Paul-Finkelman at UTULSA.EDU
Thu Aug 10 11:35:17 PDT 2000
Mark's point on race and sports is even more true in basketball and boxing. Boxing promoters have for years been looking for a "Great White Hope" to take on the "bad black champions." It still goes on.
In baseketball the best white college players go quickly in the draft and at a premium for the economic reasons Mark suggests.
All this may suggest that as a society we place a premium on whiteness, which affects everything in our culture. Affirmative action in some form or other may provide a counter-balance.
Chapman Distinguished Professor
University of Tulsa College of Law
3120 East Fourth Place
Tulsa, OK 74104
E-mail: paul-finkelman at utulsa.edu
Mark Graber wrote:
> Actually, race turns out to be a qualification in baseball and other sports.
> 1. There was a some statistical work done in the 1980s indicating that when every relevant statistic was controlled for, whiteness still had a signficant positive influence on salary. The work (forgotten the author) also indicated taht marginal players were far more likely to be white than persons of color.
> 2. Whiteness may also matter because in addition to winning, the object of professional sports is to obtain revenue. More white people have money than persons of color, and while there are lots of exceptions, overall some reason exists for thinking that white people identify more with white players. Hence, again a reason why race seems to matter at the margin in spots, particularly baseball.
> 3. On a different front. Some players seem to flourish better in environments where their language is spoken. It is hardly unheard of for teams to have coaches or marginal players for the specific reason of keeping a star company.
> In short, race is not a qualification in baseball may be a normative ideal. it does not describe baseball at present.
More information about the Conlawprof