Keeping It Right

Keeping It Right is for thought provoking conversationist. It's for those who love to talk about today's issues, yesterday's history and tomorrow's future.

Location: Moreno Valley, CA

Monday, November 05, 2007

Is There A Double Standard?

Recently in sports news there have been at least two stories that, well, kinda flew under the radar of good discussion. One story for instance is the story about the NBA and it's handling of a referee that was indicted on gambling charges and fixing NBA games. And the next is about the Philedelphia Eagle's coach Andy Reid. Last week a judge said that the Reid home was the "drug emporiam" of all houses and the family is dysfunctional. But wait! theres more, one of Reid's son tried to get in prison with his stash, thus causing the police to search the Reid home where, the judge's assessment was correct. The Reid home was "drug emporiam."

Now the question. If this were a athlete's home and he was indicted on gambling charges and fixing games or had his home searched and drugs were found. What exactly would be the headlines on ESPN or other sports cable shows? And God help the athlete if he were black. But in this case, both subjects are white and in the Reid case, no scrutiny of any kind.

Now I spend a helluva alot of time finding reasons for why racism and discrimination has curved and when stuff like the above and things that happened last week, with MLB Commissioner, Bud Selig exempting the Dodgers from interviewing a minority candidate and the Yankees only entertaining one minority with a contract already drew up for their hire. It's making my arguments awfully hard and I have to listen to other arguments and say begrudgely, "you're right." And I hate that.....

1. Double Standards from David Stern
"So you can't blame jazz musicians/or David Stern with his NBA fashion issues."

-- Nas, "Hip Hop is Dead"

When I first read about NBA commissioner David Stern's recent revisions to his league's rules regarding referees and gambling, I thought it was a Stephen Colbert parody. Stern -- the man who has consistently ruled with an iron fist regarding players -- was all of a sudden being considerate and reasonable? He couldn't be serious.

But he was serious. In the aftermath of the Tim Donaghy scandal -- a scandal that cuts right to the core of the NBA's credibility -- Stern determined the league's rules involving referees and gambling were outdated. He decided to relax the rules regarding referee gambling, in an attempt to bring these rules more in line with contemporary social attitudes. Stern's change of course suggests he recognizes that, as times change, rules sometimes need to be adapted. Stern demonstrated he is not a strict constructionist, but is instead someone who is willing to admit fault and make appropriate changes when necessary. This is all quite admirable, I think.

It is also quite hypocritical.


More Double Standards

2. Double Standard Train Arrives in Reid's Station

It's not often that broadcaster Al Michaels, as skilled as they come, triggers my gag reflex. But he did during the Philadelphia-Dallas broadcast on Sunday.

There are few people who don't feel for Eagles coach Andy Reid on some level. He is the parent of two delinquent and dangerous sons, one of which is an alleged drug dealer. You remember what drug dealers do, right? They destroy neighborhoods, families and the very fabric of society.

Michaels expressed such syrupy sympathy for Reid it was unclear if Michaels was talking about Reid or Martin Luther King. He spoke of how unfortunate it is that Reid is in the public eye and if it were the children of a Fortune 500 CEO getting into trouble with the law, it would not be headlines.

Ah, Mr. Michaels. Can I call you Mr. Michaels? Reid decided to get -- and stay -- in a profession that requires 20-hour days and he enjoys the multimillion dollar salary that accompanies it. Reid didn't join the Peace Corps.

While there is sympathy for Reid and his family, you cannot be anything but floored by the double standard the Reid case demonstrates.

Imagine if quarterback Donovan McNabb had two kids who were such dangers to society. They were driving while high on heroin. They were drug dealers. McNabb's home was described as a "drug emporium" by an unbiased judge who also stated there was no structure in the home. What would the reaction be?

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