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Looks like I’m going to owe my friend Corey $100 because at the beginning of this NBA season, he took the Heat to win it all and I took the Lakers.

Luckily, there’s a “no pay for a push” clause so even though I can’t win, I still might not lose provided the Heat don’t win it.

But I’m actually hoping to lose my cash and for two reasons:

1) I believe that if the Heat win it this year, they’ll have “shot their load” clearing the way for my Knicks to win the NBA title next year.

2) The essence of what America’s supposed to be about can be summed up with the words: “LeBron James: NBA Champion.”

We know that America pays lip service to “freedom.” Slaveowners have given us great expressions like “the land of the free and the home of the brave,” “all men are created equal” and “give me liberty or give me death.”

Those words were used to make men aspire to freedom.

They were not, however, used with the intention that men would actually attain freedom.

A free man would be unbearable. A free man would move and think and act on his own accord.

There could be no laws to govern a free man, save his own morality.

Worst of all, a free man would be a constant reminder of the restraints that hold the rest of us in place.

But now that we’re all actually “witnessing”— and genuinely this time — a man in the throes of complete freedom, we’re also coming to realize just how vile, repulsive and ugly it is to watch.

Everything about LeBron James is wrong by traditional American standards.

The Founding Fathers would be aghast!

Not only is this big, Black buck not picking cotton somewhere, but he actually gets to keep all the money that he makes—for himself!—he’s chosen not only his own vocation, but the location of that vocation, and despite undoubtedly being subjected to just as much mental programming as the rest of us, he picked a pretty Black woman as his other half; nothing short of a fashion faux pas by the standards of today’s successful Black man.

Now while a demonstration of a free body and spirit may just be sickening, a demonstration of a free mind is an absolute abomination.

Our problem with the free however, isn’t just the personal affront they represent, but also the fact that we always have a better idea of how they should use their freedom than they seem to have.

Prototypical of this idea is Michael Jordan who famously said that if presented with the opportunity like LeBron’s, he “would have never called up Larry (Bird), called up Magic (Johnson) and said ‘hey, let’s get together and play on one team… I was trying to beat those guys.’”

Clearly Jordan’s mad that not everybody’s trying to be “like Mike.”

But back to the action: I watched Game 4 of the Heat-Celtics series and started yelling when LeBron scored on Paul Pierce after having had his back turned to the basket.

“Finally!” I screamed. “I’ve been watching this guy for 8 years and the first time I’ve seen him use a post-up move! If I was 6’8″, 260…”

See that?

Even I have to catch myself sometimes…


A Black man defends Dan Gilbert