The Million Dollar Slave

We have all heard stories about how Blacks use to perform on stage in front of millions of Whites in places where Blacks were not even allowed. Many would come to call this COONING. The Urban dictionary defines cooning as, "a verb derived from the word coon. A coon was/is a person of African decent whose sole purpose was/is to entertain white people. These 'coons' started out as wearing black face, characterized by having big eyes and painting big red lips on their face. These people would tap dance, play instruments and sing."


Was this us performing for our Master? Was this another form of slavery? Remember hearing about Slave Masters that use to make their slaves sometimes serve as their entertainment on the Plantations?

I am sure that many of us have already pondered on the above statements before, but there is another form of entertainment that I do no think many have ever questioned. Read the below statements and see if cooning can be inserted somewhere in the quotes.

Forty Million Dollar Slaves:

"David Falk, the sports attorney who helped make Michael Jordon into a global icon, recalled a negotiation session with the Knicks in 1991. After Falk and player Patrick Ewing made an offer, the general manager looked at Ewing and asked, 'How much money is enough?' Falk said he knew that Ewing was offended, and so was he. 'I knew that in Ewings mind that wasn't an economic statement, it wasn't a negotiation statement. It was a racist statement saying, 'You're a young black man, how much is enough?'"

It took so many years for Black athletes to even be allowed to play with White athletes. Once they were allowed to play, the elevated compensation of some players obscured the reality of exploitation and contemporary colonization. Today Black athletes are paid a lot of money to play sports, but sometimes it still seems like they are cooning.

When I was in the audience of a Basketball game one night, I can recall watching this guy slap one of the Black ball players on the butt, but instead of it looking like your usual slap on the butt done during games, it made me shiver. It appeared more like he was sending "his slave" out to go coon some more. Go out and do what I pay you to do.

I am quickly taken back to the Plantation where Slave Masters use to make their slaves fight one another for entertainment and to claim they had the strongest Negro's. Are our Black athletes secretly being played like that? Most Black athletes are the Franchise players....wait I think you missed that.


Have they begin paying us millions of dollars just to be able to control us more? Is the money, that Black athletes make, thrown in the faces of the rest of the community? Do we then try to obtain the same amounts of money as them, and want to spend it the way that they do? Does money then somehow create a new form of Slavery?

If you understand what is being said, let me know what you think.

Are they Million Dollar Slaves? Are we?

The point of this is not to just ponder on if the Black athlete is a slave, but to understand the new form of Slavery that is occurring.

Keep Up!



philosopher said...

I think this idea is pretty abstract although I am reluctant to say it doesn't exist. Perhaps this is a form of slavery, I don't know. But what I would be more confident in saying is that to me it seems as though Black people have themselves become a slave to money. It's too important and people are willing to do immoral things to get it. I do believe that Whites perpetuate the negativity... but it is not as though we don't have brains. The Black consciousness is deteriorating, and instead, people are out wanting to be rappers, athletes, or entertainment lawyers because it will get them the most money, rather than wanting to help their fellow man. And I'm not saying this is just Black people's problem... it's more of a societal problem. If money is an ultimate goal, you've become a slave to getting it, and therefore what you think is going to make you free actually has you in bondage.

Jennifer said...

I get what you're saying but I don't know if I'd go as far as to call them slaves.

Yes, they get offered a lot of money to play a game that they love, but ultimately it is their choice to take the millions. Slaves did not have a choice and to the best of my knowledge, the coons were getting paid little, if anything, to entertain. Do keep in mind that athletes who are not of color also get paid in sizeable amounts, as well--are they slaves, too? Rappers, whose record labels are often headed by white executives, also fall in the same boat.

At the end of the day, it's it all comes down to choice. Sure, a lot of these athletes come from places where they probably wouldn't see that kind of money making a (legit) living any other kind of way, but do they really need all that money? I already think athletes get paid way too much for nothing, anyway. In the society we live in today, all it does is fuel the hoop dreams of impressionable inner city kids even more, making them think that there isn't success outside of the realm of sports. More athletes need put those millions to good use by reaching out to communities and teaching these kids that there's much more to life than just tossing a ball around.

Bahama said...

You know I never looked at it that way? But I would have to disagree, for some of the athletes playing ball is a platform to other things, owning their own busines ventures and their own homes. So if that is slavery where do i sign up? I think ballers have alot more power and sense than people give them credit for. But i can see where you are going and in a way you can make a pretty valid case for it.But I don't think it's true.

Beautifully.Conjured.Up said...

I've thought about it, and I feel as though its a form of being an indentured servant. You are contracted to serve in exchange for something, in this case money. However, I also feel as though it is a form of slavery. These team owners, OWN the players. For example, Michael Vick. What happened to him wasn't do to him messing with dogs. It goes deeper than that. He and his team owner had a major fallout, and the team owner messed him up...not only him, but other people who were on his side on the team. In essence, that is the same thing slaver owners did when a slave "got out of line," by punishing them, making an example out of them, and breaking up the family.

I once heard someone say NBA stands for "Nigger For Life." Maybe.

The Socialite said...

philosopher: I totally agree when you say that maybe we have become a slave to money. Basically alot of the world is a slave to money!

Jennifer: When you make the statement that alot of these kids come from the inner city and if produces false dreams...I agree! The reason that I say that it is slavery, is me just saying that it is another way to keep the man down, specifically the Black man.

I think that the rich people that run this company and the large corporations realize the power of Black spending. Blacks spend so much, but make so little. I think that they realized this, and said if we give them a little and get them to spend alot, we will have a form of control over them.

Why? They will now have to depend on the government to survive. Many people argue that Welfare and the Projects were another way to keep us down, even though its suppose to help.

Also the media highlights more celebrities spending money and kids think that is the only way for them to be successful. To Keep up until they can become famous, they sale drugs to get by. Which is another way to keep us down.

The point I am trying to make is that the people in power want to stay in power. I think they will do anything to keep our race down. Everyone has a choice, but because of all of the things that we have been put through as a race, sometimes we choose what we think might be the right thing, but can't go in the right direction because we have been blinded.

Bahama: I agree it may not be true, but like you said, there are alot of reasons to believe it to be true. Just another way I think they are trying to keep us down. They seem to give us a little to shut us up. Like kind of giving in to some of our demands during the Civil Rights Movement, but yet its still segregation and racism going on today.

beautifully: So True!!!!

freemanpress said...

Well I agree with you because once they sign that contract they are slaves to whatever the NBA or that team wants. They can't speak out on anything political or social without fear of losing their money (whipped in the back) if they do anything crazy that brings negative attention to the league they get kicked out (Hung).

Case in point is Michael Vick, because as soon as he stepped out of line he went to jail for dog fighting and everyone in the world knows that's not a reason to go to jail. If someone tells you what to do, what to say, what to wear, where to be, and how to act either that person is your mother and if not you are their slave.

The trade off is a bigger bounty of money but broken down it's primarily the same. They are not businessman because a businessman owns his own life and way. You go and play on the Plantation (NBA & NFL) and abide by their rules. They control everything and now they even get suspended for domestic abuse.

If a businessman has domestic abuse with his wife does Wal Mart say no we can't do business with him. No because he is a vendor unrelated to Wal-Mart. These guys think they are vendors but they are more like slaves, because if one doesn't work there won't be as much cottong this season! You can call it a Donkey with a Carrot syndrome too because the ASS will go plow the whole field all for a Carrot!

foxxychica said...

Beautifully stated Freemanpress. Do you all remember when the NBA started this new rule that the athletes had to wear suits when they were coming to and from work? Well, many people didn't agree with it, but I saw it as this: White business owner attracts other white business owners. If you look like a dope man or thug, my white business owners might not want to support my business.

Also, there is a book "Forty Million Dollar Slaves: The Rise, Fall, and Redemption of the Black Athlete" by William C. Rhoden that I just started reading. Rhoden believes that black athletes' exercise of true power is as limited today as when masters forced their slaves to race and fight. Having said that, the choice is that of the athlete. When you think about most Black athletes, they come from less than stellar backgrounds. Most of them are "the great white hope" of their family and community.

Ed The Sports Fan said...

I have personally read the entire book 40 million dollar slaves and from what I have taken from it is that our athletes need to have more ownership in what they are doing, how they carry themselves in the public eye, and realize that they have so much more power then the amount of money in their bank account.

Congrats on the nomination, hope you win. Maybe we'll both be winners :)


Ed The Sports Fan said...

By the way, LeBron would be a great example...except he doesn't have any sense of him. Standing strong on an issue, that affects his black community. He'll have the ownership and the money and creative control, but until he takes a stand (like a Charles Barkley) or tries to make an actual difference, he'll be a "slave" to those that can help him get more money.


The Socialite said...

Freeman and Foxxy: Leave it to you two to always explain something perfectly! lol

ed: Thank you for stopping by and congrats to you also! I am glad that you read the book. We need more people like you that are actually out here reading. That was one thing I talked about earlier this month.

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J. Trueblood said...

(Was this us performing for our Master?)

Are you a slave?

Basketball players choose to play for people's enjoyment. Choice makes the term 'slavery' void.

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