Tag Archives: ESPN

#VenusVs: Race & Meritocracy #NineForIX


Venus Williams playing World Team Tennis in Ma...

Venus Williams playing World Team Tennis in Mamaroneck, NY (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Last night, I watched Venus Vs, part of ESPN’s Nine for IX series (the IX is for title nine/women in sports). For about the last forty minutes, it became the story of how Venus Williams, Wimbledon champion of numerous times, fought to earn women equal pay at Wimbledon. I found the story intriguing back then as I do now, but I would like to reflect very briefly on the first 15 minutes. Venus’ presence in the late 90’s was unwelcome in the all white world of professional tennis. One of the more troubling events I will never forget was when Venus was penalized for one of her hair beads falling onto the court. I think this is a microcosm of the embedded racist belief systems in U.S. American culture. Venus was viewed as a monstrosity all because of her hair. Her dark skin + braided hair did not fit the beauty standards of liberal white supremacy, and so she had to be disciplined for it. The far more disturbing for me is the documentary’s commitment to meritocracy (which is a process of white liberal racism). The narrative turn for the story happens to go like this: Venus Williams faces racist microaggressions from tennis whiteys; Venus Williams wins a lot; Venus Williams overcomes racism. See a problem here? I do. Defending race-based meritocracy is still protecting racist institutions. The onus is on the part of the oppressed to prove that their looks, culture, bodily presence, and race is acceptable in the face of white supremacy. In short, race-based meritocracy blames the victims of racism for their plight without confronting the racist line judges and tennis players who Venus had to deal with.

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Corruption at ESPN?

I love sports as much as the next person, but for several years, I have continued to dislike ESPN, especially ever since they took over Monday Night Football with sub-par commentary and bad match-ups. In addition, ESPN should really change its name since it only covers a few chosen teams predominantly from the New York-Boston area and California (I am just referring to professional sports here; let’s not get into college athletics right now, especially the BCS which ESPN analysts love to defend since it benefits them).  This, and the lack of an attempt at trying to be objective in it’s “documentaries” and reporting are part of the reason why I try to avoid ESPN and ESPN 2. (Sorry Chad for being a tool and still having cable!)

So imagine my un-surprise when the recent allegations about so-called NFL “draft expert” Mel Kiper Jr first surfaced.  I suspect there is more to the story that is not being told, especially from the man who just happened to WRONGLY predict Ryan Leaf would have a better career than Peyton Manning.  Ryan Leaf is one of the players alleged to have had contact with agents affiliated with Kiper.

The latest ESPN craziness happened actually Monday Night, in the, ahem, massacre in Jacksonville by the Tennessee Titans.  The referees apparently asked Jeff Fisher, the Titans coach, to take timeouts so there could be commercial breaks from ESPN’s sponsors. I just find it ridiculous that a network could try to interfere with Jeff Fisher’s job,which is to coach the Tennessee Titans and keep his players from getting hurt, by melting the clock.  But of course, for ESPN, it’s not really about teams like the Titans, since they do not live in their beloved California or New York/Boston markets.

Thoughts on Super Bowl XLIV

I would like to thank two of the New Orleans Saints fans Joel and T.C. who have biblioblogs for allowing me to join the Saints’ bandwagon after my beloved God’s America’s team, the Cowboys were eliminated.  Brett Favre is a no-class hack and his best days are far behind him.

I am not an anti-Peyton Manning football fan, neither am I a Saints fan.  What makes me sick the most is the biased sports coverage of ESPN which is unbalanced and was most favored towards the favorites, the Indianapolis Colts.  I must admit that I do not watch ESPN anymore even though I have cable; instead, I prefer to watch the Mountain West Network for college sports in the Mountain West Conference.

Congrats  New Orleans Saints on your first Super Bowl. You all have made it okay for me to believe in fairy tales again.

WHO DAT!?!?!