Kyle Korver Talks Racism and Privilege in Players’ Tribune Article

Kyle Korver with the Utah Jazz
Photo Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

If you logged on to any form of social media today, you probably saw Kyle Korver’s Players’ Tribune piece. Somebody probably shared it or commented on it. It was mentioned on ESPN five minutes ago when I was flipping through the channels.

The former Sixer wrote an article called “Privileged,” which dives into racism in the NBA and American society as a whole. He starts by telling a story about Thabo Sefolosha, who was drafted by Sixers in 2006 before being traded for to the Chicago Bulls. Sefolosha was involved in an incident with New York police several years ago, when they broke his leg in an altercation stemming from a nightclub stabbing.

Writes Korver:

Anyway — on the morning I found out that Thabo had been arrested, want to know what my first thought was? About my friend and teammate? My first thought was: What was Thabo doing out at a club on a back-to-back??

Yeah. Not, How’s he doing? Not, What happened during the arrest?? Not, Something seems off with this story. Nothing like that. Before I knew the full story, and before I’d even had the chance to talk to Thabo….. I sort of blamed Thabo.

I thought, Well, if I’d been in Thabo’s shoes, out at a club late at night, the police wouldn’t have arrested me. Not unless I was doing something wrong.


It’s not like it was a conscious thought. It was pure reflex — the first thing to pop into my head.

Sefolosha went to court and was found not guilty on charges of obstructing government, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. He sued the city of New York and won $4 million a settlement with the NYPD.

Korver continues by relating that story to the recent incident involving Russell Westbrook and a fan in Salt Lake City, where both Korver and Sefolosha now play. He talks about being a white guy in the NBA and how his views on systemic racism have evolved over the years.

He explains what he believes to be the difference between privilege and guilt, saying this, after the jump:

When it comes to racism in America, I think that guilt and responsibility tend to be seen as more or less the same thing. But I’m beginning to understand how there’s a real difference.

As white people, are we guilty for the sins of our forefathers? No, I don’t think so.

But are we responsible for them? Yes, I believe we are.

And I guess I’ve come to realize that when we talk about solutions to systemic racism — police reform, workplace diversity, affirmative action, better access to healthcare, even reparations? It’s not about guilt. It’s not about pointing fingers, or passing blame.

It’s about responsibility. It’s about understanding that when we’ve said the word “equality,” for generations, what we’ve really meant is equality for a certain group of people. It’s about understanding that when we’ve said the word “inequality,” for generations, what we’ve really meant is slavery, and its aftermath — which is still being felt to this day. It’s about understanding on a fundamental level that black people and white people, they still have it different in America. And that those differences come from an ugly history….. not some random divide.

I would have changed the wording of that fourth sentence, because I don’t think it matches the last paragraph there, but I get what he’s saying.

Anyway, it’s a good read, and if you have a minute I’d recommended checking out the article. It’s not too long, it should only take a few minutes.


49 Responses

  1. Don’t project your bleeding heart liberalism onto us. The democrat run inner cities, their utopias, are full of violence and poverty. I guess that’s the white mans fault?

      1. Quiet, boy. I know your opinion on every issue too, and it normally involves a hashtag.

    1. The Republicans run the most impoverished states in the country and not coincidentally the most backward and racist. Oh, and did I mention predominantly white?

      Korver’s piece was well written and compelling, so it’s no surprise the average mouth breathing Trumpanzee wouldn’t get where he’s coming from.

      1. What race commits the vast majority of violent crime in this country?

        I guess asking that is racist though.

        1. What gender commits the vast majority of violent crime in this country?

          I guess asking that is sexist though..

        2. They are 13% of the population and are responsible for 50% of the murders in the US. Quite a disparity

    2. If the undesirables don’t like it here, go back to your huts in Africa. No? You wanna stay here and collect free money from the gubament and whine about racism while you sit on your lazy asses? Sounds about right…

  2. I have white privilege too. The Chicago DA let me off the hook even though there was a boat load of evidence that proved I was guilty.

    1. Well we know Chicago is the most non-corrupt city in America, so you must be innocent. Don’t forget that the Obama’s helped get you off as well. Not literally, although I’m sure you’d love for that to have happened with barack

  3. This SOB Korver better not be trying to steal my “most woke white athlete” title

  4. Hey Kyle/Kevin/Whoever,

    Maybe take this article to heart and start banning the racist chuds in the comment section. No warnings, just permaban them.

    Everyone else

    1. Maybe we should round them up and send them to the gulags too!!!

      1. Saying racist shit=being a racist. Just because the venn diagram of trump chuds and racist chuds is a perfect circle doesn’t make them the same thing.

    2. Ban people for having opinions that don’t mirror yours. How very American of you. Liberals are terrible terrible people…

      1. See. That is the problem. People like you don’t understand the difference between facts and opinion.

        “You are ugly.” is an opinion.
        “You are stupid.” is a fact.

  5. Kyle Korver your PC White Privilege indoctrination is now complete. You may leave the re-education camp and rejoin society to spew your racial hatred.
    Please change your middle name of Kevin ASAP, those initials are a hate crime.

  6. All these MAGA dope racists LOVE this place. They can hide behind their snarky BS user names and can spew racist horsesh#t all day long. What did you expect? The only good thing about Trump is that a lot of these douchy white guys actually think it’s safe to step out into the light instead of hiding behind a computer.

    1. If i keep protesting, i'm sure i'll be able to get some money belonging to someone else because I myself am a lazy fuck. says:

      Okay ‘pal’. I mean after all YOU are to blame for Trump being the president.
      You did nominate that gas bag Clinto assuring WHOEVER ran against her would win.
      H Clinton couldn’t help but be a fuck up.

      We’ll remember what you said when you idiots put Oprah up for the nomination and then wonder
      why she doesn’t win.
      Liberals do dumb things like shaft Bernie Sanders just so a Clinton can have the nomination.
      Its in there nature to do the wrong thing and then complain about it…until they do the wrong things again.

      Is is true that Trump is a buffoon.
      But you put him there, so take the blame.

      1. There were over 10 Republicans who ran in the primaries. Some of them were not racists. But the Republicans all voted for the racist idiot in the primaries. Mostly because they were also racist idiots.

        1. It doesn’t matter who the republicans nominated in 2016.
          They would have beaten Clinton.
          People had had enough of those gas bag Clintons.
          with Slick WIllie getting impeached, sticking his wet cigar and spraying his wad on lewinskis face
          in the oval office. He was a laughing stock(like Trump is now).

          And then the democrats went and shafted bernie sanders and put another CLinton
          up for the nomination. potentially 8 more FN years with the lovable laughable clintons.
          Sorry bud, not going to happen.
          YOU HAVE YOURSELF TO BLAME for trump winning.
          Sanders would have beat Trump easy.

          I really like the protests against Trump after the election.
          That lasted about 2 days..until the starbucks opened.

          Liberals need to get their shit together or they will be crying the blues again.

          1. See. No explanation about how all of the Republicans voted for the racist white guy.

            There were heaps of Republicans who were qualified and weren’t racist. But you white racist guys all lined up to vote for the racist white guy who was completely unqualified. The liberals had their stuff together. But because we have an out dated electoral process that is designed to give more power to rural white people, And because all of the racist white people voted for a racist white guy, we got a racist white president.

        2. Including the millions who voted for obama, then voted for Trump. How fucking stupid do you sound?

          1. Yes. Every single person who voted for Trump is a racist. They were ok with him being racist. So that makes them racist. That is how it works.

  7. Korver should be lucky they didn’t discriminate against dullards.
    Like they did with me.

  8. Kyle Korver checking in from the land of the indoctrinated. 6 knuckleheads shot in Wilmington yesterday….guess that was my fault too, huh? Nonsense.

    1. 30 shootings in 30 hours this past weekend in Chicago. Need I say more??? You’re entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts

  9. So……..Lebron and KD and Steph, etc. also must benefit from “white” privilege”? These millionaires wanna cry racism and prejudice but yet they live in gated communities with millions. Must be nice to be so privileged. Korver’s washed up so he’s tryin to get the next espn gig

  10. getting preached to & or blamed gets old quick. and lumping everyone in together by race is truly ignorant or pandering to the lowest common denominator. if you see something – say something, if you hear someone say something bring it up to them, after that just play your game(s) & enjoy lifestyle it affords you. and if you feel guilty sell all your crap & move to the ‘hood…”tax payers welcome” in all major cities.

    most of these guys are delusional, example d-bag Lebron James saying the murder of Nipsey Hussle was “one of the most unfortunate events that has happened in American history.” did they teach history at the high school you went to? i think he later said he ranked it between the assignation of Abraham Lincoln & the 9/11 World Trade Center attack. what a narcissistic butt hole.

  11. Didn’t grow up rich. Had two married parents at home. Dad worked (at times) 3 separate jobs. I earned a doctorate. Have a great job live in a great area. No regrets. I guess this is white privilege.

    It starts at home. You cannot control the family situation or where you live when enter the world. All you can do is take advantage of opportunities put in front of you. It may take one or two generations to grow that seed. Marry well (not a shithead), educate yourself, work hard and don’t have kids early. It’s not that hard.

    I do not feel bad that I reap the benefits from my parents hard work and my own hard work.

    1. Yea. Pretty much what you said is the definition of white privilege.

      At least you seem to be aware of it.

  12. Allllll these comments confirm, (white male) hoooomans lack the understanding of nuance. Everyone trying to make points/counterpoints above are just aggregating up factoids ‘they read somewhere’ to try and persuade. The world is complex, everyone can struggle and during a lifetime WILL struggle…everyone. The issue this is trying to say is white america does judge the book by its cover a lot more often towards those of color than it does another white person (and the issue is behind closed doors most often). That is tribal and is wrong by and large in this civilized society. The goal is to evolve to where we don’t see the color, plain and simple. Almost always when reading the troll/baity comments here just envision a scared white male and wonder ‘why’? If its the all the perceived FREE stuff those of color are getting from ‘our hard work’ that bothers you — then go f’n help those in need to empower themselves so they no longer NEED the financial assistance (I am sure most everyone wants to feel meaningful/autonomous in some capacity). Society is only as strong as its weakest link….so actually help instead of whine since this issue goes no where until we all do. Remember this issue was ENTIRELY created/fostered by white america in the first place, so yeah it is on us to collectively deal with the responsibility (not guilt) and move the hell on by treating every color person with the same amount of respect. *Exits Soapbox*

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