Disney Corporation is in freefall, with one film flop after another. Its share price has suffered accordingly:
Disney pretty much defines corporate wokism, and most people think the company’s far-left orientation largely accounts for its decline. CEO Bob Iger, brought out of retirement in a desperate move, seemed to agree:
The culture wars are bad for business, said Disney/ESPN top dog Bob Iger recently, and he vowed to “quiet the noise.”
But Disney is a huge company with many tentacles, and at least one of them, the notoriously liberal ESPN, didn’t get the memo. ESPN has hired the thoroughly discredited Ibram X. Kendi to host a series of programs on “the pervasiveness of racism in sports.” Kendi was last seen fleeing his “Center for Antiracist Research” at Boston University, apparently one step ahead of the sheriff as millions of dollars have gone missing from his academic sinecure. If the authorities are looking for someone to prosecute for fraud, Ibram X. Kendi is a much better prospect than Donald Trump. But don’t hold your breath.
For present purposes, though, the real question is, what is the audience for an ESPN series on pervasive racism in modern sports? First of all, the premise is absurd, if they are talking about racism against blacks (as Kendi always does):
[T]he professional sports leagues have made repeated and often self-conscious efforts to avoid and reject racism. Does Ibram X. Kendi really expect us to believe that the NBA is racist? As Old Joe Biden would say, Come on, man! Even that whitest of sports, professional hockey, is trying to become more “diverse”: last year, a report was presented to the NHL’s Board of Governors and distributed to multiple internal committees that noted with horror that fully “83.6% of the NHL’s workforce is white and that men make up nearly 62% of the total.” Even worse, “more than 90% of players and nearly all coaches and officials are white.” Even though hockey is popular in areas where most of the people are white (such as Canada and Russia), the NHL vowed to make concerted efforts to recruit all those would-be hockey stars from Venezuela and Nigeria.
The NBA is 73% black, the NFL is 56 percent black. One could go on and on, but it would be pointless. Everyone knows that blacks dominate the world of sport. Seeking “racism” in this environment would be like looking for anti-Asian bias in university physics departments. Good luck.
But to return to the question: is there anyone who seriously wants to watch an ESPN series on (fictitious) racism in sports? I don’t think so. Disney and its ESPN subsidiary may have forgotten the fact, but ESPN’s audience consists pretty much exclusively of sports fans, who 1) don’t watch television to be lectured on “racism,” and 2) know better. Kendi’s series is doomed to be another money-losing Disney venture that sinks without a trace.