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Professor Says It’s Time to Boycott Anti-DEI Colleges Over Exploitation of Black Athletes

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Source: Reddit

University of Southern California professor Shaun Harper recently wrote a piece in Forbes titled Black Athletes Could Upset March Madness and End Attacks on DEI.

He rightfully points out that black people represent a disproportionate percentage of college student-athletes who populate the high-revenue sports of basketball and football at predominantly white institutions, both nationwide and in states that are against diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Maybe because these Black boys make insane amounts of money at white-controlled athletic conferences, universities, coaches, athletic directors, university presidents, television networks, and others, he said.

Harper speaks of Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin encouraging Black athletes to steer clear of powerhouses like Alabama and Auburn if the state passes anti-diversity legislation.

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ALSO READ: NAACP Leader Urges Black Student-Athletes To Boycott Florida Colleges Over Anti-DEI Policy

NAACP President Derrick Johnson and others are calling for Black athletes to avoid Florida and, ostensibly, other states attacking diversity initiatives and Black access to higher education.

They opine that the imbalance of power and profit demands a response, particularly because these institutions reap considerable financial benefits from the very individuals they fail to stand by in matters of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

It all comes down to Harper’s question: Will Black student-athletes at the University of Alabama, Auburn, University of Florida, Florida State, University of Kentucky (I would add the University of Louisville), University of Texas, and other sports powerhouses located in states where DEI has been banned also use their platforms to discourage others from enrolling at their institutions?

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POLL—Is Systemic Racism a Significant Problem That Requires Reform in Policing and Other Areas?

Such questions about Black athletes standing against injustice are not new. In 2017, legendary sportswriter William Rhoden chimed in when President Donald Trump called Black athletes SOBs before a seething, mostly white crowd, ironically, in racially challenged Alabama.

Trump was calling out the few who dared to support Colin Kaepernick’s protest of racism, brutality, and inequality in America. Rhoden believed that Trump (and much of white America) would not back down. Educational achievement and intellectual aptitude matter little to most recruiters, universities, coaches, and academic advisers.

This is one reason Black athletes are rarely steered toward Black Studies classes by their academic advisers at predominantly white institutions (PWI).

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Men like Paul Robeson, Jim Brown, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Colin Kaepernick were not only rare athletes, but they also possessed rare racial awareness. That is the reason most Black athletes did not stand with Kaepernick when he was white-balled.

ALSO READ: Coach of Vermont High School Team Banned for Forfeiting Game Over Trans Athlete Participation Defends Action

All things considered, it is not surprising that so few Black athletes stand up. Be clear: student-athletes will lose if they are left to stand alone, and they will, in most cases, as many fearful black administrators, faculty, and staff have muzzled themselves on PWI campuses.

Like most miseducated, misled, and cowed Black people, they cannot adjust when debates dive into history, political ideology, and structural marginalization or outright ignore core grievances and alter the discussions altogether.

Yes, Black athletes could certainly upset March Madness and more. They could disrupt the anti-diversity movement in higher education. It is just another reality that makes the current crop of Black people in America easy prey for their enemies.

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