Friday, August 04, 2006

I know this will shock and amaze all of you...

But I heard something really stupid on sports radio this morning driving into work. I was listening to 680 during one of 790's interminable commercial breaks and Perry Laurentino, in his infinite wisdom, decided that the NCAA is hypocritical for putting pressure on South Carolina to take the Confederate flag off of their capitol building, while at the same time endorsing "slavery" in the form of refusing to allow college athletes to be paid. Let's compare and contrast two hypothetical people and decide which of the two of them is a victim of "slavery":

Person A - forcibly kidnapped from his home, brought across the ocean in shackles, given a new name, compelled to perform backbreaking labor for the rest of his life with no possibility of being allowed to do anything else, and often separated from the rest of his family.

Person B - lavished with attention to commit to a certain school; received free education, room and board, and food for four years; received free exposure to increase his chances to make a fortune in the NFL; and was one of the most popular men on campus with a limitless supply of good-looking girls throwing themselves at him.

Not to be excessively serious or anything, but it's really insulting that the term "slavery" has been devalued so much that it can be used to describe an experience as coveted as that of a college football player.

6 comments:

Peter said...

And funny you should bring that up... I was also "shocked" by the D.C.-area sports radio show yesterday afternoon, when the host, get this: BLAMED the pressures of being the Big Man On Campus for Rhett Bomar's dismissal.

The poor kid couldn't possibly be expected to survive those horrific pressures of being treated like royalty.

Barf.

AJY said...

Perry is one of the few reasons I am glad I moved out of Atlanta. That guy is a total Yankee.

And I totally know what you mean about changing over to 680 when 790 has one of their horribly long commercials.

AJY said...

Hey also if you get a chance stop by billyjoeoverthrow.blogspot.com.

I am born and raised in Atlanta and currently relocated to Charleston at the moment. I just started this blog up a couple of weeks back and am trying to get some commenters. Check it out.

Michael said...

Peter,

I think we can safely say that college football suspensions (or any college football subject that doesn't involve what goes on on the field) leads to the most inane commentary on sports talk radio. Come to think of it, a good topic for a post would be "worst sports talk topics." #1 would have to be a college football playoff. There's nothing worse than hearing casual fans whine about what a "travesty" it is that the title isn't "settled on the field."

AJY, I liked the Carlos Martinez montage.

Chg said...

The real reason the NCAA is hypocritical is South Carolina removed the flag from the state capitol years ago.

Sandlapper politicians negotiated a compromise in which it was moved to a memorial to war dead on the statehouse grounds. One of the authors of the compromise was the leader of the Black Caucus in the state legislature, and it passed with bipartisan support.

After the flag was moved, the NAACP changed their stance from "don't fly it over the capitol" to "don't fly it anywhere on statehouse grounds." The NCAA courageously followed their lead and changed their position as well.

The entire affair is a great example of why a sports governing body inserting itself into local politics is such a tremendous idea.

I'm anxiously awaiting the NCAA's instructions on who to vote for in the Kennerly-Rosser runoff the the Board of Commissioner's, District 4. I would hate to choose the wrong candidate and cost the Gwinnett Arena a chance to host postseason events.

Michael said...

CHG, there is a distinction to be made between the NCAA endorsing a particular candidate and the NCAA refusing to allow competitions in a state that honors the Confederacy in such an open way. Quite frankly, I like the NCAA's stance (and it's rare that I would say that) because South Carolinians will thumb their noses at just about any outsider telling them to change, but when their athletic programs are implicated, they stand up and pay attention. Similarly, Alabamians paid more attention to desegregation when it became clear that Bama could not compete without black athletes. (Insert standard caveat that Bear had already signed a black player before the Sam Cunningham game.)