Cancel Culture Goes After “Racist” Chess Because White Moves First, This Chess Expert Shut Them Down


Is chess racist?

That’s the question that the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reportedly wished to explore last week when, according to Yahoo Sports, the ABC sought John Adams, an economist who represented the Australian Chess Federation in 2015, to participate in a radio discussion on the matter.

Rather than entertain the ridiculous question, Adams declined the interview request and took to Twitter to explain why he had no plans to discuss the “irrelevant” topic with ABC.

“I just received a phone call from an ABC Sydney based producer seeking a comment about the game of chess! The ABC have taken the view that chess is RACIST given that white always go first! They are seeking comment from a chess official as to whether the rules of chess need to be altered!” he tweeted.

“Trust the taxpayer funded national broadcaster to apply ideological Marxist frameworks to anything & everything in Australia! With all the drama resulting from COVID-19, I am amazed that the ABC is broadcasting on irrelevant topics!”

Adams retweeted a statement by former star player Garry Kasparov in which he said that those triggered by the white player moving first in chess can instead take up Go, a game where black moves first.

Yahoo reports that ABC Radio Sydney host James Valentine later said the idea was to have a discussion, not to brand chess as racist.

Kevin Bonham, a member of the Australian Chess Federation committee who was tapped after Adams declined, explained that the concept of having white move first was developed in the 19th century as a way of standardizing the game.

“In the 19th century the player who had the right to go first could choose which color they went first with, but analysts for some time had been publishing games as if white moved first whether this was actually true or not,” Bonham wrote on an internet chess forum, according to Yahoo.

“There are benefits to standardizing it, in terms of things like publishing diagrams of the chessboard, because when you … play with black moving first, it effectively mirror-images which way round you have your pieces,” he said on the show. “The pieces themselves don’t represent racial teams, they just represent the sort of combatants in a battle wearing different colored uniforms if you want.”

In fact, Bonham noted, casual chess players may elect to have black move first if they wish.

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