Former Australian chess representative and current professional economist John Adams was asked by a radio station in his home country in Australia to appear on a segment to discuss whether chess is racist, and he was none too happy about it. The central question, of course, was whether the chess rule requiring the white side to move first was racist or might propagate microaggressions.
Adams left no doubt as to his view on the topic: that the subject did not merit discussion.
In his response, Adams said, “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!”
According to the Daily Telegraph, the segment in question will air on Wednesday, apparently without Adams’ input. In an interview with the Telegraph, Adams went on to discuss his frustration with taxpayer money being used to fund the segment on racism in chess during the midst of the global coronavirus pandemic. “They said with everything going on, they wanted to have a conversation about white going first — and the racial context of whether white should go first… People are struggling with the economy, with their health, with the lockdown. They don’t want their money wasted on bulls**t,” Adams said.
It is generally considered that the white side has an advantage in chess because it makes the initial move. Furthermore, if black is permitted to move first, chess experts generally agree that this will disrupt patterns in the game. If players wish to demonstrate their social consciousness by allowing black to move first, then of course black may be permitted to move first; however, some chess experts state that in this variant of the game, the king and queen should switch places so that the king is on his own color, rather than having the queen on her own color, as in the standard rules of the game in which white moves first.