Obama: Rap and Basketball Not a Good Substitute for School
Commentary by Tony Sarrecchia T-Files
-Updated for typos-
“You're probably not that good a rapper. Maybe you're the next Lil Wayne, but probably not. In which case you need to stay in school.” So said Barack Obama while talking to a predominately black crowd in Powder Springs Georgia.
Obama was cautioning students to stay in school and not pin their hopes on a music career or a shot at the NBA. Obama, using a refreshing specific and concrete language rather than his usual empty rhetoric, told them that most of “you brothas” are not “really, really good basketball players,” adding “I know you think you are. But you’re not. You are overrated in your own mind. You will not play in the NBA.”
Kudos to Obama for the direct approach—now if he would just tell wanna-be gangstas to pull up their pants...(that also goes for the white kids in the burbs. Oh, and while we're at it, turn down the car stereo.)
Obama knows about basketball. Jaymes Song, writing for the AP (http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gwsvGknQXu2SINnNoGWy3G2GAuTQD91BB4TG0) said high school b-baller Obama was known as the “Obomber” for his jump shot. Despite that, Obama was delegated to the reserve squad. Obama's high school coach said Obama may have started on any other team, but “We just happened to have just a team that was pretty loaded."
In retrospect, Obama knew his limitations: "I could play basketball with a consuming passion that would always exceed my limited talent." (http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gwsvGknQXu2SINnNoGWy3G2GAuTQD91BB4TG0)
Obama stills plays, saying that he would like to put a court in the White House.
He went on to tell the students in Georgia that knowing a foreign language would also increase their chances at future employment. (So would pulling up their pants, but perhaps I am fixating).
This was Obama's first visit to Georgia and part of his “Red State Express”. By visiting the so-called red states he hopes to gain ground in those states that are trending to Republican contender John McCain.