn’t play basketball because black people have conspired to keep him out.” I suspect that’s what black people do (just laugh) when they read Monica’s racist rant/conspiracy theory and your defense of it.

  17. What makes me think that black people aren’t capable of earning the money necessary to participate in winter sports?
    The lack of black people competing. Which leads to the conclusion that these sports aren’t the type of sports that black people participate and excel in. Which begs the question: if they are not participating in them, why not? Perhaps they don’t have the MONEY to do so. Why would these people be investing their money in infrastructure, ski slopes, ice arenas, winter lodges and the like, when they have much better things to be spending their money on?

    Computer Programming isn’t a sport. Nor is it an Olympic sport. So I don’t know why you’d make that connection, but I can tell you this: Perhaps you don’t play basketball, not “because black people have conspired to keep (you) out”, but because you find computer programming easier to get into. You obviously own/ have access to a computer and associated tools, and find it accessible.

    Now – take the very same analogy of computer programming and basketball, and apply it to, say, sprinting and luge. Black people may prefer sprinting because the luge is an ‘inaccessible’ sport, because they don’t have the access to luge, the luge run, associated infrastructure and equipment, much like you find basketball ‘inaccessible’. See the connection?

    You have introduced a few new topics into your debate – perhaps these ‘ideas’ stem from…paranoia? I don’t know, I’m no expert on these matters, but I certainly would not believe that there is any conspiracy to keep black people out of winter sports! I certainly don’t know why you would believe that! they’re doing a good enough job of that themselves.

  18. Well, your whole notion that people choose their passion in life based on what they can “access” is laughable. It sounds like something along the lines of “Gee, I really like medicine but because I find medicine hard to access I am going to settle for something easier to get into, like waitressing.” Only weak and passionless people think like that, if you can even call it thinking. When a normal person is passionate about medicine, he/she will make sure to do whatever it takes to get into medical school and then become a doctor. It is passion that drives access and not vice versa. From the things you say it sounds like you expect to do no work at all in your life and expect to have everything handed to you on a silver platter, and then whine and blame others when the platter is not forthcoming. Reality check: you build your own life with your own effort and do whatever it takes on your own to realize your dream.

    As I have pointed out many times, money can easily be earned by those who want to earn it. Once again you evade the question of why black people can’t make money. Instead you say something laughable like “perhaps they don’t have the money but perhaps they have much better things to spend their money on.” That’s an obvious logical contradiction. First you complain that black people don’t participate in winter sports and in the next sentence you ask “Why would these people be investing their money in infrastructure, ski slopes, ice arenas, winter lodges and the like?” Is this stupid, or what? It’s like saying “Gee, I really want to go into medicine but why would I spend any money on education when there are better things I can spend my money on?” It sounds pretty stupid.

    You simply refure to think because you want to cling so deperately to the notion that black people should participate in winter sports. Well, why? What if they don’t want to? What if they want to go into computer programming or medicine instead? Right, neither medicine nor computer programming is a sport. But so what? What makes you think that black people should go into sports at all? What if, as you have partially alluded to, they simply have better things to do with their time and money? When you start with the racist notion that black people should go into winter sports because there are “not enough” black people in winter sports you are barking up the wrong tree. As I have pointed out many time already, people choose their field of endeavor based on individual passion and regardless of race. So your whole inquiry along the lines of “the lack of black people competing” is bogus to begin with. My suggestion: think of people as people and not as black people or white people. Then your inquiry becomes “the lack of people competing,” which is total nonsense because there are plenty of people competing. By starting out with a racist question you miss a whole lot of what’s going on in the world.

  19. I’m not saying that they should, I’m saying that they can’t.
    And I think its quite racist of you to say that black people shouldn’t be participating in winter sports. Perhpas, as you say, they lack the passion to achieve in these areas. That’s fine. You dont know what you could achieve in these areas if you arent able to even begin to TRY them out first.
    Oh and guess what: I don’t have to answer your questions, they’re of no concern to me, especially when you continually misinterpret, and misquote what I have written. And I also dont care much for your “suggestions”, you like to ‘suggest’ a lot I think. I suggest you get back to programming your computers and stop dreaming of being a doctor.

  20. Well, you don’t explain why they can’t beyond the bogus claim that they don’t have “vanillacash.” As I have pointed out to you, black people can afford to get into whatever they want to get into because they are fully capable of making money, so your claim is, as I have already said, bogus and racist. And as far as black people lacking passion – I never said that. It is you who is drawing this conclusion from your dogmatic belief that black people can’t get into winter sports – it’s basically one racist claim after another for you.

    As far as who gets to play winter sports, I really don’t care. Whoever wants to do that, they are more than welcome. I am certainly not going to waste my time on racist musings along the lines of “why aren’t there more members of one race than another.” I am quite satisfied with how Winter Olympic Team USA performed in 2010, as I am sure is pretty much everyone else, so we’d prefer to just celebrate that and leave racial quota musings to the racists. If Winter Olymptic Team USA in 2014 performs better than in 2010, that would be even better, and I suspect no one except racists will be delving into its racial makeup.

    I think the record is quite clear who in this comment chain is the racist, so no further comment is necessary.

    As far as the rest of the stuff in your last comment, for someone who doesn’t care to read what I write you complain way too much about being misinterpreted. You also have problems with basic chain of reasoning. For someone who doesn’t care to answer questions and/or take suggestions, why exactly do you keep commenting here? To keep propagating your racist dogmas devoid of any rational basis and get angry when someone challenges them? :)

  21. As an athlete of color who have had to deal with racism his entire life, I am comfortably certain that this “Mark” fellow is a racist. Albeit, an educated, sophisticated racist who happens to be expertly skilled at contorting and manipulating simple truths into his own twisted interpretations. He then regurgitates them via an articulate delivery system that makes the naive believe his version is the correct interpretation.

    The original author was trying to convey a very simple point, that for the life of me, for which I can’t understand why Mark has such difficulty wrapping his head around:

    The reason why most winter olympic sports feature a dearth of African-American athletes is primarily due to socioeconomic reasons. MOST winter sports are more costly to train in, participate in, and compete in than summer sports. MOST African-Americans are socioeconomically disadvantaged compared to their white counterparts. MOST Americans would agree with the above statements. Doesn’t it then stand to reason that the more expensive winter sports would witness lower participation rates from African Americans? Am I going too fast for you, Mark? I am stating clear realities of American life here, not going off on wild speculations.

    So Mark, before you start poking holes in my statements, please note that I have not made any inferences to African-Americans’ abilities/inabilities to earn lots of money (and thereby participate in some of these winter sports), nor any inferences in regards to African-Americans’ inherent DESIRE to participate in winter sports. But I do have a point I am arguing:

    You believe that racial makeup has no relevance to Team USA’s 2010 winter contingent. You believe the original article was a waste of time because it dwells on what you essentially regard as a “non-issue”. You believe we should all be colorblind and simply cheer Team USA on for their accomplishments. The fact that 99% of the team is white, according to you, could simply be interpreted as a mere coincidence because those athletes that chose to participate in these sports just happened to be white. Mere coincidence. Right? Well Mark, if this is what you believe, then you are woefully ignorant of the underlying root causes of a phenomenon that the article’s author was rightfully attempting to address. I highly suggest you check your asshole because your head might be there.

    I’ll end my post with an example. Let’s say we have two American families: An average upper middle class white family of four (husband+wife+10 year old daughter) from Denver, CO and a black single mom also raising a 10 year old daughter from the Bronx, NY. Hell, you know what? Let’s take geography out of the equation. Let’s just say the black single mom and her son also lives in Denver, CO. Now we’re on an equal playing field right, Mark? Except I forgot to mention that the white dad and white mom from the first family is a doctor and lawyer respectively and their combined gross family income is around $500,000 per year. The black single mom, on the other hand, struggles to support herself and her son because she makes $10/hr as a cashier at Walmart. Now let’s say that, given Denver’s proximity to so many awesome ski resorts, the teenaged kids from both families grew up with media images of alpine skiing and want to learn. I am a downhill skier myself, so I can confidently say that the average cost of outfitting a child with a very basic set of alpine gear (skis, bindings, poles, pants, jacket, helmet, gloves) will cost about $1000. Now factor in the cost of transportation to the resort, lift tickets, and lessons. While the total cost (capital + recurring) might be chump change to a family earning $500k/year, this cost is prohibitive to the single mom trying to make ends meet at $10/hr. Given the number of seasons of continuous devotion required to become an average/decent skier, to not even mention coaching or racing, you tell me which kid from which family will most likely stick with it and become the next Lindsey Vonn?

    Have fun poking holes in my argument. But I’m done with you, Mark.

  22. Sorry Mark. I made a typo:

    Please replace “son” in my second to last paragraph with “daughter”.

  23. So, Nathan… you accuse me of being colorblind and a racist at the same time??? What planet do you live on, buddy? If your definition of a racist is someone who is colorblind and completely ignores race, then what exactly does that make you?

    But of course you made plenty of “inferences to African-Americans’ abilities/inabilities to earn lots of money (and thereby participate in some of these winter sports).” Whom are you trying to fool? Your inferences are all rather negative:
    -Your claim that blacks are socioeconomically disadvantaged compared to their white “counterparts.”
    -Your example in which a black girl necessarily grows up in a single-parent low-income hoursehold.
    Is that what you consider “simple truths”? Do you actually dare to claim that you are not insulting black people with those statements? I mean:
    -Aren’t there plenty of poor white people who could only dream of being as socioeconomically disadvantaged as, let’s say, Denzel Washington? Are you saying that there are no black people at all who live in well-to-do neighborhoods thanks to the income they are bright enough to earn while there are white people who live in trailer parks because they aren’t as bright?
    -Can’t the story in your example be reversed with black lawyer dad and black doctor mom making $500K/year while a white single mom is working the cash register? What does race have to do with ability, choice of profession, and earning potential? Why do you think that black people are somehow doomed to poverty?

    Face it, you and Monica instead of elevating black people are actually denigrating and insulting them.

    “MOST African-Americans are socioeconomically disadvantaged compared to their white counterparts. MOST Americans would agree with the above statements.” I think most Americans would agree that America is the land of opportunity and everyone makes his/her own success. If you think that black people are somehow incapable of success, then you and Monica are living in a self-constructed racist bubble. Even in the story you wrote the black girl from single-parent low-income household would be able to succeed because she would be able to find a sponsor. The $1K cost that you mentioned is not a lot of money and people do sponsor other people because people admire and appreciate talent. The only way for a person to fail is by choice. So, if you choose to fail as an individual, don’t blame white people for it. And if you do, then at least do admit that you are a loser and racism is your crutch.

    So you are an athlete? I suspect you are a very bad athlete if you are so hung up on race. As to why race would be so important to you, I have no idea. It’s not like it will help you ski faster… unless you also believe that white skin encounters lesser air drag and thus feel disadvantaged. :)
    You “have had to deal with racism his entire life”? Awwww… that sad sap story ought to be good.

    “You believe we should all be colorblind and simply cheer Team USA on for their accomplishments. The fact that 99% of the team is white, according to you, could simply be interpreted as a mere coincidence because those athletes that chose to participate in these sports just happened to be white. Mere coincidence. Right? Well Mark, if this is what you believe, then you are woefully ignorant of the underlying root causes of a phenomenon that the article’s author was rightfully attempting to address.”

    Now that paragraph is just classic. Exchanging comments with people like you is so great because that’s how people like you expose what you are made of when challenged. So, go on, help discredit yourself even further. Tell us ignorant Americans how we should all become racists and instead of celebrating athletic prowess let us all drown in the sleeze/dirt of racial quotas. Yeah, let’s all get together and turn sports into a swamp of racial hatred. I mean, who cares about athletic prowess anyway? It’s all about racial justice, right? :)

  24. Now, Mark, Nathan said you were being racist, and I tend to agree with him. Sorry, but that’s just not on. Not in my book. I think most of America would agree with that.

  25. Gee, Jason, you and Nathan accuse me of being racist simply because I accused you of that first. That’s quite transparent. It’s the type of intimidation tactic that people like you have been using for decades, and guess what? The trick is up and it is no longer going to work. You weren’t able to back up your point of view when we had our exchange and Nathan’s flawed and racist ramblings hardly help you. Two people who are wrong hardly outweigh one person who is right. I think most of America is quite sick of race baiters like Monica, you, and Nathan and it’s about time to send you racists back to the sleazy swamp you came from and where you belong. Leave race out of sports and pretty much everything else.

  26. People like us?! People like us?!!! you mean black people? You just can’t seem to be able to accept that there are people like ‘us’ – Nathan and I that — gah I’m not even going to bother. I’m lost for words. You know – you nearly had me with some of your ‘points’ but now its just plain to see: You’re xenophobic. Well good luck to you – I hope I never bump into you, or people like you.

  27. That just goes to show why race is best left out of human relations altogether and proves my point so perfectly. Had Monica not written her race-tainted article with racial slur in the title, everyone would just be free to enjoy sports. But because she is a flaming racist, she just couldn’t resist. You can say that I could just keep quiet about the article. Sure, I could. But why should I? The double standard whereby black people have been allowed to make blatantly racist statements toward white people has been tolerated for far too long – that’s why folks like Monica think that they can write blatantly racist articles and get away with it. Reality check: racism is *any* consideration of race where race is not a factor. Spotting it has more to do with one’s ability to think than one’s ability to pander to what either Monica or Nathan or you or any black person says racism is. Therefore, just because you are black, do not expect that your accusations of racism will automatically stick. When you make those kinds of accusations, you have to substantiate them, and when you fail to substantiate them, why are you so surprised that I slam you hard? You got what you deserved, no more and no less. I may be white, but I came to the U.S. as immigrant from Eastern Europe and I have worked to get whatever I have in this country. I am certainly not going to tolerate losers who just happen to be black envying my “vanillacash” simply because I am white. That’s racism, clear and simple. And I have absolutely zero tolerance for sad sap stories along the lines of “I’ve had to deal with racism all my life, blah, blah, blah…” The fact is, if you were born in the U.S. you simply have no excuse to whine because this country is such an enormous pool of opportunity and you don’t have to learn a foreign language and/or adopt to foreign culture in mid-flight in order to take advantage of all those opportunities. If you were born in this country, you simply have no excuse to whine. When someone uses his race as an excuse for failure, I am not going to pander to that. I suspect few people will. As I already said, people succeed or fail based on their strength or weakness as individuals and race has nothing to do with it. You want to call me xenophobic? OK. Where is your evidence to back that claim? You have none. So, I suggest you read what I say and think about it before making unsubstantiated claims, because if you get it wrong, don’t be surprised when you get slammed. You hope to never bump into me or “people like me”? Fine. I am not too keen on bumping into black racists either. There are plenty of intelligent, capable, and successful black folks who I’d enjoy bumping into and having an intelligent conversation with about something much more interesting than race. Face it, race is a crutch – that’s the sort of sleaze that prevents you from having intelligent conversations. If you want to go with Monica and Nathan, that’s just fine with me – doesn’t hurt me one way or another. Just don’t let the joke be on you since both Monica and Nathan think that black people are a bunch of deadbeat dads, single moms, and low-income households – which one of those three stereotypes do you want to be?

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