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Monday, October 19, 2009

Two Year Old Tiger Woods On The Mike Douglas Show

Posted by patrick

By Cyndi Whittel

In the mid to late 90's Tiger Woods, the 21-year-old golf star was given the nick name the "Great Black Hope", the putter-wielding equivalent of Martin Luther King Jr. Pundits waxed poetic about the cosmic social significance of Woods' magnificent feat. "I am Tiger Woods" ads seemed to gain much control of the airwaves. Coinciding with the fiftieth anniversary celebrations of Jackie Robinson's breaking of baseball's color line, an event of much greater significance: Woods' coronation as the Black Prince of the Country Club gave America a chance to engage in its favorite ritual, the recitation of warm (if not warm and fuzzy both) racial attitudes. While blacks celebrated the triumph of one of their own in a lily-white sport, whites wiped away tears and congratulated themselves on their remarkable progress. The choreographed racial minuet was proceeding as smoothly as a 30-second TV Nike spot.

Then, Tiger Woods said he wasn't "black" , at least not completely but that he was , in fact "Cablinasian." Woods made his remarks on "Oprah," when he was asked if it bothered him to be called an African-American. "Yes actually it does," he said. "Growing up, I came up with a name: I'm a 'Cablinasian.'" As in Caucasian-black-Indian-Asian. Woods has a black father (or to be precise, if I am interpreting Woods' reported ancestry correctly, a black and American Indian, white father) and a Thai mother (or with the same caveat, a half-Thai, half-Chinese mother). "I'm just who I am," Woods told Oprah Winfrey, "whoever you see in front of you."

But just "who I am" remained contested ground. According to Time magazine, Woods' coming out as a Cablinasian caused "a mini-racial firestorm ... Woods' remarks infuriated many African Americans who now see him as a traitor. Some blacks saw Woods' assertion of a multiracial identity as a sellout that could touch off an epidemic of "passing". Light-skinned Colin Powell, responded to Woods' comments with: "In America, which I love from the depths of my heart and soul, when you look like me, you're black."

No one can deny Tiger Wood's is the best golfer of his generation and it's interesting to note that this little "Cablinasian" 2 year old could hit the ball with his child size golfing equipment even at the young age two as seen in the following video. Notice how little Tiger swings his golf irons similar to the way in which he does now only with more precision and grace.

While I'm not putting forward Tiger Woods as a role model, racial or otherwise. I don't know anything about him, except that he seems to respect both of his parents, is an athletic prodigy who is a masterful self-marketer, and is given to telling dumb black-men-have-big-dicks jokes in slick men's magazines. But whoever Woods really is behind the scenes, his refusal to be pigeon holed into a single racial category points the way out of the dualistic rigidity and emotional hysteria that has led America into a racial impasse. By choosing to embrace all of who he is: an entity for which there is no name, except one that sounds like a tribe from an imaginary country from the movie Narnia, Woods, the goofy 21-year-old with the golden-brown skin and the near to perfect swing, has become a messenger for a larger truth: Our race does not make us who we are.

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