WEST NEW YORK, NJ - Did we really need another reason to despise the “Worldwide Leader in Sports?” I don’t think we did but nevertheless, another week and another reason has emerged for folks to hate on ESPN. Baseball’s All-Star game festivities in Minneapolis just two weeks ago cemented ESPN’s status as the go to channel for disgust and disdain. The Home Run Derby “emceed” by Earth’s most annoying comb-over, Chris Berman, annually inspires us to hope his next vacation will occur somewhere on the Gaza Strip. You want to talk about Occupation? This guy’s “occupied” the most loathed Sportscaster slot in America since Mark Spitz won Olympic Gold.
The most recent ESPN fiasco though, has everything to do with the diarrhea-mouthed Stephen A. Smith. By now, you know what the “A” stands for. Usually seated opposite the equally detestable Skip Bayless on the network’s “First Take” program, Smith has carved out a niche and a reputation in the cluttered, hate-filled blathersphere of Sports Talk. Unfortunately, that reputation is one of little integrity and even less intelligence. This is difficult to do sitting alongside Bayless, who himself is an unmitigated d’ bag, who’s done great things such as fabricating an athletic pedigree for himself and shamefully trying to drag Derek Jeter’s pristine name into the insidious Steroids conversation in 2012. So we know what we’re dealing with and we shouldn’t be shocked with whatever puerile nonsense into which these amateurs wander. ESPN meanwhile is totally fine with this. In fact they encourage these guys to drift into areas (reality) that they are woefully unqualified for.
The NFL and its toe-headed fake tough guy Roger Goodell set the stage for miscreants like Stephen A. Smith by delivering a 2-game suspension of Ray Rice, the Baltimore Ravens’ running back for the punishing and brutal beat down of his fiancee (now wife) in an Atlantic City casino a couple of months back. There was actual footage of Rice’s physical brutality of the woman, including apparently punching her and dragging her seemingly lifeless body by her hair. Charming stuff, and yet one more black eye for Rutgers’ disgraceful athletic department. 2 games. 2 games. 2 games! Trying to get my head around this, but I can’t. The guy beats the snot out of a woman and the NFL hands down a 2 game suspension?! The message delivered by the NFL by virtue of this ruling: Women don’t matter? (unless they’re buying NFL Officially licensed Merchandise) Beating the crap out of your “loved one” is OK with Goodell and his blue-blood upbringing. There is no other conclusion to be drawn. Ray Rice and Roger Goodell are everything that is wrong with the NFL. Disgusting.
Stephen A. Smith had some words of advice and caution for victims of abuse. He said with a straight face, that in some cases, the abused woman kind of “brings it on herself.” Women, Smith explains, can antagonize and aggravate the abuser, and so it stands to reason that she must be vigilant in remembering not to “incite her man.” (Tex Antoine, anyone?) They should know that in certain situations, they need to “back off.” Nothing like blaming the victim, Stephen A. You sound more like Dottie Sandusky than even a pretend journalist. Stephen A-you’ve been a loud-mouthed ill-informed and poorly prepared “reporter” for many years. You’ve earned that reputation. And now you’ve brought it on yourself. You, and Roger Goodell are disgraceful, utterly out of touch with societal mores and plain decency. Your time has now passed. Good riddance. Hopefully, one day soon we’ll be able to say the same for the cesspool that is the morally bereft “Worldwide Leader in Sports.“