American Stereotypes
Author: B. Miller

Chapter 2
Stereotypes and the NBA

Stereotypes and the NBA

The National Basketball Association has been around for a long time and I donít really have anything bad to say about it, however I have made some observations about the league that I feel are important to bring up. Today, the NBA is full of players from all over the world and has truly become an International professional sport. However, there was a time when the only people that could play were white players that generally were terrible at the sport. But that has all changed today for the better. Like every other popular sport in the world it didnít take long for team owners and coaches to realize that black athletes are athletically superior to white athletes; except however for nearly all Olympic winter sports. Today, the NBA is dominated by black players, 83% to be exact. The rest of the white players warm the bench or are from some European country that most people have never heard of with weird names that are hard to pronounce.

With a disproportionate amount of black players in the NBA, it is widely accepted as a stereotype that if youíre black you are automatically considered to be good at basketball in America, which like all stereotypes isnít true for everybody. In cases where a black person isnít good at basketball a lot of Americans are left scratching their heads in confusion, similar to a girl when she finds out that her black boyfriend has a small dick. Basically, white Americans gave up on ever playing in the NBA a long time ago as a whole in America and if youíre Asian you give up on your NBA dreams by the third grade. Letís see how many Asian players are in the NBA, one and itís because he is a giant. Asians playing in the NBA are about as rare as white running backs in the NFL. Now, Native American players in the NBA are about as rare as finding a black NBA player without tattoos covering their entire arms. Do you have to be tatted up if youíre a black NBA player, because it sure seems like it?

White athletes in America are much better off trying to make it to the pros in sports like soccer, hockey or tennis, because stereotypically black Americans donít play them as much as football or basketball. As a result, the only white players in the NBA are from Europe and other countries where there are far less black athletes playing basketball, so in turn they donít get discouraged when their young because their able to actually compete against other white European players. But in terms of white American players in the NBA there are very few and none of them are any good. Thatís why white players in the NBA are typically role players or great shooters, nearly none of them have the talent to be a NBA All-star. Or white players are some super tall freak like Shawn Bradley who only got a chance to play in the NBA because he was a freak. People would only come to see the tallest Mormon in the world he was like a side show.
Look at the movie White Men Canít Jump, the whole plot of the movie was based on white people sucking at basketball, being un-athletic and having no chance versus a black basketball player, but the twist was that Billy Ho could actually play basketball, thus Wesley Snipes was able to hustle other black players based on the stereotype that white people suck at basketball and that they canít jump. In America, itís socially acceptable to make fun of white people in this stereotypical fashion. Would it be alright if someone made a move called Black Men Canít Swim starring Michael Phelps and Wesley Snipes and reversed the roles? I donít think so. But, thatís how it works in America, itís perfectly alright if to make fun of white people in a gross stereotypical fashion. Iím just sick and tired of it being ok to rip white people and everyone else is off limits. Just watch any of the popular black comedians and every single one of them will have a bit making fun of white people and the way we talk, dance, and look.

But not me, I donít prescribe to such politically correct ideals. For example, what is the deal with black people and the way they act after seeing a cool slam dunk? I was watching a street basketball show where a group of Ďmodern dayí Harlem Globetrotters go to various American ghettos and arenas and play a form of show-boating basketball that is certainly entertaining and fun to watch, talented as these players are they can do things with a basketball that I really donít care to do. What I find so funny (and stereotypically black and ghetto) is how black people after witnessing a dunk, run around like theyíre on fire after seeing one of these dunks.

The NBA in America is all about black and white athletes, every other race doesnít even matter because theyíre not represented. Think about it. People are always saying there should be more black coaches in the NBA, and there should be, however nobody is ever saying there should be more Native American or Asian coaches in the league. But itís ok to exclude every other race in this debate because theyíre not even represented among the active NBA players. You see the same debate with NASCAR and the lack of black drivers and how there should be a push to include them while not considering any of the other races in America. This is the sort of black and white debate that bothers me. This Black vs. White accountability for social justice transcends into American society while forgetting about all the other races far too much in my opinion.

A lot of black NBA players were offended when the NBA started to enforce a dress code supported by the owners, because black players were showing up to games dressed like they just got off the set of a gangster rap video. It is the same concept that clubs in America use to keep thugs out of their clubs, by enforcing a dress code that excludes ghetto dress and the associated problems with people that dress like that. Basically, the NBA was trying to avoid the league being stereotyped as having a bunch of black thugs playing for it. Of course it didnít help when Ron Artest went into the stands at a game and got into a fight with some fans. Although the players are not required to be role models, the league was hoping to at least have them be professional up standing citizens. In closing, the NBA isnít a league full of thugs, but there are some bad apples in the league that perpetuate stereotypes associated with the NBA.


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