City of Chattanooga wants nothing to do with "whites-only" basketball league
CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Newspapers in Georgia are reporting the creation of a new "whites-only" basketball league and at least one report in the Atlanta Journal Constitution has Chattanooga as a possible city.
According to the Augusta Chronicle, the Atlanta-based league is looking for local contacts to pay $10,000 to become a licensee in one of 12 cities throughout the southeast.
It remains to be seen whether this is a publicity stunt or a real idea by former pro wrestling promoter Don "Moose" Lewis.
Lewis says he's serious.
"People will come out and support a product they can identify with. I'm the spoken minority right now, but if people will give us a chance, it'll work... The white game of basketball, which is essentially a fundamental game, works."
The All-American Basketball Alliance plans to kick off its inaugural season in June and hopes to find 12 cities to host teams.
According to a news release to the newspaper, "only players that are natural-born United State citizens with both parents of Caucasian race are eligible to play in the league."
According to the Chronicle, Lewis said he wants to emphasize "fundamental basketball" instead of "street ball" played by "people of color."
"There's nothing hatred about what we're doing," Lewis told the paper. "I don't hate anyone of color."
Chattanooga, Albany, and Augusta are on the list of cities Lewis is pursuing.
Channel 3 Eyewitness News contacted Chattanooga Mayor Ron Littlefield's office for comment. According to the Mayor's spokesman Richard Beeland, "This league is absolutely ridiculous and the City wants nothing to do with it."
Beeland added that he's unaware of anything the City can do to stop it.
The AABA apparently has no Web site and Channel 3 has been unable to independently verify whether Lewis' plan is legitimate.