Jason Whitlock is a man of considerable writing talent. I mean that.
Few writers mince fewer words and drive home a point so succinctly.
But Jason Whitlock‘s values compass is perilously out-of-whack with progressive social norms. And his delusions of self-importance have him convinced that it’s almost always the right time to inject himself into, and fan the flames of, controversy while, as Gregg Doyel put it on Twitter, “Absolving himself pretty emphatically.”
Nowhere is this more evident than in his most recent column, which was highly unnecessary, hateful and tactless and manages to, over the course of a mere 900 words, attack: Lolo Jones, Serena Williams, Serena fans, media, Wimbledon, Gawker, Emma Carmichael, Deadspin, Jen Engel, women, David Stern, Paul Pierce, Maurice Greene, liberals, light-skinned African-Americans, dark-skinned African-Americans, Dawn Harper, Kellie Wells, men and capitalism. And crying.
Character assassination requires a sniper’s bullet, Jason Whitlock used Napalm. Now I present:
THE OLYMPICS IS NO PLACE FOR CRYING
Can we please stop all the f%$&*@g crying? Please?
These are the Olympic Games, not the Crying Games.
That opening couplet sounds more thoughtless and mailed-in than any Eagles live performance since the 70s. “Crying Games,” have you been sitting on this gem since the Barcelona games?
And these are the Olympic Games being held during America’s greatest economic fall in 80 years, at a time when the cash-strapped American news media try to figure out how to remain relevant while still being responsible and fair.
Ooooh an irrelevant tangent two paragraphs in! I can do that, too! Did you know you Macaws can live to be between 50 and 70 years old? You didn’t?! You invest in one of those, and you’ll have a fine feathered friend for life!
So save me the tears, Lolo. Stop the whining, Serena opportunists.
I see you didn’t write enough about Serena a couple days ago. You’re back at the buffet for more. Well, back at the buffet, that’s hardly surprising, big guy! #SlapsWhitlocksBack #SeismographsInSouthernCaliforniaRegister4.4
You want equality, you have to learn to dance to the same music as the guys. Criticism is the background music for success. We call it “elevator” music; you can’t reach the top without hearing it. The higher you go, the louder it plays. Eventually your ears pop.
You’re right. No successful man has ever railed against his critics. Nope! Not Andy Roddick, Richard Nixon, Bob Knight, Kanye West, Michael Vick, nobody.
Lolo Jones, the 100-meter hurdler, reached for the stars. She trained, she prepared, she packaged herself and her story for maximum success and exposure. Lolo wanted to be Flo-Jo and Tim Tebow rolled into one. Flo-Jo was dogged by rumors of steroid abuse, and Tebow is the most polarizing Heisman Trophy winner/NFL quarterback in the history of football.
Yeah, The New York Times blasted Lolo. Cry me a f%$&*@g river. That’s what happens at the top of the mountain. Ask Tebow.
Real men can prove a point without bleeping out cusses. You could say, “Cry me a river.” “Spill an ocean of tears.” Or, you could refrain from writing this column altogether, since it appears it’s going downhill fast when you resort to %!$# so quickly. I’m not defending Lolo, but criticism hurts. I’m sure you’re sensitive to it.
No one — I repeat, no one — blasted Serena Williams for her stupid Crip Walk at the Olympics.
You’re right. Absolutely no one. Like I said, you must know about being sensitive to criticism, since you’re already retorting your Serena column from like, what, a couple days ago? Presumably to respond to those who those who critiqued your original point. I mean, otherwise, why bother, right? You said your piece. If you were comfortable with the criticism, you wouldn’t need to re-say it. Right?
My colleague Reid Forgrave suggested a mishap with the American flag during the medal ceremony may have been an unintentional “slap on the wrist,” and that Serena “dipped her toe into controversy” with her Compton Crip gang dance. I wrote that Serena’s Crip Walk was most likely a shot at Wimbledon for years of mistreatment and that the dance was inappropriate and classless, and that Serena should apologize for it and understand it simply detracted from her amazing performance.
There are thousands of journalists covering the Olympics. Two people pointed out the utter stupidity of the multi-millionaire, minority owner of the Miami Dolphins mimicking a gang dance at Wimbledon and the Olympics, and you would’ve thought we channeled Don Imus and called Serena a “nappy-headed” foe.
Who said that? Who are you blaming here? Who’s “you”? Media? The public at large?
We pointed out the obvious. It was stupid. There were no calls for punishment. There was actually sympathetic context provided explaining what may have motivated her actions.
“Remember that thing I said that some of you were offended by? Come onnnn … it wasn’t THAT offensive, was it? Wha — wha — where you going? Why u mad? COME BACK HERE! I DIDN’T MEAN ANYTHING BY IT!! *sobs into box of Krispy Kremes*
But the opportunists saw an opportunity for victimization and a chance to demonstrate their hipness and perceived lack of racial bias. One of my favorite writers at Deadspin, Emma Carmichael, wrote a long “how-to guide” for Crip Walking, explained how the dance has gone mainstream and described Serena’s two critics as “crusty” and “panicky.” And one of my favorite sportswriters anywhere, my colleague Jen Engel, included the alleged mistreatment of Serena in her column complaining that female Olympians aren’t being allowed to compete without conditions.
How could she NOT include it? Serena’s been subject to competing with conditions all her career. Here, let me refresh you.
My 45 years on earth have taught me that only mothers give unconditional love. Beyond a mother-child relationship, there are conditions on damn near everything. For the most part, as it relates to the American media — with the exception of 16-year-old child Gabby Douglas being questioned about her mother’s bankruptcy — the women at the Olympics are being scrutinized and analyzed just as unfairly as the male athletes.
Are male athletes being scrutinized unfairly? Or are they being properly scrutinized? Isn’t all athletics unfair scrutinization since we’re assigning civic/national/international importance to what’s ultimately nothing more than kids games?
Throwing up gang signs as a playful joke is just as mainstream as Crip Walking as a joke. Little white suburban kids do it. That didn’t stop David Stern from fining Paul Pierce for tossing up a Piru Blood gang sign during a game, and it didn’t stop the media from criticizing Pierce for doing it. Maurice Greene and the entire 4×100 relay team got trashed at the 2000 Olympic Games for their excessive celebration. There’s a time and a place for everything.
Wait, weren’t we talking about Lolo Jones crying? Again, didn’t you just write this column a couple days ago?
You know who called Serena’s Crip Walk inappropriate first? Serena Williams.
“Actually, there is a name. But I don’t know if I — it’s inappropriate. It’s just a dance we do in California,” Williams sheepishly said in the moments after Crip Walking.
YOU ALREADY WROTE THE CRIP-WALKING COLUMN. LET IT GO, MR. “PEOPLE-NEED-TO-STOP-BEING-SO-SENSITIVE-TO-CRITICISM.” Again, weren’t we talking about crying?
Let’s stop the f*&^#)*g crying.
Indeed, we were.
If Emma Carmichael wants to prove how un-racist and cool she is,
She doesn’t. She actually moonlights as a Grand Wizard.
spend the day crafting a how-to guide for black writers looking to get a job at Deadspin.
She’s a columnist, so, she probably won’t, but I’m sure she can bring it up with HR.
White folks defending black folks’ right to dance and entertain is so 1920s.
And, yet, here we are – still defending that right, because we aren’t quite yet in the post-racial utopia we were promised when Barack Obama took office, and there’s still a sub-segment of White America that’s, for no reason other than hatred and ignorance, SCARED TO FUCKING DEATH (there’s that F-Word you wanted) of African-Americans.
You want to break some new ground, demand that Gawker put some dark faces in the limo all the cool Deadspin liberals are filling up to defend Serena.
You want to break some new ground? How about stop recycling different appropriations of your Serena Williams Manifesto as you deem appropriate.
I ain’t the one. Save that okeydoke (spit) for the clowns who see Crip Walking at the Olympics as some sort of sign of black progress. I bet even those clowns would prefer a job over the privilege of Crip Walking for the entertainment of the cool white kids.
Again, the Serena Williams Crip-Walk Column, ladies and gentlemen. BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND, THIS TIME WITH 300% MORE EMMA CARMICHAEL.
Look, Title IX bought women a seat at the athletic table. Well, the athletic table is rough. A throne at the top of the athletic table is vicious, especially in this era dominated by television and the pursuit of endorsement riches.
You’re right. Because nobody’s ever gotten emotional at the pinnacle of men’s sports. Nobody. Not Andy Murray. Not Michael Jordan. Not Michael Phelps, or that awesome dude from the Dominican Republic who smoked everyone in the Men’s 400m, or Kirani James or anyone. Ever. Not Adam Morrison or Greg Norman or Kyle Busch or Tony Stewart or Tiger Woods or … or …
Fair-skin, mixed-race, drop-dead-beautiful Lolo Jones is absolutely despised by her dark-skin American 100-meter-hurdle teammates, Dawn Harper and Kellie Wells. Harper won the gold in 2008, but Lolo won the real gold, the fame. After taking the silver and bronze, respectively, at these Games, Harper and Wells didn’t hide their contempt for Lolo.
And now we’re finally getting to the point of the column, some 700 words after discussing briefly that the New York Times shredded Lolo Jones, which implies to me that your column didn’t actually have a point to begin with, but rather you used Lolo Jones as a brandish to once again scratch off your Serena itch, and along the way inflict a multitude of verbal potshots that are as aimless and effective as a three-wheeled shopping cart.
The light skin-dark skin war within the African-American community is older than the battle between Auburn and Alabama football fans and more mean-spirited than the animosity between Dan Gilbert and LeBron James.
I’ll be frank. This is the one sentence on which I’m not qualified to comment.
It’s my bet that Harper and Wells and their handlers gassed up the New York Times to go after Jones.
It was a Karl Rove-ian swiftboat campaign. This is what men do. This is what unrestrained capitalism does.
Swiftboat. Timely! So, you’re telling me, that in an effort to drive more attention to themselves, Dawn Harper and Kellie Wells and their ‘handlers’ had the New York Times write an unsolicited, unprovoked, excessively-negative roast of Lolo Jones without ever mentioning Dawn Harper and/or Kellie Wells at all? “HEY. THE SPOTLIGHT IS SHINING TOO BRIGHT ON HER. CAN YOU SHINE IT EVEN BRIGHTER? I WANT TO SEE IF IT MAKES ME LESS INVISIBLE.” Mr. Whitlock, come on man, you know as well as anybody if you want the spotlight on you, you gotta be in the story!
In our quest for relevancy, riches and success, we eat our own. If you can’t stand the way we eat, get out of the Olympics.
So, wait, weren’t we talking about crying?
1. Girls, stop crying and learn to handle criticism.
2. I have no idea how to handle criticism.
3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. Serena, stop crip-walking. Like I said a couple days ago.
10. Something about Title IX, and stop crying.
11. UNRELATED: Light-skinned African-Americans and Dark-skinned African-Americans got beef.
12. Awkward coda about men and capitalism.