The Writings of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is an American icon, legendary NBA champion and recipient of the 2016 Presidential Medal of Freedom. Among his long list of accomplishments, he is the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, a 6x NBA champion, the league’s only 6x MVP and recipient of 2 Columnist of the Year Awards in (2017 & 2018) by the Southern California Journalism Awards.

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Op-Ed: Don’t understand the protests? What you’re seeing is people pushed to the edge

May 30, 2020

What was your first reaction when you saw the video of the white cop kneeling on George Floyd’s neck while Floyd croaked, “I can’t breathe”? If you’re white, you probably muttered a horrified, “Oh, my God” while shaking your head at the cruel injustice. If you’re black, you probably leapt to your feet, cursed, maybe…

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"Kareem’s op-ed on racism resonated hugely with our readers as few pieces have done. More than 3 million people read the piece on our website."

Sue Horton OpEd Editor LA Times

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Where Is the Outrage Over Anti-Semitism in Sports and Hollywood?

July 20, 2020

  The Hollywood Reporter columnist calls out the hateful outbursts against Jews by Ice Cube, DeSean Jackson and others and explains how the muted response “perpetuates racism” and contributes to an overall “Apatholypse.” The Hollywood Reporter: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar on Hollywood & Politics View Full Article

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Op-Ed: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: How to sustain momentum for the anti-racism movement

July 7, 2020

“I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear.” My old UCLA coach, John Wooden, used to quote that Walt Whitman poem often, and I’ve been hearing its echoes on the streets lately. The people out protesting systemic racism and vowing change are “singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs” about the America that could be…

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Why ‘Gone With the Wind’ Needs a Warning Label, Not a Ban

June 15, 2020

The Hollywood Reporter’s columnist says that though such racist content is damaging, “we need a way to present art within its historical context so the works can still be available and appreciated for their achievements but not admired for their cultural failings.” I have mixed feelings on John Ridley’s well-reasoned Los Angeles Times Op-Ed article asking HBO…

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s 6 Best Morale-Boosting TV Dramas for People of Color

June 9, 2020

In a world under siege, writes The Hollywood Reporter columnist and NBA great, “Good shows can boost a community’s morale and self-esteem — and make them feel connected to people like them and valued by people not like them.” We like to think adversity brings out the best in people, but usually it only brings…

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Op-Ed: Don’t understand the protests? What you’re seeing is people pushed to the edge

May 30, 2020

What was your first reaction when you saw the video of the white cop kneeling on George Floyd’s neck while Floyd croaked, “I can’t breathe”? If you’re white, you probably muttered a horrified, “Oh, my God” while shaking your head at the cruel injustice. If you’re black, you probably leapt to your feet, cursed, maybe…

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The Hollywood Reporter: Jeff Goldblum, Dr. Phil and the Clumsy Art of Celebrity Contrition

May 6, 2020

After saying something dangerous or ignorant, public figures tend to double down or give snarky non-apologies. The Hollywood Reporter columnist Kareem Abdul-Jabbar offers them some advice. One of Jeff Goldblum’s most famous movie lines is from Jurassic Park, when, as Dr. Ian Malcolm, he admonishes: “Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could,…

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What Sports Can Teach Us about Dealing with Coronavirus

April 22, 2020

Like most kids in America, I was taught that sports is more than just physical exercise, it’s also where we learn about fair play, self-discipline, how to be a good winner as well as a good loser, and how to bounce back from defeat and disappointment. Although religion, movies, TV, and novels passively teach us…

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The Hollywood Reporter: Trump’s Coronavirus Reaction Reminds of ‘Hunters’ Nazi Conspiracy

March 18, 2020

Christopher Saunders (‘Hunters’) The president’s blame-the-black-guy rhetoric and foot-dragging behavior have the same result as the Amazon show’s gleefully unrepentant Nazis’, and his racist failures and lack of leadership will be his legacy. In Amazon’s enthralling thriller series Hunters, leftover German Nazis from World War II are living the high life in America while planning a…

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The Guardian: Why suspending the NBA season was a glorious act of patriotism

March 15, 2020

The NBA has led by example and put public health above self-interest, which is more than the Trump administration can say Those too busy emptying the Costco shelves of hand sanitizer and toilet paper might have missed the news that the National Basketball Association has suspended the season due to the coronavirus pandemic. Other professional and…

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The Hollywood Reporter: Kobe Bryant, Gayle King and Why Black Words Matter

February 13, 2020

Lintao Zhang/Getty Images (Kobe Bryant) Threatening and demeaning King for examining the late basketball player’s complicated legacy, writes The Hollywood Reporter columnist, fosters a “climate of disrespect” that Bryant himself would have never wanted. When Kobe Bryant died, African Americans lost a beloved and influential member of their community and Americans of all colors lost a major role…

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