Thursday, January 10, 2008

Racism gets worse and better all in one day. OR Why can't Tyler Hansbrough DUNK on Kelly Tilghman?

As stupid, disgusting, and ridiculous as Golf Announcer Kelly Tilghman's LYNCHING JOKE was, as usual it was made worse by the media's response. Although this time it wasn't the traditional media who made it worse, as they did with Kramer, Imus, et. al. It was specifically the sports media. First of all it doesn't matter if Tiger wasn't offended. She didn't make the comment to Tiger in the privacy of his bedroom during a night passionate sex playing the game 'runaway slave and plantation lady'. If as a nation we walked past his bedroom window and heard her scream out, "Lynch Tiger Woods in a dark alley!" during the throes of lovemaking, then we have no right to complain. (Although maybe we should call the cops.) That is officially none of our business. But that's not what happened. (At least we don't know it happened.) She made the comment about Tiger on TELEVISION. Which means many people had to suddenly hear the not only the word 'lynch' --- which is horrible enough, they also had to hear it in the context of a JOKE? Frankly, WHO CARES WHAT TIGER THINKS!

Clearly Tilghman (never trust people with silent 'g's in their names), Don Imus, and Rosie O'Donnell need to enroll in my joke school.

For me, this boiled over today while I was watching of one my favorite TV shows for the first time in like weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeks, Pardon The Interruption on ESPN. (It may surprise some of you who may not associate me with sports, but I try to be full of surprises.) And in truth my boil started a half hour earlier while I was watching Around The Horn (also on ESPN) which is a show too stupid to even deserve a hyper link. I hadn't seen PTI (as we in the know call it) in weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeks, becuz I have been away from home for all the holy days, and I was out of my much coveted rut. On Around the Horn they talked about Kelly Tilghman's "joke?" and three out of four of the sports reporters defended her. One, Woody Paige, even said she shouldn't be suspended for two weeks. The only one who didn't defend her --- and in fact went after her --- was SURPRISE, SURPRISE the black guy, Kevin B. Blackistone. (Although with a name like that how could he not go after her?) Kevin CLEARLY brought his soapbox for the occasion. RIGHT ON, BROTHER.! The other three excused Tilghman because they said it's hard to be on the air for three hours of golf coverage. The mike is always on. And sometimes bad things happen.

First of all, NO THEY DON'T! If every week we had golf commentators (or ANY sports announcers for that matter) --- If every week they were all saying violently racist (or sexist, or homophobic, or any "ist" or "ic" comments) then I would agree, "Wow! It must be harder to do that job than I thought. Maybe we shouldn't leave them on the air for so long." But in truth this doesn't happen all that often, so that excuse is more disgusting than the word itself.

What is happening here is the same thing that happens when a cop is accused of brutality OR when comedian Sarah Silverman says CHINK on national television... The industry that they to which they belong circle's around them to protect them. Cops call it the thin blue line. You don't betray one of your own no matter what. Later I was even further saddened when Michael Wilbon, who I like, gave the same defense of Tilghman on PTI. I guess the one thing to celebrate here is that for the first time in history a woman was allowed into a fraternity. Apparently sports reporters are more racist than sexist.


Also my real question anytime ANYONE does something like this is, Why are the tools of hatred so on deck for you in the first place? What's going on in Tilghman's head that 'lynch' is even available as a choice of words EVER? It's especially disturbing that it exists in her mental library of things to joke about.

I am also tense about the word 'lynch' because of the latest Denzel Washington movie, The Great Debaters. (YUP! I just linked you to my own blog!) In the movie Denzel has a speech about the etymology of the word 'lynch', that I have since discovered may not be the true etymology. However it doesn't change the fact that many people (of all kinds) don't want to hear that word over something as frivolous as golf.

And here's how racism got better this week...

That's right! That's a 6'8" white dude DUNKING on a 7'7" black dude. My favorite part is how Kenny George (the black dude) puts his head down after he gets dunked on. It's like he's hoping we all missed it. And George didn't even jump. Take that Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson (and Woody Paige for that matter).

Although wait a minute... a white dude dunking on a black dude? Does that make racism better or worse?


1 comment:

lady griot said...

Way to go, WKB. The most pointed question you asked that everyone should be asking is:

"Why are the tools of hatred so on deck in the first place? What's going on in Tilghman's head that 'lynch' is even available as a choice of words EVER? It's especially disturbing that it exists in her mental library of things to joke about."