Challenge: try to explain the arrest
of Henry Louis Gates
and the resulting kerfluffle -- culminating in the beer summit
-- to someone who hadn't heard of it, without having to interrupt with "I'm not kidding, this really happened
" whenever you pause for breath. But you have to, to get the full effect of Cambridge Cop Accidentally Arrests Henry Louis Gates Again During White House Meeting
brings word that Mr. I-Don't-Photoshop Except When I Can Get Away With It
has released an...essay
? I guess? I suppose it's to respond to the allegations against him, but it's hard to tell. It's one of the most obnoxiously pretentious and still somehow content-free pieces of shit I've read in a long, long time, so it's worth it for entertainment value and reinforcing the validity that any additional energy expended upon this "artist" is entirely wasted except as a cautionary tale to others, or possibly as an exercise in either steel-reinforced denial or merely merrily prancing about with the English language before beating it to death with the sledgehammer of the tortured misunderstood artist.
EA's not releasing its annual incremental roster patch for its NFL game for the PC for the second year in a row. I smell a spite-torrent or two. Pity Red Alert 3
wasn't worth seeding.
When the rape allegations regarding Ben Roethlisberger (oh God I can type that from memory now) surfaced, I skipped through my usual parade of web sites, pausing when I hit ESPN, thinking they just hadn't filed their story yet. No, as it turns out, they've taken a most curious stance toward the civil case re: Roethlisberger: speak no evil
. It took the self-proclaimed worldwide leader in sports 48 hours
to casually mention that there are allegations against the Super-Bowl-winning quarterback, and had any other
story simmered in the background for two days, ESPN would kick itself for not covering it. ESPN's half-hearted defense is that the allegations are too weak to merit coverage and that ESPN doesn't cover civil suits -- but even a casual observer will remember allegations with similar if not equivalent levels of veracity trumpeted by the network against Kwame Brown or Larry Johnson
. And if you do make the mistake of talking about Roethlisberger on ESPN airwaves, don't worry, they'll correct you soon enough
. Is this a network just wanting to keep the premiere sports franchie (and business partner) and one of its brightest stars
happy? Or just another manifestation of rape culture
For the record, that last link explicitly says that suggesting the accuser may be a "lying gold-digger" is rape culture. Maybe I'm missing something, but to me that's just healthy skepticism -- I don't think leaping to a conclusion in either direction suits anyone at this juncture, and if someone wants to paint me with a brush of condemnation for not immediately grasping their standard and waving it frantically, then I guess I get painted. But that's another, much larger can of worms -- removed from the accusations themselves is the issue of ESPN's coverage of them, or lack thereof. It's inconsistent with precedent and its own mission as a purported newsgathering organization, and ultimately it damages their brand (unless they choose to go the route of so many cable channels and change their mission, from sports news to sports entertainment -- and cynics may well ask what the difference is and if that hasn't happened already). To report on allegations as
allegations and not foregone conclusions shouldn't threaten Roethlisberger, the Steelers or the NFL, but it's a pity ESPN chose to capitulate. It's not discretion, it's cowardice, and no institution is better served by such.