Thursday, July 08, 2010

One step forward...

It's not an inaccurate characterization to describe me as a little bit cynical. I know it's a turnoff to some. I do have my hopeful moments, however, and I am not, despite recent opposing beliefs (can you tell I'm still not quite over this, yet?!) an extremely bitter, angry person.
But I have to say when I read a column like this about Lebron James's teasing of the media, fans, and general public (hard to avoid this story if you have even a smidge of access to media) regarding where he will be playing next year (it's Miami, in case you missed it!), I do get a little more cynical about things.
I couldn't care less about how and why James is making his announcement. Anyone who is shocked that there is so much hoopla about this one player...well, just shouldn't be. And now the backlash has begun about the prime time, ESPN hour-long announcement. And people are right to be critical and question aspects of this media extravaganza and ESPN's apparently enabling behavior.
But Deadspin writer Drew Magary's response is inexcusable. We only have to look at the title, "Lebron James is a Cocksucker" for a clue. It gets worse from there. This is the second paragraph:
It doesn't matter where he opts to go. If he goes to Chicago, he's a cocksucker. If he goes to Miami, he's a cocksucker. Even if he goes back to Cleveland, he's a goddamn cocksucker. He's a self-aggrandizing sack of shit, and ESPN is a bunch of pussy-whipped enablers for giving him a free hour of airtime tomorrow night and inevitably using 55 minutes of it to let Stu Scott give him a rimjob.
So that's three mentions of James being a cocksucker. One pussy-whipped cable network and a commentator who gives rimjobs.
The villainization going on here isn't just of James; it's of gay men and women. It's a homophobic and misogynist rant. James is gay; Stu Scott is gay, and ESPN is a bunch of passive, effeminate men which is, as we know, a slippery slope towards....yep, GAY!
I look at a piece like this and I think, "wow, we just haven't made any progress at all in combating the homophobia and misogyny in sport cultures." And I know this isn't entirely true, but it's still demoralizing that the knee-jerk reaction when a male athlete does something we don't like is to basically call him and anyone associated with him, a fag, a pussy, a homo, a cocksucker.

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