There's a new basketball league forming, calling itself the All-American Basketball Alliance and is based out of Atlanta, Georgia. They plan to operate 12 teams in the Southeast starting in June. The teams will all be owned by the league, but investors can become a "licensee" of one of the teams by paying $10K. Let's see...what else is there that is noteworthy about the league?
...oh, yes. Don "Moose" Lewis, the commissioner of the league, says it is going to be an all-white league. That's not reading between the lines, he explicitly states that. He denies racism is behind the roster composition. "There's nothing hatred about what we're doing. I don't hate anyone of color. But people of white, American-born citizens are in the minority now. Here's a league for white players to play fundamental basketball, which they like." And, in addition to, on top of that, Lewis claims the aim of the league is to emphasize fundamental basketball instead of "street-ball" played by "people of color". "Would you want to go to the game and worry about a player flipping you off or attacking you in the stands or grabbing their crotch? That's the culture today, and in a free country we should have the right to move ourselves in a better direction."
You know, I know plenty of blacks who aren't in gangs, and I know plenty of whites who are (met a bunch of them at my last warehouse job). There are plenty of whites who will exhibit bad behavior. And as far as games that emphasize fundamentals, it's called "college basketball" (you can tell at pick-up games who the ringers are). So, everything he says the league is about is laughable. Bottom line: it's an all-white league, and he's just aiming for plausible deniability.
Lewis wants one of the teams in Augusta, Georgia. The Mayor of Augusta, Deke Copenhaver, issued a press release telling Lewis to go suck mud. "As a sports enthusiast, I have always supported bringing more sporting activities to Augusta. However, in this instance I could not support in good conscience bringing in a team that did not fit with the spirit of inclusiveness that I, along with many others, have worked so hard to foster in our city." Also chiming in is Clint Bryant, the athletic director at Augusta State University. "It's so absurd, it's funny, but it gives you an idea of the sickness of our society" he said. "It shows you what lengths people will go to just to be mean-spirited. I think at any basketball level, no matter if it's all black, all white, all Hispanic, all Asian or anyone else, the players should just be a basketball team." Although no names were given by Lewis, there's apparently a lot of cities that have already told him not to even think about bringing one of his teams to their locales.
I hate seeing the game I used to love being used as a tool of exclusion....