Former NBA star sets out on a mission to discover why America is so divided along racial lines
Former NBA star Charles Barkley says he’s ready to tackle race in America. The Inside the NBA analyst for TNT will star in a new television series as he travels the country exploring racial division. The working title of the new series is The Race Card.
The series will begin airing early in 2017.
TNT is promoting the new show as an opportunity for Barkley to offer blunt opinions on race. In a news release TNT said:
“NBA legend and Inside the NBA analyst Charles Barkley has had enough. The America that he knew has lost its way, becoming mired in partisan politics, social divides and entrenched corporate interests. Now he hopes to get to the root of the problem in the new limited-run series The Race Card.”
TNT has ordered six hour-long episodes of the show. Barkley is expected to have full editorial control over the project.
“Barkley will put ideas on their feet, with real-world proof-of-concept tests that will engage people and expose the truth behind their closely held beliefs,” TNT said in the release. “In the end, Barkley will reach his own conclusions guided only by his own wits and common-sense wisdom.”
“We as Americans never discuss the issue of race in this country and how it impacts everything in our lives until something bad happens. I see this project as a way to talk about race, class and cultural differences and challenge everyone’s status quo.'”
The new show arrives as many athletes and former athletes are starting to speak out on social matters. Some athletes, including WNBA stars, have been showing up for press conferences wearing “Black Lives Matters” T-shirts.
Michael Jordan recently donated $1 million to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and $1 million to the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s Institute for Community-Police Relations.
Seattle Seahawks’ player Michael Bennett has also come out in support of Black Lives Matter and has called out other NFL players including 2015 MVP Cam Newton to do the same.