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Why Can't Skip Bayless Say Johnny Football Has A Drinking Problem?

In case you missed it, everyone's getting pissed at Skip Bayless for calling Johnny Football an alcoholic on the air last week. Here's Bethlehem Shoals:


And Spencer Hall:

And Thirsty Dick Deitsch:


Okay, so I'm gonna preface all this by saying that Skip Bayless is a sad old dipshit and fuck him eternally. Honestly, I can't believe I'm defending him. He can eat a gallon of pickled dicks. Anyway ... (deep breath) ... this is ridiculous. Here's what Bayless said:

It is time for me to come down harder on a concern that I repeatedly voiced on this show before Johnny was drafted. My concern, I repeatedly said, was if Johnny continues to demonstrate that he has a problem with alcohol, and a problem with alcohol leading to partying and all that that entails, then I'm going to be out. I'm going to be off the bandwagon. I will no longer support a kid that I do like personally, and I have come to that point Stephen A. In talking to people in and around the Cleveland Browns, I believe Johnny Manziel continues to have a problem with alcohol. And I believe, Stephen A., that it is time for Johnny to get some help. He continues to lie to his executives, to his coaches, to his teammates, to the media, and most of all, he continues to lie to himself … He has a problem. If you wanna call him an alcoholic, I'll go that far. I think he can't handle his alcohol.


Out of all the stupid shit Skip Bayless has ever said, this is the most irresponsible sound bite? Give me a fucking break. That's downright reasonable. Johnny Fucking Football has already undergone counseling for drinking and anger management. His parents have publicly stated that they worry that he drinks to cope with stress. Here's his own dad talking about it to Wright Thompson …

"I don't know where the anger comes from," Paul says. "I don't think he knows. If it comes from his drinking, or if he's mad at himself for not being a better person when he fails, when he fails God and his mom and me."


This isn't just about Manziel having been drunk in public many, many times. It's about his parents having expressed concerns about his drinking, and his having been to counseling, and his having been arrested outside a bar, and some pretty well-founded suspicions that his drinking is affecting his performance at work. You can't say that you think a guy fitting that description has a drinking problem, or that you'd go so far as to call him an alcoholic? It's not a fucking racial slur. By definition, if your drinking causes you other problems, you have a drinking problem. There's nothing to indicate that Manziel's drinking is helping him out now, is there? Maybe Bayless is just one more voice in the cacophony required to get Manziel to finally listen.

If you have an issue with Skip calling Manziel an alcoholic, it's because you—yes, you—are attaching a moral failing to alcoholism. You think the word is being used as an insult when ... God help me ... Skip seems to be addressing the problem with some measure of delicacy, at least for him. Bayless is himself the son of two alcoholics and hasn't had a drink since 1975 (his only addiction is doling out scorching hot takes), and this seems to be one of the few topics that seems legitimately personal to him, not just something he is going to be glib about.


In this instance, Bayless is basically saying, "Hey, Manziel's got a medical issue and it's getting in the way of his ability to be good." Given that Manziel does show every sign of having a problem, if you're arguing with that, you're probably just doing so because you instinctively hate Skippy Bayless. Which, granted, is fair. I can't blame you for that. But to puff your chest and proclaim, "I've got a real problem with this …"? That's all an act. You just want people to see your outrage. You are engaging in an arms race of sensitivity. Calling Johnny Manziel an alcoholic is like calling snow white. Find something else moronic from Bayless to pick on. You have no shortage of options.

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