Daniel Ruth takes on the hate-full reactions of some in the NFL to Michael Sam’s announcement that he is gay. A nugget:
Both USA Today and the San Diego Union-Tribune have maintained a database of player arrests since 2000. By the end of 2013, at least 685 players have had run-ins with the law, including DUI charges, assault, failure to pay child support, spousal abuse, disorderly conduct, illegal weapons and drug possession. Of course, the gold medal of mug shots goes to former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, who is awaiting trial on a first-degree murder charge.
And the NFL is worried that a football player in the next locker who might have a boyfriend rises to a distraction? Peyton Manning doesn’t need to be shouting “Omaha! Omaha!” at the line of scrimmage. It should be “Miranda! Miranda!”
Also, the normally tepid and conventional Frank Bruni weighs in.
Putin on the ritz.
Via Mr. Feastingonroadkill.
Dave Neiwert looks behind the curtain.
It’s vital to pay attention, amid all the glitz and Olympic glamor, to what’s going on under the surface in Russia. The show we are seeing in Sochi this month is all facade, and what’s beneath, as I’ve been saying, is profoundly disturbing.
One of the reasons I have railed in the past about right-wing efforts to confuse the public’s understanding of the meaning and nature of fascism — embodied in Jonah Goldberg’s travesty, Liberal Fascism — is that people would cease being able to distinguish the real thing when it came along. Well, it is on our doorstep in much of Eastern Europe now, as we speak, and particularly in Russia. And hardly anyone, it seems, recognizes it.
As I’ve noted previously, the real red flag when it comes to fascism isn’t merely the spread of scapegoating politics (focusing for now on gays and immigrants), producing eliminationist thuggery in the classic Brownshirt mold — it is when officialdom, the government authorities and church leaders, not only condone such behavior but encourage and reinforce it.
Follow the link for more and for the video.
Reg Henry is not impressed. A nugget:
No, my problem is the lingering suspicion that the Winter Games are a sort of made-up, compensatory affair. They are like Take Your Daughter to Work Day becoming Take Your Child to Work Day. You have to include everybody or others will feel left out.
The sports that make up the Winter Games are also a little suspect. You will note that they tend to be activities most people do for fun in the winter out of a sheer boredom, not a sense of competition. People have skated for centuries, but originally when they leaped about in imaginative ways it was just called showing off, not a perfect 10 on the judges’ scorecards.
Follow the link, then watch an NCIS rerun.
If you like watching large men court concussions by running into each other high speed for a machine that chews them and spits them out, enjoy.
Otherwise, do something useful, like a crossword puzzle or a game of Canfield.
Yes, I’m fed up with Big Football and the endless inane news
wankery “coverage” of it all.
Didn’t miss much, did I?
The home-team coaches thought they had found a creative way to fire up their team: spray paint.
The scandal began with the discovery of vandalism on Nov. 1, 2013, when orange and black spray paint — South Pittsburg’s school colors — was used to scribble vulgarities on Marion County’s field house. The colors were intended to make it look like South Pittsburg Pirates supporters were the culprits.
The vandalism consisted of spray-painted words on the side doors and along the back of the school’s field house and a storage building and a concrete parking lot. Trash was scattered around the field house and derogatory names aimed at Marion County coaches and players, as well as a large “P” — South Pittsburg’s logo — were painted on the buildings.
I am getting closer and closer to concluding that American football is broken at every level of play.
Even though I have not watched a football game on the telly vision all this season (and have realized that life is much more fun without watching large men on steroids run into each other), I can still take some satisfaction that the New England Patriots, a team quarterbacked by a jerk and coached by a bigger jerk, managed to lose a ball game.
I look forward to not watching the Stupor Bowl.
Is there any reputedly “legitimate” endeavor (other than possibly Wall Street banking) more corrupt and venal than big-time college sports?
What’s the ratio between college basketball games on TV today and those worth watching?
Hmmmm. Games worth watching divided by games on TV today.
I can’t remember.
What happens when you divide into zero?
(Follow the link for his answer.)
Bertolt Brecht said
Great sport begins at a point where it has ceased to be healthy.
Perhaps he was talking about big-time football:
A Michigan native who has lived in Philadelphia for two years says he was harassed and beaten unconscious by a group of Eagles fans outside Lincoln Financial Field after the Eagles’ 34-20 victory over the Detroit Lions on Sunday.
Follow the link. The story has, as the folks who want to appear street-wise say, “cred.”
And don’t blame this on Philadelphia. It happens all over. If you must blame anyone, blame the hypesters.
This is big-time sports, the circuses (of the famous “bread and circuses,” but without the bread) for the 99%.
The corruption of big-time football infects everything it touches.
John Affleck searches for something worthwhile in the year in sports and concludes that that, with luck, it might be the realization that “words matter.”
He cites several cases of coaches and players getting into trouble over how they treat others, even though abusive behavior has long been considered routine in sports world. A nugget:
What these examples show is that U.S. sports culture hasn’t caught up to contemporary standards of language and behavior. And the defense that sports is somehow different because you have to be tough and resilient to participate in sports hasn’t gained much traction. Why? Because every working adult in this country has to be tough and resilient to do a good job, even to keep one. Sports is not unique, and shouldn’t get a pass on bad behavior.
Consider this: You’re at your workplace and the boss comes in completely unhinged — frothing, cursing, pounding the desk and disparaging your sexual orientation or gender or race. Is that little tirade going to make you more or less loyal to him or her? Is it going to help you succeed? Is it any more OK if your workplace is a baseball diamond than if it is a discount department store?