WBC welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather created quite a stir for criticizing emerging NBA superstar Jeremy Lin.
“Jeremy Lin is a good player but all the hype is because he’s Asian,” Mayweather tweeted a week ago. “Black players do what he does every night and don’t get the same praise.”
A strong backlash immediately followed Mayweather’s comments, and many have accused the controversial boxer of being a racist. UFC president Dana White is one of those folks, and he shared his thoughts during his “presidential” address on Fuel TV.
“First of all what he said is racist,” White said. “He’s made a couple of racist comments, and yes Floyd, you’re a racist with the stuff that you said. First of all, Jeremy Lin gets all this credit because he’s an Asian player in the NBA? … Not only can he compete and make it in the NBA, the guy is tearing it up and breaking records… The other thing you said, Manny Pacquiao should go make some sushi somewhere? Sushi is from Japan, he’s from the Philippines dummy. Don’t worry about what these other guys are doing, shooting your big mouth off on Twitter. What you should worry about is getting in there and making the fight all the boxing fans want to see. Get in there and fight Manny Pacquiao.”
Even though I don’t agree with Mayweather’s comments regarding Lin, calling him a racist is simply absurd. Mayweather was simply stating his opinion, and he didn’t hurl any insults at the Asian community while doing so. There’s actually a bit of truth in Mayweather’s comments, as Lin’s race does play a factor in the coverage he receives (the fact he led his team to victory in his first seven starts, his impressive numbers, religion, rough journey in the NBA and Harvard background also play a part).
With racism still alive and well in 2012, it’s a little disconcerting to see some try to trivialize it. Racism isn’t Mayweather stating an opinion you might not agree with. Racism is denying people the right to live in peace because of their origins, hating a person simply because he/she doesn’t look like you, or if you need a closer example, the comments that will soon follow this article or any other race related article on the internet.