The Kofi Kingston story that’s been playing out on Tuesday nights has brought WWE’s history with race, and specifically how few black WWE and World champions there have been, to the fore.
Whenever that conversation comes up, there’s always a side debate about whether Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson – a man with an African-American father, a Samoan mother and ten WWE/World title reigns on his resume – should be considered among the handful of black wrestlers to hold one of the company’s top belts.
A version of that discussion was happening on Twitter last night. Rocky found it in his social media wanderings and decided to chime in:
Glad I came across this and I’ll give you guys some context & truth.
I identify as exactly what I am – both. Equally proud. Black/Samoan.
And my friend, let me expand your thoughts a bit here – I transcended race in wrestling so there was no “booked that way”. Thx guys
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) March 20, 2019
The notion of anyone’s ability to “transcend race” is a tricky one and will likely lead to as many arguments as everything else on the subject. But if it’s ever been true that someone has, Johnson’s WWE career is as good an example as I can think of.
Whether or not he was booked as an African-American, a Pacific Islander or anything other than a jabroni-beating, pie-eating, LALALA, trailblazing, eyebrow-raising most electrifying man in all of sports and entertainment, Rock stating he identifies as both black and Samoan should mean to list him with Ron Simmons, Mark Henry and Booker T.
That I still need to ask probably tells me this isn’t the end of this, in what’s shaping up to be a very thought-provoking WrestleMania season.