Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Charles Barkley: Straight talker

Every time I've seen Charles Barkley interviewed on tv I've admired his fearlessness. The man says what he thinks, in a disarmingly straightforward manner, and this TNR online interview is no different. A few quotes:
    America is divided by economics strictly. You know, people always talk about race, and we have racial problems in this country. Of course we do. But the real issue is the rich against the poor. We've got to get poor white people and poor black people and Mexicans to realize they are all in the same boat.


    In some quarters Barack has been criticized for not being black enough.

    Well, that's because black people are fucked up. One of the reasons that black people are not going to be successful is because of other black people. We tell black kids that if they make good grades, they are acting white. If they speak well, we tell them that they are acting white. We have a lot of demons in our own closet--in our own family--that we have to address. But first of all, we want black men to be intelligent and articulate and things like that. That's not acting white. That's the way it should be. ... We become our own worst enemy with random black-on-black crime, teen pregnancy, single-parent homes. You know we cannot blaming white America for our ills. Does racism exist? Of course it does. But, at some point, I have to make sure I am educated. I don't have ten kids and no job. I am not killing other black people. At some point, you have to grow up.
I don't know if his style will win him any political points, but I really admire his candor.

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