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Mike Tirico isn’t trying to be Black. Here’s a picture:

Yup. That guy right there is not about the Black label, or apparently any labels at all. In an interview with the New York Times, he had the following to say about race:

“Why do I have to check any box? If we live in a world where we’re not supposed to judge, why should anyone care about identifying?” He continued, “The race question in America is one that probably never produces a satisfactory answer for those who are asking the questions.”

In a conversation back in 1991 with the Post-Standard, via Bar Tool Sports, Tirico had similar race struggles. He said both his parents are White and his upbringing was with an Italian family in Queens. This is how he told it:

“When people go around and say, ‘You are Black’— well, I don’t encourage it, but by the same token I don’t back off of it. If you want to call me that, that’s fine. But, you know, in my whole family, there’s nobody I know who is Black.”

He goes on to say that he’s seen photos of his father, his father’s mother, and his father’s sisters and they’re all White — the same with his mom’s side of the family. “They are all as White as the refrigerator I’m standing in front of right now,” Tirico explained.


In the article, he said he would like to do a genealogical study one day to see if he had Black ancestors, but he wasn’t pressed about it.  “Does it matter to me? Yeah, I’d like to find out the truth at some point, so I can answer questions for my kids,” he said. “But me? I’m living, I’m working, I’m leading an upstanding life. I don’t worry about it.”

A lot of the Internet’s reaction to Tirico’s race beliefs can be summed up in one tweet. Channeling Jay-Z‘s use of O.J. Simpson‘s line, “I’m not Black, I’m O.J.,” one user posted:

There you have it.



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23 thoughts on “Sports Announcer Mike Tirico Says He’s Not Black

  1. FallMornings on said:

    Amber I understand what you’re saying. i was taught to speak English correctly. I’ve been told by many of my peers that I’m taking white. Why is that a problem? I tell them by learning to speak correctly, it will help with the written word. Still working on that but I try. I wonder how many resumes or employment applications that were submitted by black people were trashed due to incorrect grammar?

  2. Chris on said:

    Wow, he clearly looks nothing like the people in the picture. Either there was a mix up at birth, mama slept with a black man, they used a sperm donor, or he was adopted. At what point did he not realize that he looked different. But frankly I don’t care which he claims or wants to be. I am a black female but my friend of over 50 years always tells me that I sound like a white woman over the phone.

    • Totally agree!! Those are the ONLY four scenario’s it could be and I am leaning towards mama had a thang for some DARK meat. LMAO!!! And I get the same thing with my voice, EVERYONE thinks I am Caucasian over the p[hone. SMDH!!

  3. So glad he ‘s white.. please take him white people…I say your mother did in fact sleep with a black man…and that’s your real dad…I feel so sorry for him not know who or where he comes from…so sad….

      • Diane on said:

        Probably how u sound. He doesn’t have any bass in his voice. When I’m talking to someone on the phone, u can tell from their voice if they’re blk or white. You got that dummy??

      • Amber on said:

        Dr. Larry. When people talk about “speaking” black or white, it has to do with the VOCAL TONE, NOT the words. When I hear Oprah, Oprah sound like an educated black woman. When I hear Dan Rather, Dan sound like an educated white man. Get it. It is his vocal tone. He has a vocal tone that is associated with the tone of whites. The same can be said about someone who is white, Asian, Hispanic. People get caught up on the word or act like there are not differences, it is a difference.

      • Amber on said:

        This is also when it come to regions of the world and country. Judge Joe Brown sound like a black southern man. I live in Georgia and I have been told I sound like I am from New York and they are amazed that I do not have a “southern” sound. MY sister has a way of taking up sound like where she lives or who she hangs around. If she goes to London right now, she may come back sounding like a British tone.

      • Amber I guess the hood homies didn’t get that memo because a black man with and ethnic tone but speaks grammatically correct English will be asked “why you talk white” or “tryin to be white talkin all proper” not to mention that Ebonics debacle in CA 20 yr’s ago

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