It’s official. LeBron James is now a billionaire. Only a third of it came from playing basketball. Most of it came from endorsements and his own business ventures. He was smart enough to demand an equity stake in his endorsers’ businesses, not just a fee. Now he has a slice of the pie in the pizza business, home gyms, ridesharing, and sports teams. He built businesses in entertainment and marketing. All this from a disadvantaged minority youth born to a single mother in an unstable household in that horrible rotten country – America – where, according to some, slavery still exists. He joins Michael Jordan, Jay-Z, Rihanna, Kanye West, Oprah Winfrey, and nine others in the black billionaire’s club.
I’ve said for a long time anyone with the right values working in the right economic system – free markets – can flourish. These black billionaires are living proof Booker T. Washington was right when he said:
The individual who can do something that the world wants done will, in the end, make his way regardless of his race.
But the Democrats, the Left, and the professional race hustlers would have you believe otherwise.
They want you to believe America is a horrible, rotten place where minorities are victims and doomed to remain so, no matter what efforts they make. These black billionaires put the lie to the Left’s entire phony diversity narrative. They put their nose to the grindstone in America’s free market system and thrived. If they can thrive, so can everybody else, even if they don’t become billionaires.
But you gotta hand it to the Left, the phony diversity narrative sells, even better than pizza.
A school in Illinois will grade by race, to equalize group outcomes, even if students don’t turn in their assignments. What an insult to tell perfectly capable people they can never succeed and will always need crutches handed out by overseers who think they’re stupid. Well-paid overseers, I might add, who are lining their own pockets in the racial guilt industry.
If the diversity narrative is so good, why do the race hustlers have to lie to make their case? BET, Occupy Democrats, a prominent journalist, and an educator all perpetuated the lie that Kansas City police shot an unarmed black woman five times last week. Body cam footage showed she had a gun and was pointing it at the officers.
People pushing the phony diversity narrative make the most outlandish claims. A black professor of race & ethnicity studies at Boston University said property is a racist construct because it was once used to enslave people. Property is a racist construct – that will come as a shock to every black, Hispanic, and Asian homeowner in the country. I’ll make you a deal. If this professor can persuade every black billionaire that property is a racist construct to the point they all give away their billions, I will eat my hat. Don’t overlook the fact that these entrepreneurs made their billions in America’s free market system which is based on – wait for it – property rights.
According to the diversity narrative, not only is property racist, but free speech is just a white man’s obsession. This claim was made by someone in the Obama administration and recently echoed by a columnist for Time Magazine. I wonder if they would have preferred that Martin Luther King not been allowed to make his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech. LeBron James likes free speech. He’s been quite vociferous about his left-wing opinions. I may not agree with what he says, but I’ll defend to the death his right to say it, as well as the right of people who use their free speech to attack free speech.
I recently heard a black female activist on the radio say we don’t really have a Declaration of Independence, that black people don’t have life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness. That’s preposterous. Of course they do.
But what’s interesting about this is how, under the phony diversity narrative, everything gets turned upside down and nothing is ever good enough. The demands are insatiable and never end. It’s like saying, ‘I’m not satisfied, you’re going to have to do better than that.’ It’s completely open-ended and a form of tyranny. But it’s also a great business model. Harp on race all the time, lay on the guilt trips, and, you too, can become a millionaire, just like Ibram X. Kendi. That’s the free market in operation. Only in America.