Hollowverse

Allen Iverson's wiki by Tom Kershaw

Allen Iverson was born in Hampton, Virginia and raised there and Newport News, Virginia.

Iverson had a rather difficult upbringing[1] and in all of my research, I can’t find any mention of religion. My blind speculation is that religion was largely absent from his young life.

A couple of things indicate an affinity to the Christian tradition, like the photo on this website in which Iverson is sporting a large cross around his neck.

There was also a short exchange between Iverson and reporters during a charity event, where Iverson commented that his charity work wasn’t about publicity, but rather getting in good with the man upstairs:

When it’s time for me to get toward that gate, either He gonna say, ‘Come in,’ or He gonna say, ‘Turn around.’ And a camera won’t decide whether I get in or not.[2]

The reporters later asked Iverson if he though he would be going to heaven or hell, he said:

I’ve done a lot of good things in my life and done a lot of bad things in my life so I don’t know. I hope the good things outweigh the bad things. I’m damn sure I don’t want to go to hell.[3]

I’d say we’ve got a Christian believer on our hands, but that’s about as far as I’m willing to take it.

Politics of fame and talent

Iverson has been a politically divisive figure since before he became a wildly famous basketball All-Star. In high school, Iverson was caught in the middle of a mini-race war in his hometown of Newport News, in which he and his black friends got into a fight with a group of white kids at a bowling alley.

Iverson was charged with hitting a woman over the head with a chair, even though later examination of the evidence could prove no such thing. Nevertheless, he was found guilty and handed a five-year prison sentence. The public outcry in his community was so great that the governor of Virginia, Douglas Wilder (also a black man), pardoned Iverson after four months.

However, Gov. Wilder was accused of racism as well, that he was favoring a fellow black man, and his political career was nearly derailed.[4] That race stuff is tricky.

In the modern era, it’s difficult to say where Iverson stands. For example, while he and president Obama have talked basketball together,[5] Iverson doesn’t appear to have ever endorsed or supported Obama–or any other candidate for that matter.

He has been accused of being anti-gay, both in the lyrics of a rap single he meant to release, but didn’t because of the controversial lyrics, and because he once called an unruly fan a “faggot” at a basketball game.[6]

What does that make him? Tell us in the comments


  1. Allen Iverson – Biography ↩︎

  2. Praying Fields: Iverson and the Afterlife ↩︎

  3. Praying Fields: Iverson and the Afterlife ↩︎

  4. Allen Iverson – Biography ↩︎

  5. Obama and Iverson Talk Practice Sound Clip and Quote ↩︎

  6. Anti-Gay Remarks by Athletes ↩︎