Historically, lawn jockeys were painted black. In a nod to political correctness, the museum painted them white — a move they no doubt found highly offensive yet necessary in today’s climate. Doing so again diminished the contributions of minorities to racing.Horse racing has been the sport of the rich and white. The John Hendricksons may be found at the backstretch, but they aren’t humping the hay bales, shoveling manure, grooming horses, or doing any of the physical labor. That’s left to an unseen underclass. Horse racing at Saratoga, as with all tracks, benefits from cheap labor and poor conditions doled out to the poor, mostly people of color. Draping Confederate flags over white lawn jockeys is a welcome nod to racing’s racist past and opens conversation to current treatment of backstretch employees.If John Hendrickson wants to pretend this is an act of vandalism, the district attorney will probably oblige him in his charade. That’s a perk of the powerful. Convincing a jury that an act that damaged nothing and cost nothing is vandalism may be harder.James vanDijkSaratoga Springs More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationSchenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen? Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion Re Jan. 25 article, “Confederate flags spur talk of racism”: I appreciate National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame’s President John Hendrickson’s state of high dudgeon over recent events at the racing museum. I feel similarly vexed when the powerful privileged unleash wrath and invective on the poor or disenfranchised for doing something that tarnishes the luster of the racing elite. Who is racist here? Is it Saratoga’s elite at the racing museum or the people who draped Confederate flags over the all-white lawn jockeys?
Junior forward Cassie Harberts’ impressive season was recognized by the Pac-12, earning her a spot on the 2013 All-Pac-12 team for the first time in her career. Harberts, who earned All-Pac-12 honorable mention last season and was a member of the Pac-10 All-Freshman team, led the Women of Troy with 17.9 points (45th in the nation), 8.1 rebounds and 0.9 blocks per game on the season. She accounted for 268 out of USC’s 609 free-throw attempts, making 187 of those attempts, and led the NCAA in free-throw attempts. She also finished with 10 double-doubles on the season to give her 16 for her career and scored in double-digits in every game except for one.Lone bright spot · Junior forward Cassie Harberts (above) was the team’s leader in points, rebounds and blocks per game this season. — Ralf Cheung | Daily TrojanHarberts ranks in the top 10 in scoring, rebounds and blocks in the Pac-12 and has started every game since she was a freshman. She was the Pac-12 player of the week on Jan. 7 and became the 24th Trojan to break the 1,000-point mark on Jan. 13 against Washington State. She has 1,253 points for her career, which ranks 16th all-time at USC. She is fifth all-time in free throws made with 407.Sophomore guard Ariya Crook also earned All-Pac-12 honorable mention, while freshman guard Brianna Barrett earned a spot on the All-Freshman and All-Defensive honorable mention teams. Crook finished the season averaging 13.4 points and three assists per game (10th in the conference) serving mostly in a reserve role and scored in double-digits in 20 games this season. She ranks eighth all-time with 54 3-pointers in a single season. Barrett led the team with 3.2 assists and 1.7 steals per game this season, starting in 19 of USC’s 29 games.