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Maoist International Movement


The following article is taken from the bi-monthly Maoist International Movement Notes. What propaganda techniques and logical fallacies, if any, can you identify?

Los Angeles Lakers are no role models for the oppressed

In February, 2002, Shaquille O'Neal, the gigantic basketball player of the championship team the Los Angeles Lakers will finish his class in law enforcement. When he's not playing basketball he attends a sheriff's class that aims at building the reserve police force for the ports of Los Angeles. Shaq has said that his long-term goal is become a sheriff. He is already an honorary deputy in Florida. Shaq is a multi-millionaire, not just a seven-digit one either. His paying for smashed police cars in Los Angeles after he won his first championship and his wanting to join law enforcement is purely political. Out for three games for taking a swing at another player as we write this January 17th, Shaq received high praise from Kobe, the other star of the Lakers, in regard to the fight suspension "I love you" were his only words.

Kobe and Shaq appear to have patched things up since last we wrote on this subject. In previous articles in MIM Notes, we argued over the nature of the basketball elite, especially regarding last year's Shaq versus Kobe flap. MIM pointed out that it is our line to promote the masses' own activity instead of worshiping bourgeois stars. Members of the Black bourgeoisie such as the Los Angeles Lakers should only be gauged as "national bourgeoisie" and a part of the "united front," after they have proved their merit in actions. We cannot expect that those businesspeople with so many white customers like Shaq does will take independent stances.

We cannot point to anything about the Los Angeles Lakers at this moment that deserves some kind of political defense. The ruling class media does love them, and for good reason as Shaq's support for the police makes clear. Shaq lives in a country with the highest imprisonment rate in the world and with especially high rates for Black people. Thanks to Shaq and other politically well-behaved Black entertainers, the rulers and oppressor nation can go on believing it's no big deal to keep on with the status quo. Shaq and others are trying to convince people there's no need for big changes to eliminate the underlying causes of crime and unjust imprisonment. Most insidious of all is that Shaq will influence the people with the most to lose in this prison-state.