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Real World Graduation, Question 73: Basketball and NASCAR « EDDuvall.com

Real World Graduation, Question 73: Basketball and NASCAR

RealWorldGraduation_Question_73_Basketball_NASCAR   <– PDF

Two men, one white and one black, are being interviewed on TV.   The two men are successful engineers being honored for their inventions and contributions to technology.  The interviewer, who (as usual) understands nothing of the technology and inventions made by the two men, decides to spend most of the interview on subjects not related to the two engineers’ expertise, focusing instead on two sports: basketball and NASCAR racing.

It turns out that the white engineer hates both basketball and NASCAR racing; he hates basketball because it finds it monotonous, and also hates car racing because he thinks there are too many phony rich people involved in the sport.

The black engineer also hates both basketball and NASCAR racing; he hates basketball because he thinks there are too many phony rich people involved in the sport, and he finds NASCAR racing to be monotonous.

Suppose the interviewer asks both about basketball and NASCAR racing. What responses should the two engineers give?  This is a family-oriented show.

a) Everyone knows that engineers are nerds who should not waste our time giving opinions on anything. Both should simply lie, and say “I don’t know anything about either one” and hope that the interviewer finally asks a relevant question.

b) The black engineer should give his honest opinion on basketball, since it won’t offend either whites or blacks. But he should not give an opinion on NACSAR racing because whites might find it offensive.  The white engineer should give his honest opinion on NASCAR racing, because that won’t offend anyone, but should not give his opinion of basketball so as not to offend black people.  In other words, they can comment on the sport they dislike so long as it is played primarily by people of their own race, but should each refrain from commenting on the sport they dislike if it is played mostly by people of the opposite race.

c) The black engineer can say anything he wants about basketball, and can mention that he doesn’t like NASCAR racing so long as he compliments a famous white race car driver (preferably a deceased one) for being a good role model. The white engineer can say what he wants about NASCAR racing, and can mention that he doesn’t like basketball, so long as he compliments a famous black basketball player (preferably a deceased one) for being a good role model.

d) The question is illogical because it is inconceivable that a black person could dislike basketball, or that a white person could dislike NASCAR racing.

e) Any of (a), (b), or (c) is acceptable.

(The answer is on p. 2 of the PDF.)

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