Monday, May 07, 2007

Reparations Refereeing

The New York Times recently published news of "[a]n academic study of the National Basketball Association, whose playoffs continue tonight, suggests that a racial bias found in other parts of American society has existed on the basketball court as well." The conclusion was that white referees are more apt to call black players for fouls, than white players.
. . . Justin Wolfers, an assistant professor of business and public policy at Penn's Wharton School, and Joseph Price, a Cornell graduate student in economics, said the difference in calls "is large enough that the probability of a team winning is noticeably affected by the racial composition of the refereeing crew."

The study, conducted over a 13-season span through 2004, found that the racial makeup of a three-man officiating crew affected calls by up to 4½ percent. More...
After reading this article, I swung into action to correct this wretched injustice being perpetrated against these unwary steroidal millionaires. I have approached NBA commissioner David Stern (and have yet to officially hear back from him, but he will doubtless endorse and take up my ideas) about "refereeing reparations."

The way these reparations will work is -- for the next five years (seasons) no fouls will be called against black NBA players. If a situation arises where one black player appears to foul another black player (according to the racist rules of the game before the reparation seasons), a tribunal made up of delegates from African nations at the U.N. and former black NBA players will render real-time decisions from New York.

Where reparations refereeing really gets down to correcting past injustices is the reevaluation all previous championships. The number of fouls assigned to black players will be brought into balance with the number of fouls attributed to white players. To make amends for the years of wrongs, all fouled black players will be given an additional free-throw. Because it's impossible to travel back in time, their free-throw averages will be used to calculate how many of those additional free-throws they would have made, and all game scores will be adjusted accordingly.

A bank of 300 Rancour 1188 Quintuple Core computers has been working on this job of recalculating the actual scores of these past seasons. Most importantly, all past championships will be awarded to their proper winners (purists might be somewhat put out to find teams assigned championships in years before they formally existed, and other teams being awarded championships after they ceased to exist. If we're going to right a wrong, the purists are just going to have to live with this):

1946–47 Philadelphia

1947–48 Baltimore

1948–49 Minneapolis

1949–50 Minneapolis

1950–51 Rochester

1951–52 Minneapolis

1952–53 Minneapolis

1953–54 Minneapolis

1954–55 Syracuse

1955–56 Philadelphia

1956–57 Detroit

1957–58 St. Louis

1958–59 Detroit

1959–60 Detroit

1960–61 Detroit

1961–62 Detroit

1962–63 Detroit

1963–64 Detroit

1964–65 Detroit

1965–66 Detroit

1966–67 Philadelphia

1967–68 Detroit

1968–69 Detroit

1969–70 New York

1970–71 Milwaukee

1971–72 Baltimore

1972–73 New York

1973–74 Detroit

1974–75 Golden State

1975–76 Detroit

1976–77 Portland

1977–78 Washington

1978–79 Seattle

1979–80 Baltimore

1980–81 Detroit

1981–82 Baltimore

1982–83 Philadelphia

1983–84 Detroit

1984–85 Baltimore

1985–86 Detroit

1986–87 Baltimore

1987–88 Baltimore

1988–89 Detroit

1989–90 Detroit

1990–91 Chicago

1991–92 Chicago

1992–93 Chicago

1993–94 Houston

1994–95 Houston

1995–96 Chicago

1996–97 Chicago

1997–98 Chicago

1998–99 Detroit

1999-2000 Baltimore

2000-01 Baltimore

2001-02 Baltimore

2002-03 Detroit

It's my hope that the NBA will soon sit down with Paul Wolfowitz of the World Bank to begin negotiating the massive transfer of championship bonuses and championship rings to their rightful recipients. We cannot pick and choose who deserves justice in this world. Steroidal millionaires are just as worthy of our sympathy and proactive problem-solving as the residents or refugees of any impoverished nation.