Doug Robinson, the resident paste-eating troglodyte at the Deseret News, has gone and written a truly remarkable column this week.
The impetus for the column was an offhand comment Amar'e Stoudemire made about how NBA players might consider starting their own league if the lockout persists. Stoudemire didn't seem to take the statement too seriously. He said he had plenty of more-pressing items on his to-do list. He wanted to gather his Knicks teammates for a pre-training camp, focus on an acting gig, and study history at Florida International University. (It sounds like Stoudemire is now taking classes at FIU.)
That didn't stop Robinson from devoting nearly 800 words to lampooning Stoudemire for being stupid enough to think that if his employers keep refusing to let him work, he might be able to arrange to work on his own. Robinson uses Stoudemire as a stand-in for all NBA players and does everything but state that "those people" don't have the brains to run a league. Oh wait, he does state that:
Most players didn't finish college—or even start college. They don't know anything except basketball, especially when it comes to money, which is why 60 percent of NBA players reportedly go broke within five years after retirement.
They can't even handle their own finances, so why do they think they can run a billion-dollar business?
To listen to Stoudemire, though, starting a league is simple. "It's just a matter of us strategically coming up with a plan, a blueprint and putting it together," he said.
Right. And building a 747 is just a matter of us strategically coming up with a plan to slap some steel together with some wires and bolts and other stuff.
Stoudemire sounds like Bubba in "Forest Gump" when he is trying to convince Forest to join him in the shrimpin' business—"I got it all figured out, too. So many pounds of shrimp to pay off the boat, so many pounds for gas, we can just live right on the boat …"
The devil is in the details. Do Stoudemire and the other players—-if there really are other players considering this idiotic idea - have any idea what they would be getting into? Does he realize he would have to build and finance the construction of arenas or convince politicians to build them with public funding? Is he prepared to negotiate broadcasting rights? Or player salaries? Can he sell tickets?
Who's going to do all this, his posse?
Stoudemire not only won't make more money, he'll probably make less. He might have to take a pay cut or work without pay for a time while getting the league off the ground, using some of his own cash to finance this venture. He would have to actually work for a living. He would have to work more than the two or three hours he spends at practice or the 82 nights he plays games. He couldn't spend his free time playing video games and rolling with his homies. He would have to have a real grown-up job. He would have to sacrifice and work and use his tiny, previously unused brain. He'd have to sit in an office and wear a suit and put in long hours.
His posse. His homies. His tiny, previously unused brain. What's Robinson—whose newspaper is owned by a church that officially believed in black racial inferiority until 1978—trying to say, here?
Aside from the obvious problems—why couldn't Stoudemire hire college-educated experts to build arenas and negotiate contracts, the way players currently hire experts to handle their business?—has Robinson actually seen Forrest Gump? The Bubba Gump Shrimp Company was a huge success. (Although technically, it was the dimwitted white guy who lived to put the black guy's business plan into action.)
Curious, now, at what manner of person could write such a column, I took a spin through some of Robinson's past work for the Deseret News. If I may borrow a phrase, his oeuvre is like a box of chocolates....
July 14, 2010 12:16 a.m. MDT
"LeBron James took easy way out by going to Miami"
LeBron's decision has been reviled by everyone, but not by former NBA star Chet Walker. "James is a genius for what he engineered with Wade and Bosh," he said. "For the first time in league history, players themselves, not an owner or general manager, put together a championship team."
That's just great, Chet. The inmates are running the asylum.
You know, I've never seen NBA athletes described that way.
Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2010 9:33 p.m. MST
"You want some answers, LeBron James? OK, here you go"
Well, for starters, LeBron, you should shut your mouth. Every time you open your big yapper on this subject, it just makes things worse. Like the time CNN's Soledad O'Brien idiotically served you up an excuse you hadn't even thought of by asking if race was a factor in your falling out with the public. You should have said no and explained that couldn't be the case because, after all, you made zillions of dollars off the public - white and black - before The Decision and you were still black back then, too. Instead, you saw an opportunity for sympathy and jumped onboard - "I think so at times," you said. "It's always, you know, a race factor."
As if you hadn't already alienated enough people.
Robinson has a valid point. After all, it's possible that a white troglodyte who works for a paper owned by the Mormon church has a firm handle on what it's like to be a black athlete in America. I'm not alienated yet.
Tuesday, June 14, 2011 10:29 p.m. MDT
"LeBron James' mouth is his worst enemy"
Who's advising this guy, Terrell Owens? Memo to LeBron: Whether you win or lose, our lives are the same, but Sunday night was AWESOME and thank you. It certainly cheered life for we Little People who don't have a mansion to go home to and had to report to the coal mines on Monday morning.
The Deseret News is a coal mine? I always suspected it.
Wednesday, May 25, 2011 12:13 a.m. MDT
"Despite Lewis' claims, NFL lockout might actually throw crime rate for a loss"
Did you know that the NFL lockout is a public safety issue, like swine flu and Lindsay Lohan?
According to Ray Lewis, the Baltimore Ravens linebacker, if the players and owners don't resolve their labor dispute - which involves the excruciatingly painful task of trying to divide annual revenues of $9 billion while still putting three Escalades in every garage - there will be trouble.
Specifically, the lockout could cause a crime wave.
"Do this research," Lewis, the budding sociologist, told ESPN. "If we don't have a season, watch how much evil, which we call crime, how much crime picks up, if you take away our game." ...
Then it occurred to me: Maybe Lewis didn't mean the fans would go on a crime wave without football; maybe he meant THE PLAYERS.
That's not a big stretch. Look how Antonio Bryant has fared in recent months without football. Look what Michael Vick, Plaxico Burress and Ben Roethlisberger, among many others, did when they were away from football. Idle hands and all that. Maybe what Lewis meant was that we better end this lockout before the players starting (ran)sacking villages and throwing innocent bystanders for losses and intercepting Brinks trucks and so forth.
Another keen insight. In hindsight, I'm sure that Lewis—who must have a tiny brain like Stoudemire—intended to broadcast his desire to throw an innocent bystander for loss.
Monday, June 14, 2010 10:41 p.m. MDT
"P. Diddy not a good example of Daddy"
Look, let's not mistake what Combs does as a father for fatherhood. He'll get Father's Day cards from his kids on Sunday, but let's hope nobody thinks he fills the role.
Being your kid's homie is not the same as being his Daddy.
There is a big difference between being a Diddy and a Daddy.
Writing a check for $360,000 is, in most ways, much easier and simpler than being a good father.
Fathers live with their children when they have the choice. This can make life rewarding but also more complicated and certainly less selfish and, some would say, not nearly as fun as being a "music mogul."
When you live under the same roof with your children, you are part of their lives - the ups and downs, the teaching, the discipline, the car pools, the coughs and colds, the Little League games, the bedtime stories, the dance lessons.
Fathers don't just show up for the fun stuff - the 16th birthday party with a 1,000 guests, including "celebs" - and then disappear. ...
Combs has almost assuredly perpetuated the epidemic of fatherless homes that plagues American families.
Tuesday, April 26, 2011 11:39 p.m. MDT
"Honor Code is not a black-and-white issue"
First, Deadspin.com wrote a lengthy piece earlier this month—co-authored by Darron Smith, a (black) former BYU professor who was fired by the school—stating that BYU unfairly targets black athletes. Then a Utah newspaper jumped on board and ran with the story last weekend, giving it front-page, magazine-length treatment.
The reporters interviewed former BYU basketball and football players who are black and were suspended for violating the Honor Code and then pretty much concluded BYU is on a witch hunt against them.
To believe such claims and the reasoning of the athletes, you have to buy into the notion that blacks can't be expected to adhere to high levels of moral behavior; that BYU goes to the considerable trouble of recruiting black athletes just so they can kick them out of school - thus making it more difficult to recruit them in the future - that BYU coaches don't tell minority athletes fully about the Honor Code, at great risk to themselves, the school and program, so they can "get them" later; and/or that BYU minority athletes simply can't understand the English language as it is written in the Honor Code.
All of the above should be more insulting to blacks than the statistics the stories reference that supposedly damn BYU to PC purgatory.
Here's a link to the Deadspin story. I'm the other co-author. That means Robinson, who works for a paper owned by the Mormon church—which also owns BYU—is not only calling a black professor fired by BYU (for publishing a book called Black and Mormon) a racist, he's calling me a racist, too. Touche.
Monday, June 13, 2011 10:05 p.m. MDT
"Can common sense win in Alta 'racism' case?"
I don't know what's going to happen to that Alta High kid who wore the "KKK hood" at a school assembly last March, but I hope common sense makes a comeback and prevails. Apparently, a two-week school suspension, physical threats, weeks of anxiety, legal fees and fear of reprisals on the football field aren't enough; now the kid must go to court on Thursday to face legal charges.
This just feels like the adults are piling on, and they should know better. ...
Most Utah kids don't really know or understand the black experience of American history. They don't know the seriousness and ugliness of the KKK and what blacks endured.
All true. Most Utah kids don't know squat about the black experience of American history. It's not that they're dumb like NBA players. The student who thought it amusing to race around the gym with a white pillowcase over his head carried a 4.0 GPA. So there must be some other explanation here. And I think I know what it is: The kids are reading Doug Robinson columns.
(Hey, at least Robinson likes some minorities. In March 2010, he wrote piece about an Indian kid called "Unstoppable: Talkative, bright boy adopted from India has stumps for limbs.")