Today, we will witness something that many Americans never thought they’d live to see: a Chicago White Sox fan taking the Oath of Office.
White Sox fans have traditionally lived many places. Several live in “the big house” — and I don’t mean Michigan Stadium. Others, in “mobile homes.” And some Sox fans, why, they don’t have homes at all, unless freight cars count.
So let there be no doubt about it. When people say that this is a historic day, there is no hyperbole involved. A White Sox fan in the White House. Who’d have thunk it?
Oh, it also turns out that Mr. Obama is of African-American descent. This is kind of a big deal, since as the name “White House” implies, it has only been inhabited by white people.
Which got me to thinking: now that we have a black president, what racial barriers are left for us to overcome as a nation? (This is tongue-in-cheek people, please don’t start rattling off lists.)
Certainly, there is room to grow in some areas, like the number of black head coaches in college football. But even Yale has addressed that issue, so clearly progress is being made in that department. (Plus, Auburn’s hiring of Gene Chizik over Turner Gill or anyone remotely competent wasn’t an insult to blacks, it was an insult to everyone of every race who has a brain, including the majority of Tiger fans.)
Even the whitest sport in North America, hockey, has a star black player in Jarome Iginla of the Calgary Flames.
So, it would appear that there is but one area left in sports where racial barriers have yet to be forcibly shattered. That’s right, I’m talking about placekickers. If the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition isn’t going to pick up this banner, then let us at Rumors and Rants do the work.
A quick look around the NFL has determined that every single kicker is white. A look at NCAA Division I-A rosters would give you essentially the same result. The lone exception, as far as my research can tell, is Maryland kicker Obi Egekeze. And he was a senior this year, so unless he makes it to the NFL, it appears there might not be anyone to fill his shoes.
In fact, outside of former Buccaneers great Donald Igwebuike (in those days it didn’t take much to be a Bucs great), I don’t recollect there ever being another black kicker in the NFL.
Will we see this lily-white position become more diverse over the course of our lifetimes?
Yes, we may. After all, anything is possible.