Black Cop's Kid: An Essay Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s deeply personal essay explores racial conflict through the prism of his childhood and the influence of his father, a police officer who walked the beat between two worlds.
Growing up in New York City in the 1950s and 1960s, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar listened to jazz, watched Jackie Robinson at Ebbets Field, and saw a Black pop-culture icon in a TV western. It kick-started Kareem’s interest in a rich history erased by white educators. It also sparked his activism. During these years, as Kareem struggled with racism, visibility, and justice, his father’s presence loomed large with purpose. He was a Black cop weathering a complicated conflict of loyalties during the most tumultuous civil rights upheaval the country had ever been through. Now, at a time when his powerful voice is needed the most, Kareem shares his unique perspective from the front lines of sixty years of social change, not just as an activist, but as a son, an athlete, a writer, and a Black man in America.
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|Listening Length||1 hour and 4 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||September 28, 2021|
|Publisher||Amazon Original Stories|
|Best Sellers Rank||
#23,128 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals)
#108 in Sports Biographies (Audible Books & Originals)
#176 in Law Enforcement Biographies
#593 in Black & African American Biographies
Top reviews from the United States
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Abdul-Jabbar describes his family life, his relationship with his father, and early experiences that shaped his later views. He recalls attending an event where he was able to ask Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. a question, and how his worldview was altered in 1964 upon witnessing the start of a riot after a black teenager was killed by an off-duty officer.
Abdul-Jabbar makes some very profound points, and he is able to analyze the influence of his father on his own sense of justice and purpose. Being a black police officer in the 50s and 60s was clearly a difficult job, and it seems to have provided Abdul-Jabbar with a unique insight into the nature of duty, justice, and protecting the community.
Over the last few pages, Abdul-Jabbar recalls his participation in the famous Cleveland Summit, and his decision to change his name. He explains that he has always thought of himself as a history teacher, and that while he played 20 years in the NBA, he has been writing about history for 32 years. He offers some words of wisdom about the importance of teaching about the rich history of black Americans, and notes that his father's influence has made all the difference in his life.
The Audible version is read by JD Jackson, and while I would've preferred if it were read by Abdul-Jabbar himself, Jackson does a good job and his voice is pleasant to listen to.