Oh. Wait. That’s not entirely correct. Thomas penned an article undermining Woods’ historic Masters win.
Why? Because Woods apparently doesn’t engage in enough racial identity politics for Thomas’ tastes.
To be clear, while the greatest basketball player of all time took the time to congratulate Woods on his win, a nine-year role player who mostly toiled away on the Washington Wizards believes Woods’ accomplishments are hollow. Wow.
The title of Thomas’ article is “I’m glad Tiger Woods won the Masters, I just wish he stood up for the black community.” Right off the bat, it’s pretty evident that identity politics are about to play a major role in this piece.
As you read on, you learn that would be an understatement.
Right off the bat, Thomas denigrates Woods for not wanting race to define to him, comparing Tiger to former Buffalo Bills star O.J. Simpson.
“Tiger’s rejection of our community, like OJ Simpson before him, comes with a price. Black people can and do revel in the meaning of his extraordinary triumph, but we’re not cheering him,” Thomas wrote.
It’s worth pointing out the irony that someone who says he wants to empower the black community is implying that black people are all of a hive mind mentality and shouldn’t be allowed to think for themselves.
It doesn’t take long for Thomas to pivot to politics. The former Wizard made his feelings on President Donald Trump abundantly clear.
“The fact that Tiger has stood unapologetically alongside Donald Trump is particularly troubling to me,” Thomas wrote. He then launched into a bizarre and hypocritical defense of his hit piece on Woods.
“Now let me say I have absolutely no problem with Woods voicing a political opinion that differs from mine,” he said. “I’m not a person who wants to silence anyone who has an opinion or supports a position that I don’t agree with and attempt to discredit them, demean them or personally attack them in any way shape or form.”
That last bit might’ve held some credence had Thomas not followed up with this gem:
“When you align yourself with someone like Trump, you’re condoning a man who is exactly what former ESPN commentator Jemele Hill called him: a white supremacist or a supporter of white supremacy and white nationalism.”
If that’s not a discrediting and demeaning personal attack, what is?
“When you boast about being longtime friends with Trump, when you accept the Presidential Medal of Freedom that he is giving you at least in part because of your professed allegiance to him, you are in fact choosing a side,” Thomas continued. “Trump has a well-documented history of looking to inject himself into the national discourse and praise the people, especially the black people, who publicly praise him. So Trump will publicly support Jim Brown and Kanye West and Steve Harvey and Ray Lewis and Tiger Woods because they have publicly kissed the ring. He will use them each as his Black Friend who agrees with him and supports him and loves him (a thing I still can’t believe Jim Brown actually said).
“But Trump honors these athletes and showers them with awards out of self-interest: because he thinks honoring those who pledge fealty to him will entice others to do the same. The implication being, of course, that you’ll be subject to his wrath if you choose another direction.”
It seems that by merely associating with the president, Woods has betrayed the black community, in Thomas’ view.
“It’s this alliance which personally makes Tiger’s win at the Masters a little bittersweet because I’ve seen this all before,” he wrote.
The retired NBA player then proceeded to compare Simpson and Woods as two people who rejected the black community because they didn’t want to be classified only by their race.
Apparently, it’s the gravest of sins for Simpson to want to be a “great running back” and not a “black running back.”
For simply being friends with Trump and wanting to be a “great golfer” and not a “black golfer,” Woods is tainted and his Masters win is problematic, according to Etan Thomas.
That says a lot more about Thomas than it does about Woods.
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