Charles Barkley: Politicians 'Keep Power' by Making 'Whites & Blacks' Hate Each Other
NBA star says voters are 'stupid' to back leaders who exploit differences between people
Former NBA star Charles Barkley has accused politicians of fueling racial hatred between "whites and blacks," saying leaders are exploiting differences between people to "keep their grasp on money and power."
The basketball player-turned-analyst for “Inside the NBA” made the comments during the “Final Four Show” on CBS Saturday.
Barkley said that politicians intentionally fuel racial divides among voters and that the “system” is designed to foster hatred and “scramble the middle class.”
“Man, I think most white people and black people are great people,” Barkley said during coverage of Saturday’s March Madness games.
“I really believe that in my heart.”
Barkley then let rip on the elite, arguing that the political system is set up to protect the power and wealth of those in government.
“But I think our system is set up where our politicians, whether they’re Republicans or Democrats, are designed to make us not like each other, so they can keep their grasp [on] money and power,” Barkley said.
“They divide and conquer,” Barkley added, saying that people are “stupid” to follow politicians who create issues in communities they “don’t live in.”
“I truly believe in my heart most white people and black people are awesome people,” he added.
“But we are so stupid following our politicians, whether they are Republicans or Democrats, and their only job is, ‘Hey, let’s make these people not like each other. We don’t live in their neighborhoods. [We’ve] all got money. Let’s make the whites and blacks not like each other; let’s make rich people and poor people not like each other; let’s scramble the middle class.’”
“I truly believe that in my heart,” Barkley concluded.
Charles Barkley said that politicians are driving racial divisions for political gain.— Ian Haworth (@ighaworth) April 4, 2021
Fact-check: true. pic.twitter.com/F7B4YMA5zk
The Hall of Famer has long been known for his outspokenness.
Last summer Barkley addressed the nationwide Black Lives Matter rioting following the May 25 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.
Barkley accused professional athletes of turning the conversation about racism into a "circus."
"Instead of talking about racial equality, racial justice, and economic justice, we spend all our time worrying about who’s kneeling and not kneeling, what things are being said on buses, what’s being said on jerseys," he said in a July interview.
"I think we’re missing the point."