Offended at any Price…
You’d think there was enough offensive behavior going on in the world performed by people who are honestly careless, crass, or hateful that people wouldn’t feel the need to go and manufacture an offense. There’s plenty of real, live racism out there. There’s no need to go cooking some up from nothing, unless (of course) you’re trying to get yourself into a newspaper or an elected office. Of all the places I remain competely confident that lack a racist overtone, a chessboard nears the top of the list. That’s right, a chessboard. You know the game, square board, 64 equal-sized squares alternating a light and a dark color, with game pieces of 6 types in 2 teams again in a light and a dark color. In the flat color palette available in the 15th century, the lightest color available was white. The darkest was black. Both colors occurred naturally in the world so they were obvious choices for the game. That’s it – no politics, no race issues, no grand socio-economic themes. Just 2 colors commonly available and easily produced.
Until, that is, some idiot with too much time on his hands and an over-inflated sense of self-importance got an idea to make himself a story. To him, chess is an inherently racist game, portraying white as superior because in the rules of the game, white moves first. What an arrogant asshat. People who know what the hell they’re talking about know that chess is reputed to have originated around 600 AD. The writings we have from that time refer to the game although some research indicates it might have existed as early as 100 AD. It came from there, in the area now the northern part of India, across Persia to the commercial centers in Italy and Spain. The version we know today was basically codified around 1400 AD.
That’s a helluva lot longer ago than the slave trade started up to the Caribbean and American shores, bud. You want to find racism, how about looking at the arguments of people who see it any time they look at something white? Until then, leave the honorable game of logic alone.