It's almost as if a distraction was needed. Is the elder Jesse running interference for his son by publicly saying that Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert has a "slave master mentality" with respect to James, who Jackson says Gilbert views as a "runaway slave". Eugene Kane at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel sees Jackson's assertion as ill-advised:
Raising his voice in support of James by evoking slavery seems like a foolish move.If Jackson was truly concerned about racism, why isn't he speaking out against Rod Blagojevich, who is heard countless times on recorded phone conversations, played at his corruption trial, referring to Jesse Jackson Jr. as an "uber African-American"? The answer to that one is rather obvious if you've been following the trial. Jesse Jackson Jr., despite his indignant and adamant declarations to the contrary shortly after Blagojevich's arrest on December 9th, 2008 is revealed in recorded phone conversations to have offered money to Blagojevich in return for being appointed to Barack Obama's then soon-to-be vacant Senate seat.
James has been paid millions in salary and endorsements since joining the NBA seven years ago. During his free agent excursion, he had the owners of several professional teams courting him for his services.
Sorry, Jesse; this guy is no slave.
The timing of Jackson Sr.'s ludicrous claims is indeed curious. Even more ludicrous are his comments during an appearance on the Ed Schultz program. Listen as Jesse tells Ed that if Gilbert's claim that James often "quit" during games is a serious charge and would amount to a "scandal". The real scandal is going on in a Chicago courtroom and Jesse Jackson Jr. is in the middle of it. Then Jesse Sr. lectures Ed's audience about integrity and cheating before wrapping up with a reference to child rearing.
Jesse Sr. is 3 for 3 on that one - scandal, integrity, and offspring. He just has the wrong controversy and it's by design.
h/t to Hot Air for the video.