Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Sports fans = Grampa Abe Simpson
By Rick Morris
You can't throw a dead rat on the Internet these days without hitting some ignorant jerk opining on Lebron James by making up stuff completely. The most popular statement is a variation on the notion that "Michael Jordan never missed a big shot in his entire career!"
Now, I love to argue with people in many forums of life, including our FDH LOUNGE program on SportsTalkNetwork.com (Wednesdays, 7-10 PM EDT). But I love informed arguments, intelligent people going back and forth where there's at least a hint of validity to both sides. I absolutely loathe know-nothingism in all its forms, and as great as the Internet has been in the improvements it has brought to modern society, empowering every last knuckle-dragger unworthy of it has been an unfortunate side effect.
Talk radio fuels this phenomenon as well, but there are actually many elements to blame.
For me, the signature moment in the infantilization of our modern society came a few years back, when the always-vapid John Salley defended Kanye West for his post-Katrina remarks. Now, Salley could have said that in this country, Kanye is entitled to his opinion and he'd have been right about that (ignorant though Kanye's opinion was). But no, that wasn't what Salley said. He said, "Kanye is entitled to HIS TRUTH."
His truth. Let that sink in for a bit.
Apparently, in this country, there is no objective truth anymore. Anything that anybody thinks is valid. If Kanye wants to make a pronouncement about George W. Bush's bigotry that was completely at variance with everything that was known about the president -- and remember that I am a repeat critic of the former president -- then, hey, it's true because he said so. His truth.
So if every Lebron-hater in the world wants to throw crap at a wall to prove that he's overrated, then that's just their truth. He's overrated because people say that he is. Know-nothings who confuse their own fatigue of Lebron hype with the notion that he is not as great as advertised can get great traction for their sub-literate rants because, hey, that's their truth.
Grampa Abe Simpson's got an excuse for his failure to portray events as they actually were. What excuse have these peons got?