Jonathan A. Carroll, Ph.D shares his unique view on the world
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Recent Lessons and Observations: Working, NAACP, Biz of Sports
You never know who's watching you... I recently had to walk the plank (at knifepoint) at my previous place of employment in what can best be analogized as a Stan Van Gundy/Pat Riley situation minus the press conference where I talk about spending more time with my family. The ordeal was a clear reminder of a lecture John C. Carroll laid on me long ago. "You can show your ass if you want to," he said, "but you better be clear about what you're doing because you never know who's watching you." Had I been one known to go around acting like a jerk at every turn, then I would have never gotten another job so close to home as quickly as I did. Shout out to Pops for hammering home a lesson as only he could.
Get off the mat NAACP The NAACP has a chance to be revive it's image as an organization interested in doing more for the community than putting on a solid awards show. It has been a long time since the group has been seen as a leader in advocating for the human rights of those who have traditionally been denied rights and opportunities for advancement. Current leader, Ben Jealous strikes me as someone who is both aware of the history, but more importantly has a plan on how to be viable in today's more nuanced racial landscape. He just got a fire baptism on how nuanced the political game can be in this era, but he can't let the egg white stay on his face and keep him from the mission of advocacy on a number of fronts. One of the key initiatives should be domestic job creation. The statistics around unemployed men of color in many urban centers is staggering and it will be difficult to get people out to vote in these all important November elections if they are not working. Let's get to work Mr Jealous, I'm ready to ride...
Hood Rich Ain't Wealthy It will be interesting to see how athletes in both the NBA and NFL in particular will strategize to navigate through upcoming Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) negotiations. I was one who applauded how James, Wade, and Bosh leveraged their free agency against the owners, I'm hopeful that the rest of the league has planned properly so that they can have leverage against owners who claim to be losing money yet continue to hand out enigmatic max contracts to overrated players. Athletes across both the NBA and NFL have long been been painted as mindless worker bees with weak unions because of their hyper-consumer mindsets. Analysts like Chris Collinsworth are already estimating that as much as 25% of NFL players will go broke with any kind of extended work stoppage. A sad thought, but here's to hoping that players have realized that amassing wealth is a game of chess, not checkers.