Charles Barkley says politicians seek to divide people based on race to “keep their grasp on money and power.”
Barkley, a former athlete who is an analyst on Inside the NBA, said he finds “most white people and black people are great people,” but politicians benefit by pitting them against one another.
“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,” he said during a CBS broadcast prior to Saturday evening’s March Madness games. “They divide and conquer.”
Barkley said politicians don’t have to live with the consequences of racial division because they don’t live in the neighborhoods affected by their actions.
“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,” he added.
The subjects of race and diversity have gained renewed scrutiny in the wake of a new voting law in Georgia that critics argue will hamper voting access for racial minorities.
“There is no middle ground here. You either are for more people voting, or you want to suppress the vote,” Kenneth Chenault, a former chief executive of American Express, said while pressuring Georgia-based corporations to oppose the new legislation. “This impacts all Americans, but we also need to acknowledge the history of voting rights for African-Americans. And as African American executives in corporate America, what we were saying is we want corporate America to understand that, and we want them to work with us.”
Many corporations with ties to the state issued statements condemning the new law, and Major League Baseball announced on Friday that it would move its All-Star Game and 2021 draft from Atlanta in protest, a move celebrated by many on the Left, including former President Barack Obama.
“Home run,” actress Ellen Barkin tweeted in response to the news.
Despite widespread approval of MLB’s decision from Democrats, several Republicans were miffed by the announcement, pointing to the baseball organization’s partnership with China, which has been accused of human rights abuses and ethnic cleansing of Uyghur Muslims, as evidence of hypocrisy.