The NBA may want to rethink its memo encouraging its stars to be be more socially active.
So far the resulting social activism has resulted in one of their star players being disinvited from the White House after he complained about having to go, another of its stars calling the president “a bum”, and a retired NBA legend wishing he was still playing so that he could kneel during the national anthem.
Assuming they don’t want to go in the direction of the NFL, and want fans to continue buying their tickets and their jerseys, this may not have been what NBA had in mind.
However, at least one retired NBA star has decided to use his fame to socially engage on an issue not involving President Trump, police brutality, income inequality, global warming, Ben Shapiro speaking on a college campus, or whatever else is working up these progressive athletes these days.
Kenyon Martin has decided to use his fame to address an issue much closer to his heart: Jeremy Lin’s hair.
“Do I need to remind this damn boy that his last name Lin?” Martin said in the [Instagram] video. “Like, come on man. Let’s stop this, man, with these people, man. There is no way possible that he would have made it on one of our teams with that bulls–t goin’ on in his head. Come on man, somebody need to tell him, like: ‘All right bro, we get it. You wanna be black.’ Like, we get it. But the last name is Lin.”
The Brooklyn Net point guard answered by stating that he was “grateful” to Kenyon Martin for sharing his opinion.
He then added what may be the ultimate zinger, which exposed a bit of hypocrisy in Mr. Martin’s criticism: “At the end of the day i appreciate i have dreads and you have Chinese tattoos bc i think its a sign of respect.”
The full exchange can be seen here:
Jeremy Lin with the kindest comeback of all-time. pic.twitter.com/oRx6BLrpHw
— PinPoint Sports (@SportsPinPoint) October 6, 2017
If nothing else, the two have reignited a discussion about cultural appropriation, although that hasn’t been something folks have been too concerned about since the days when Pat Boone was making a mint singing “Tutti Frutti” on national radio while Little Richard was performing in small clubs.
Some would beg to differ of course, as the following video indicates:
However, for the most part, blacks sporting Chinese character tattoos and Asians with dreadlocks can come together for common cause, such as stopping Pat Boone from singing Little Richard songs ever again.