Skip to comments.A Lesson on Racial Discrimination
Posted on 05/14/2014 4:51:59 AM PDT by Kaslin
Donald Sterling, Los Angeles Clippers owner, was recorded by his mistress making some crude racist remarks. Since then, Sterling's racist comments have dominated the news, from talk radio to late-night shows. A few politicians have weighed in, with President Barack Obama congratulating the NBA for its sanctions against Sterling. There's little defense for Sterling, save his constitutional right to make racist remarks. But in a sea of self-righteous indignation, I think we're missing the most valuable lesson that we can learn from this affair -- a lesson that's particularly important for black Americans.
Though Sterling might be a racist, there's an important "so what?" Does he act in ways commonly attributed to racists? Let's look at his employment policy. This season, Sterling paid his top three players salaries totaling over $46 million. His 20-person roster payroll totaled over $73 million. Here are a couple of questions for you: What race are the players whom racist Sterling paid the highest salaries? What race dominated the 20-man roster? The fact of business is that Sterling's highest-paid players are black, and 85 percent of Clippers players are black. Down through the years, hundreds of U.S. corporations have faced charges of racism, and many have been subjects of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission investigations, but none of them had such a favorable employment and wage policy as Sterling. How does one explain this? People with limited thinking ability might conclude that Sterling is a racist in his private life but a nice card-carrying liberal in his public life, manifested by his hiring so many blacks, not to mention paying Doc Rivers, the Clippers' black head coach, a healthy $7 million a year. The likelier explanation is given no attention at all.
Let's use a bit of simple economics to analyze the contrast in Sterling's private and public behavior. First, professional basketball is featured by considerable market competition. There's an open opportunity in the acquisition of basketball playing skills. Youngsters just buy a basketball and shoot hoops. There's open competition in joining both high-school and college teams. You just sign up for tryouts in high school and get noticed by college scouts. Then there's considerable competition among the NBA teams in the acquisition of the best college players. Minorities and less preferred people always do better when there are open markets instead of regulated markets.
Recently deceased Nobel Prize-winning economist Gary Becker pointed this phenomenon out some years ago in his path-breaking study "The Economics of Discrimination." Many people think that it takes government to eliminate racial discrimination, but economic theory predicts the opposite. Market competition imposes inescapable profit penalties on for-profit enterprises when they make employment decisions on any basis other than worker productivity. Professor Becker's study of racial discrimination upended the view that discriminatory bias benefits those who discriminate. He demonstrated that racial discrimination is less likely in the most competitive industries, which need to hire the best workers.
According to Forbes magazine, the Los Angeles Clippers would sell for $575 million. Ask yourself what the Clippers would sell for if Sterling were a racist in his public life and hired only white players. All the evidence suggests that would be a grossly losing proposition on at least two counts. Percentagewise, blacks more so than whites excel in basketball. That's not to say that it is impossible to recruit a team of first-rate, excellent white players. However, because there is a smaller number of top-tier white players relative to black players, the recruitment costs would be prohibitive. In other words, a team of excellent white players would be far costlier to field than a team of excellent black players. It's simply a matter of supply and demand.
The takeaway from the Sterling affair is that we should mount not a moral crusade but an economic liberty crusade. In other words, eliminate union restrictions, wage controls, occupational and business licensure, and other anti-free market restrictions. Make opportunity depend on one's productivity.
When did it become a crime to be an idiot?
Why aren’t most Democrats locked-up?
More than fifty years ago the Washington Redskins had an owner, George Preston Marshall, who refused to hire black players despite every other team acquiring good black players.....and improving their teams. Marshall’s team suffered as a result. So Redskins fans were forced to suffer through many losing seasons. Marshall eventually relented under pressure from the Kennedy Justice department. Racism was bad not just because blind racism was immoral...in Marshall’s case it was stupid.
Even the estimable Williams misses that point. Sterling is a louse for a variety of reasons, but so are many people affiliated with the NBA. Few or none of them will be penalized on the order of Sterling because Sterling committed the greatest sin of all....white racism directed at blacks. Black racism directed at whites (Spike Lee, Jay-Z, Larry Johnson) is overlooked or rationalized.
The reality is that ‘racism’ only applies to whites and punitively so. This is not now nor has it ever been about fairness or ‘equality’. It is about punishing whites and garnering power. This will only go downhill from here and it will get much worse unless we make it stop.
If whites would stand up as whites it could be stopped. I just don’t understand how so many whites act indifferent about it or even act like they and their families somehow deserve it.
You have to understand that black players really are a tiny minority in hockey, and racism is much more of a reality than a perception. This guy P.K. Subban -- who plays for Montreal and is one of the top defensemen in the National Hockey League -- has a great perspective.
Classic quote (they were talking about an incident in which a fan threw a banana at the player): "I'd probably just pick it up and eat it."
But if we object to a "culture" be it healthy or not we are labeled racist. I would not be comfortable around skinheads either. I don't care if someone is gay, but I will not take part in that "culture". I hate drugs, I stay away from that "culture".
Which brings me to a question or observation. Why do deviant people who do not value my opinion and in fact say I can't have an opinion demand that I validate their feelings? Why do they care what I think? If I am just an old idiot, why do they care that I detest their piercings and Tattoo's? It's not like I say anything to them about it. I don't say anything to gays about their life style. So why do they demand I condone their behavior? Why?
“People with limited thinking ability might conclude that Sterling is a racist in his private life but a nice card-carrying liberal in his public life”
I hate to disagree with Mr.Williams but any normal person
with normal “thinking ability” would come to the same
conclusion and that the people who are accusing Sterling of
being a racist are racists themselves. The high amount he
pays for his 85% black team is no big deal because he makes
a lot more than that off of them.
What a person with “limited thinking ability” would come up
with is that white employers who hire or employ black
people are glorified slave owners and sense the coach is
black also then he is a black cracker.
The Dodgers didn’t hire Jackie Robinson because they wanted to end racism. They hired Jackie Robinson because they wanted to win baseball games.
“Which brings me to a question or observation. Why do deviant people who do not value my opinion and in fact say I can’t have an opinion demand that I validate their feelings? Why do they care what I think? If I am just an old idiot, why do they care that I detest their piercings and Tattoo’s? It’s not like I say anything to them about it. I don’t say anything to gays about their life style. So why do they demand I condone their behavior? Why?”
Because they know your a moral, principled, and responsible
human being and they want your approval, even if they have
to beat you into submission. You are what they can’t or
wont be and you set the marker of what people should be.
You are what defines their behavior as bad.
Mr. Williams nails it, again!
Incidentally, Robinson was such a great athlete in a number of sports, some people think he should have been the first black player in the NBA. Basketball might have been his best sport. He starred at UCLA in basketball as well as the other sports. At 5'11 he was a tremedous ballhandler and could easily dunk. He played for a pro bb team (Los Angeles Red Devils) in the offseason during the late forties.
I remember being accused of using a racial slur at work. (I did not by the way). But I did tell the two amish that they needed to clean up the mess they had made not just stand there and laugh. They want to get paid but not work.
That's how it went in Indiana, because the clowns don't get as much in welfare in that state. They actually have to work. It's the mentality I hate. So I bet a large percentage of their "grievances" are BS. We don't sit around thinking about these idiots 24/7.
I moved to a state where are few of them and I am glad. If that makes me racist, then so be it.
Sorry, but Williams is just wrong here, at least in the short run.
12% of Harvard's admitted students are black. Don't know how many would get in if the admissions weren't regulated, but it would be a lot fewer.
Whether this favoritism really helps them to "do better" in their life as a whole is another question entirely, but there's no question it helps them to get into Harvard.
individual and group ['culture'] tactics for marginalizing you [us] and acquiring power...
True. I knew a girl who was going to an inner city school. She was an honor student. This was 30 years ago. She was black. Nice girl, got accepted at Harvard. But she did not graduate. She was not equiped for the rigors of Cleveland Community College let alone Harvard. I always wonder what happened after that.