September 30, 2011

This day in Salon's reverse racist stupidity

Salon has lots of good columns and news stories, not even counting the always-good often-great Glenn Greenwald.

Today, though? Two pieces of total dreck.

David Sirota alleges white home-plate umpires could be racist against black pitchers, without providing much solid evidence. Yes, most umps are white. Baseball as a sport has become somewhat whiter and much more Hispanic, though, and especially on the mound. The QuestTec "evidence" is thin even bey Sirota standards. And, the discrepancy between QuesTec and non-QuesTec plate-calling is likely multicausal, with racial bias playing a small part, if at all, and certainly not the primary one.

Reality? First, the study is more nuanced than Sirota's screed. Second, it just relates to pitchers and umps; no real effect was shown by the race of the batter. True, the pitcher is a "constant" that the batter isn't, but the batter is a lot closer to the ump, to "remind" him of race issues. Third, speaking of, anecdotally, I think minority pitchers are a smaller percentage than minority hitters. Finally, statistical correlation is NOT causal correlation, especially in something with several factors involved. Read the actual study.

Finally, the study mentions what Sirota "conveniently skims over": that minority umps allegedly do it, too. Sirota's column is about bias against minorities only, even talking about "white privilege" in the sentence after noting the study said "minorities do it too." What an asshat.

Then, a black guest columnist, in what I am going to bluntly call reverse racism, takes Gene Lyons to task for a previous column of his, where he took an Obamiac writing in The Nation to task as part of his story on how many black liberals are getting antsy about Dear Leader. Saying that you're dropping the "Muthafuckas" from your original version to be polite to whitey is playing to a stereotype of race itself; to deliberately invoke that is ... reverse racism.

Frankly, speaking of ... both these columns would be better placed IN The Nation.

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