Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The Gay Inquisition

Don't take this the wrong way.
If you know what's good for you.

This is the first post I have written about professional sports, and will very likely be the last. Well, it's not about sports, except incidentally, but rather the row over a certain tweet by a certain Miami Dolphins player named Don Jones.

Jones tweeted a remark that made him a target of the Gay Inquisition:
On Sunday, the Miami Dolphins fined safety Don Jones and sent him to "educational training" for tweeting negative comments about Michael Sam, who became the first openly gay player to be drafted, immediately after the Rams took Sam with a seventh-round pick.   

Jones tweeted "OMG" and "horrible" immediately after Sam was selected on Saturday and kissed his partner on national television. He then deleted those tweets. 
I will not even try, in a brief blog post, to comment on the complex issues involved in homosexuality or the propriety of televising Sam and his partner kissing. (I didn't watch it, of course, but no doubt the smooch seen 'round the world was repeated ad nauseam.) No, this is about the gay juggernaut that is quickly turning those who practice same-sex relationships into members of yet another sacred Victim Group™, with the usual corollary of criticism being taboo and any dissent flamed as "hate."

It didn't take Jones long to get his comeuppance from the political correctness commissars.
Dolphins Coach Joe Philbin said Jones' tweets "were inappropriate and unacceptable, and we regret the negative impact these comments had on such an important weekend for the NFL."
“We were disappointed to read Don’s tweets during the NFL Draft," he said.  "We met with Don today about respect, discrimination and judgment. These comments are not consistent with the values and standards of our program. We will continue to emphasize and educate our players that these statements will not be tolerated."
As I ascend toward the age of being drafted into the afterlife, I am beginning to feel that I am part of the last American generation that remembers when people could speak their minds bluntly. They might have suffered anger in return, or at worst a punch in the chops, but so long as they were only expressing their views they did not have to worry about losing their jobs or being sent to so-called educational training.

We used to take pride in that. We weren't like Communist countries where a remark that displeased the authorities could land you in the Lubyanka or a Siberian gulag that enjoyed balmy weather two days a year. But in a (so far) milder form, the Soviet system is now our standard operating procedure. Interestingly, it is not the State that retaliates against heresy -- that generates resentment and sometimes revolutions -- but the State's proxies: corporations, organizations, media, academia. Oppression is all the harder to fight when it's everywhere instead of concentrated in a dictator's palace.

Naturally, Jones followed the prescribed script for someone in his position, making the standard speech of regret and submission. Jones said in a statement that he wanted to "apologize to Michael Sam for the inappropriate comments that I made last night on social media."
I take full responsibility for them and I regret that these tweets took away from his draft moment. ... I sincerely apologize to Mr. Ross, my teammates, coaches, staff and fans [hey, Don, don't forget your mother] for these tweets. I am committed to represent the values of the Miami Dolphins organization and appreciate the opportunity I have been given to do so going forward. [Michael and your Friend, please step over here so I can kiss you.]
History has never quite forgotten the Holy Roman Emperor, Henry IV, who spent three days in the snow (supposedly kneeling) at Canossa in 1077 begging the Pope to withdraw Henry's excommunication. Or the heretics who confessed to the Inquisition following a few games of torture. Or the Soviet officials who stopped off at Stalin's "show trials" on their way to the firing squad to apologize for their counter-Revolutionary errors.

Those things we remember. Freedom of speech, even about gays, not so much.


YIH said...

As was pointed out in the news item Breitbart linked it was doubly bad that he was a member of the Miami Dolphins. Last year they were embroiled in a scandal over ''bullying'' so of course they wanted to 'get ahead' of this so they can concentrate on preparing for the 2014 season (training camps open mid-July).
As you noted, Michael Sam was drafted in the seventh round which means his odds of making the team are not much better than if he were 'John Doe' walking in off the street. I suspect he'll be cut shortly before opening day, if he's lucky he'll get put on a 'practice squad' (practices with team, ineligible for games) somewhere.
Like ''the gay NBA player'' last year he seems to be a mediocre talent who's doing this for the attention he never would have gotten by his actual performance in the sport.

Anonymous said...

It's funny, I recently wrote about the Soviet parallel too in the context of Sterling. This country is changing . . . for the much worse.