There's a backup tight end for the Dallas Cowboys who is doing everything he can possibly do to invite self-promotional controversy…
Now, in the past week, he debuted a video showcasing the "Black Olympics," a Kool-Aid-, fried chicken- and watermelon-eating contest between himself and his brother, a rookie free agent with the Seattle Seahawks… I am not easily offended. Perhaps it's my size and affinity for food, but I take virtually no offense to good-naturedly delivered jokes about food stereotypes. Everybody I know - black or white - loves properly seasoned fried chicken.
I don't know about you, but I don't even need proper seasoning to enjoy friend chicken. You could season it with anthrax and I'd still devour it. Anyway, back to Whitlock's rambling…
Watermelon is extremely healthy and very tasty. And it wasn't until I was in my 30s that I kicked my Kool-Aid habit.
When people e-mailed me on Friday asking what I thought of Bennett's "Black Olympics," I didn't know what to think.
I wasn't offended. I was sad. I grew even sadder throughout Friday and Saturday as it became apparent to me that Bennett's grab for controversy was being ignored.
Let's pause right here. So Whitlock starts off his column by trashing Marty B for inviting attention to his antics, but then professes sadness that people failed to pay attention to his antics. I think that merits a solid, "Juh?" But we've only begun to plumb the depths of Whitlock's increasingly unhinged attacks.
I've reluctantly made peace with the fact that black comedians and rappers can make millions of dollars shouting the N-word and lampooning/promoting negative black stereotypes.
If Barack Obama made use of the N-word a death-penalty offense, commercial rap music would disappear and nearly every black comedian would have to rewrite their material.
Oh, let's do it, then. Perfectly sane idea.
My point is I understand the economic impact of outlawing our (black) self-hate.
What I don't understand is when and why it became OK for a black athlete to milk the same cow.
I assumed that Bennett's "Black Olympics" would cause an uproar among the groups that claim to stand against just this kind of racial exploitation.
But Whitlock, isn't it better that NO ONE gave a shit about the video? Do you really want people ginning up outrage and giving Marty B more attention than you believe he deserves?
I like Whitlock, and 99% of the time he writes shit that's more interesting than pretty much any other sportswriter out there. In fact, I'm sure those are his exact marching orders from FOX. "Hey Jason. Go write some crazy shit that people will notice." But his efforts to stir up controversy now seems to scream, "OPRAH! HAVE ME BACK ON!" It's a neat little bit of irony, given that Whitlock is chastising Marty B for drawing unwarranted attention to himself while using his column to more or less do the exact same thing.
I emailed Marty B and his manager for comment on Whitlock's article, but they never got back to me. However, Marty B did respond to the criticism on Michael Irvin's radio show, apparently emerging from his appearance without Irvin having stabbed him in the neck with scissors. Some clips…
I don't really think it's offensive. It depends on your sense of humor and how you look at things. We were just having fun and it was very funny for me and my brothers, when I look at it I just can't stop laughing. If someone takes offense, I apologize. That wasn't my intention. It was just us having fun. Some people like what you do and some people don't. Always in life, anything you do, someone is going to have a different opinion than what you have…
I'll get criticized regardless. I don't do it to get crities (sic) or people say it's me fighting ot (sic) get attention, but it's not. ...It's just me being me. That's why I have Marty B TV for the fans to see what type of person I am outside of football. ...In my spare time I like to have fun and make these youtube videos. We're just having fun.
Now obviously, I have some bias in this argument. But doesn't Bennett sound like the sane person in this fight? "Hey, we decided to fuck around and make a stupid video. If people don't like it, oh well." Sounds like a perfectly rational rebuttal to me. Much more so than, "Hey everyone! Pay more attention to this camera hog so that we'll finally realize how much we black people hate ourselves and do something to correct it!" That argument's a bit of a stretch, particularly when you used column space the week before to call Serena Williams fat and lazy.
Then again, I am a white person. And like Leitch, there's a very good chance I have no fucking idea what I'm talking about when it comes to bojanglin' matters such as these. Perhaps the best way to settle this fight is to turn to the most democratic, articulate, and diverse group of voices in the world… YouTube commenters.
house niggers, always shucking and jiving for white people.
Why that dude isn't on welfare and instead makes a big paycheck is the American tragedy ! !
how bout a white olympics? who can snitch the most, who can bitch the most, and who is the most stuck up.
Thats great, I've got a few events in mind. the 40 OZ. Chug a lug - Crack pipe relay - Run to the mailbox for the government check, Most kids by different fathers, etc, etc. LOL
Uh oh. We may not settle this thing for a while.
UPDATE: Video response to Whitlock from the Marty B camp. Complete with handy screengrab! "He's a cross between Al Sharpton and Sean Hannity, if ever was a person." Indeed.