Problems With Athletes' Charities

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Vol 47 Issue 51

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Problems With Athletes' Charities

A recent Dallas Morning News report revealed that many charities run by sports stars are poorly managed, with some organizations appearing to exist only to employ the athletes' friends. Some extreme examples:

  • Elton Brand: Despite its purported focus on helping single parents by creating after-school basketball programs, the Elton Brand Foundation is merely a front to give Brand a forum in which to dunk on children all day
  • Kyle Busch: Forced to shut down his Motor for Life Fund when authorities learned its stated purpose of "teaching sportsmanship, dignity, and respect to underprivileged children" was actually accomplished through playing the original arcade version of Cruis'n USA
  • Allen Iverson: Claimed the goal of his Answer Foundation was to end world hunger; used the charity's money to hold an annual press conference and ask if world hunger was over yet
  • Flutie Flakes: Well, they didn't cure autism
  • Michael Jordan: Though the Michael Jordan Foundation has done a lot for Chicago's inner-city youth, the charity is often considered a disgrace, as it was started only after a friend bet Jordan $5 million that he wouldn't establish a charity benefiting Chicago's inner-city youth
  • Takeru Kobayashi: While competing in December's event to raise money on behalf of the Food Bank for New York City, ate the Food Bank for New York City
  • James Naismith Sporting Trust: Hasn't done a single thing since shipping off a box of basketballs to an Indian school in 1939
  • Michael Vick: Doesn't really matter what the hell this guy does, frankly
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