Former Los Angeles Lakers center and NBA Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar met with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton yesterday in Washington, DC as she named him a Global Cultural Ambassador. With this new title, Kareem will travel the world promoting education and racial tolerance, which is a very nice way of saying he’ll show up to places and ask kids if they want to see him dunk.
Kareem was selected by Clinton for her “Smart Power” initiative, because she believes that he will “engage young people worldwide” and young people everywhere responded, “Shaq? Oh, it’s not Shaq? Why isn’t it Shaq?”
He will make his first official trip Sunday when he travels to Brazil for a number of events centering on education.
“I look forward to meeting with young people all over the world and discussing ways in which we can strengthen our understanding of one another through education, through sports and through greater cultural tolerance,” he said.
(Via ABC News)
Jokes aside, I think this is fantastic. Most people don’t hear about Kareem’s efforts because he’s not a current, hip name, but he has done so much to promote the history and cultural significance of African-Americans as inventors and educators – specifically with his book, “What Color is My World?” – so this is truly an outstanding selection by Clinton.
Also, any reference of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar means I get to post one of my favorite movie clips of all-time, so here’s to hoping that he’s appointed to many more positions in the future.
(Image via Getty.)