For many reasons which I will explain later, I haven’t written in my blog. But the forces of Jeremy Lin have urged me to get this done and out.
As I am writing this, I am sure a zillion other articles are being written about Jeremy Lin, each with their own spin. I’d firstly like to say I am writing this, not for anybody, but for my own personal record so I don’t forget. I do hope though that in my writing, further discussions continue beyond Jeremy, and more importantly what’s wrong and right with our world. It’s already happening, and I hope to contribute to that.
This is a theory I believe in of why things become successful. Jeremy Lin was likely a already a great player before they played him that fateful day, and all that he had done before and worked on culminated in his success on the court. It was only a matter of time for someone like him, an Asian American to break the mold, the stereotypes, the system because his true abilities, which were grossly underestimated and the result: the excitement, the happiness, the reinvigoration, has been a clear example of how much surrounding pent up demand there was for someone to do it. The scariness of the Jeremy Lin story is that this guy didn’t have to be just like or as good as any other star point guard to break the system, he had to be SUPER star point guard to be recognized by the world’s premier basketball league.
No options left
The forces around him also converged to let him play creating the right opportunity for him to showcase his talent. The unfortunate thing(or in Lin’s case fortunate) was the only way for someone of his high caliber to break the system was because the Knicks had no resort but to let him play. Melo and Amare were out, they were having another losing season. I bet for sure Mike D was thinking, “what the hell, I’ll probably be fired next season, why not let the scrawny Asian play?” It certainly wasn’t, “Wow this kid is talented, let’s put him in now before it’s too late!” Well Jeremy most likely saved Mike’s job, and the Knicks whole team, MSG and their stock price, and even the NBA. Perhaps the world and our faith?
An Already Broken System
The harder truth about the system is that it was already broken. It wasn’t working. No one cared much about basketball since Michael Jordan. Kobe, as good, gifted, and talented as a player as he is, nowhere near commands the type of passion for the game as someone like Jeremy. Jeremy is a true underdog story that you can’t manufacture or replicate.
Supercapitalism – in athletics
But that it was these “capitalists” try to do: copy, replicate, craft and contrive success rather than do the work, take real risks, and cultivate it. Success is something to be earned, not created. The result of this super capitalism is it produced a Kobe. Somebody saw early on, that Kobe given his gifts and very much likeness to Jordan crafted his stardom, molding him to be the next Jordan. A guy, who started too early in the NBA and never really had to work and earn his pedigree. How much do you think Kobe appreciates his success? More importantly, how many other players were overlooked because scouts are looking for the next LeBron James, overlooking skill, teamwork, personality, dedication, desire for raw physique.
No fault of any but ourselves
We can’t blame anybody especially white people for our perceptions. People of all races and color assume a lot of things. Having lived out in Hong Kong for several years, I can tell you Asians are just as racist as any other race if not more. And you can’t blame or expect a business exec(white, black, Asian, or purple) for not casting or playing an Asian for something because at the end of the day, they are risking their money and time. Who do you think they are going to bet on?
What we can do
And well, it’s already happening with Jeremy Lin, we’ve finally been given the chance. That we will come out and support true talent and get excited about these things and that will translate to real dollars: Merchandise, tourism, ticket sales, etc.
The proof is already there, we can influence what happens with our own dollars and be an unstoppable FORCE and a VOICE to be heard across the world.
And step up
Take the risks, the shots when given the opportunity, just like Jeremy without any regrets, even in the midst of nobody ever doing what he did before. The uncertainty of being the first. Leading up to your string of wins, and still even there have been a lot of naysayers, talking down on you by calling you “kid”, a lot of backhanded praise from people who think they’ve made it, and quite frankly, this makes me angry, you’ve taken greater risks than most people ever do, so I don’t know how anybody can call you anything but a person we can all learn from, draw strength from, and admire. In my book, you’ve already made it, so just enjoy the ride.