Scene Daily is reporting that Michael Rodriguez, a former Drive for Diversity candidate, is suing NASCAR because he believes he was rejected from the program for looking too white. TMZ also is reporting this story, but it looks like TMZ ripped off its story from Scene Daily. Anyway, the lawsuit is pretty inflammatory. Rodriguez, who is of Puerto Rican and European descent and reportedly has fair skin and blue eyes, alleges that a NASCAR or Access Communications employee said that he was “the poster boy for the Ku Klux Klan” during the 2005 combine. Access Communications is the company that operated the diversity program at the time.
Rodriguez filed the discrimination lawsuit against NASCAR and Access Communications in District Court in Pennsylvania. Rodriguez, who was 15 at the time, said he felt unwelcome during the combine and was not allowed to drive after sustaining a minor injury, even after he received a doctor's OK.
If this is true, Rodriguez has every reason to seek justice. However, it's worth noting that the sport a former coworker of mine used to call "the country's biggest public Klan rally" is being accused of discriminating against someone for appearing too white. Such is progress?
Drive for Diversity candidate claims NASCAR rejected him for looking to Caucasian (Scene Daily)
Blonde Puerto Rican driver sues NASCAR (Courthouse News)