Sunday, January 31, 2016

Pre Super Bowl NFL notes

Since there is no football games worth noting this week, it’s a “slow” news period—particularly when the “big” news for some local sports radio hosts is the opportunity to opine politically correct on the recent lawsuits concerning NFL cheerleader pay. Frankly, I always thought the idea of cheerleaders in the NFL was nothing more than a gimmick that means more to the participants than your typical football fan. I mean really; they don’t do anything on the field that you’d notice even if you were attending the game, and at best they are seen for a few seconds once or twice on a telecast. Six NFL teams have no cheerleaders at all, and it hasn’t been detrimental to ticket sales one bit: the Packers, Bears, Lions, Steelers, Giants and Browns—and four of these teams even won Super Bowls without them (15-5 W/L combined). 

But there is a more interesting story floating almost entirely undisturbed out there. Former Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher recently played the race card by opining that he is not a “fan” of Panthers’ quarterback Cam Newton’s on-field celebrations. We’ve heard this complaint before, but he just had to “expand” on this thought by adding stupidity and ignorance to provinciality, by suggesting that Newton should behave more mannerly like a real quarterback–like, say a perfect white guy like Peyton Manning, who carries himself with “class.” 

Oh yeah? Apparently some people mistake aloofness for “class.” Yes, he has made a few amusing commercials and had an appearance on SNL to humanize himself,  but that is clever PR. Last week I mentioned that Manning isn’t entirely a “class” act, and there is even more reason to think so. 

"It was the gluteus maximus, the rectum, the testicles and the area in between the testicles. And all that was on my face when I pushed him up. ... To get leverage, I took my head out to push him up and off."

Oops. No, this has nothing to do with the “garbage” HGH accusation. And sorry if I dropped that little bomb unawares, because I (and nearly everyone else I am certain) was completely unware of this story. I only happened upon it when I was googling news about the latest actress in the women-in-prison television series “Orange is the New Black”—a self-servingly mendacious idea if ever—to try out the fictional concepts of violence for real on someone off set.  I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time wrapping my mind around what is implied in the italicized statement, let alone actually visualizing it. 

Now, if anyone actually read the book Manning, co-written by Archie and Peyton Manning with an assist from ghost writer John Underwood back in the early 2000s, he or she would have encountered a curious passage in regard to an “incident” that occurred in 1996, when Peyton Manning was a junior at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville:

If nothing else in life, I want to be true to the things I believe in, and quite simply, to what I'm all about. I know I'd better, because it seems whenever I take a false step or two I feel the consequences. Like with the 'mooning' incident that made such a stir in Knoxville before my junior year.

What “mooning” incident? Can he be referring to our previous indulgence? 

I did it thinking the trainer wasn't where she would see. ... Even when she did, it seemed like something she'd have laughed at, considering the environment, or shrugged off as harmless. Crude maybe, but harmless.

Harmless? Humorous? Squishing one’s ass cheeks and testicles on someone’s face, whether a male or female? Manning goes on to say that the alleged non-victim of this episode had a “vulgar” mouth, as if this "explains" anything. For her part, she alleges that he “re-enacted” this demonstration twice more, and referred to her as a “bitch” while she administered a drug test, demonstrating his discontent by tossing away the pen for which he was to sign off on the contents from one of his offensive members. Anyone who thinks that this was an “isolated” incident should take a look again at the video of Manning hysterically berating Jeff Saturday. 

Manning was clearly lying about his version of events, or so says the alleged “real” target of his “mooning”—Malcolm Saxon, a track athlete at the time, who chastised Manning in a letter in 2002:

Bro, you have tons of class, but you have shown no mercy or grace to this lady who was on her knees seeing if you had a stress fracture. ...She was minding her own business when your book came out. Peyton, the way I see it, at this point, you are going to take a hit either way, if you settle out of court or if it goes to court. You might as well maintain some dignity and admit to what happened. ... Your celebrity doesn't mean you can treat folks that way. ... Do the right thing here.

As I've said before, I don’t think Manning has all that much in the way of class, but that is beside the point. In fact, I haven’t found any mention of witnesses to the episode who have stepped forward to support Manning’s version of the incident, and Manning has apparently never apologized or owned-up to the incident, in fact prefers the world to believe that he is the “victim.”

Why did he do it? Was he offended that a female invaded the sanctified halls of the football domain? Jamie Ann Naughright was indeed the first assistant trainer to have a position on the male side of the UTK athletic department; perhaps there were a few male athletes who thought it “inappropriate” and “presumptuous” for a female to have access to a locker room full of semi-naked males, and acted out their feelings on the matter in inappropriate ways. Although I think that “assistant trainer” was an odd position for someone who had just acquired a Ph.D in something called “health education,” it is no excuse to behave like a classless jerk—or worse.

Now you may ask what happened after the “mooning” incident? Naughright reported it to a local sexual assault crisis center. I confess that I am cynical about the politics and propaganda that drives such places; last fall’s edition of the UTK alumni magazine has an article written by  someone from the campus crisis center who makes the following claim: “Unless a female gives an enthusiastic ‘yes,’ it is rape.” Excuse me, but doesn’t that essentially encompass about 90 percent of heterosexual encounters? That certainly is the opinion of misandrist feminists like Catharine MacKinnon, of whom I had the intense displeasure of attending her guest lecture at the school (I was one of only two males in attendance, the other a reporter for the city newspaper, so she felt free to “expand” wildly on her theories). And isn’t it the plain truth that most females like to play “hard to get” or otherwise force males to play their game before they even give a tepid “yes”?

Of course, this plays right into the hands of activists who claim that one-third of all college women are raped, even though the actual reported numbers of sexual assault tend to be extremely small (for example, despite posters about the "epidemic" of sexual assault on campus, there were only six reported cases according to a Seattle Times story at the University of Washington in 2006, none leading to charges). If the female feels “disrespected” in the morning, won’t she tell a credulous rape “counselor” what she wants to hear, or be susceptible to a different “interpretation” of her responsibility? Isn’t that what happened in the recent case of those three expelled black University of Oregon basketball players (except that the accuser appeared “enthusiastic” to witnesses), who investigators and the local prosecutor (and even a friend who spoke to the media) all believed the accuser guilty of lying? Those athletes should have brought suit against the university for violating not just their due process rights, but their civil rights. 

But that's off point; the Manning “mooning” occurred in 1996 before the social media explosion of today. He was even then a sacred cow that no one dared touch. An alternative “narrative” was concocted for him, and it was bought whole hog by the fawning media and the locals. The university reached a settlement with Naughright the following year, after persuading her to leave. But Manning being Manning, his conceit and arrogance was so great that he couldn’t help himself but to paint himself as the real “victim” in the incident in his book, giving his “side” of the story and painting Naighright as an unpleasant individual to be around. Naughright then sued Manning for defamation and violating an order not to discuss the incident publically. Manning had been free and clear, but he just didn’t have the “class” to let sleeping dogs lie, let alone have the honesty to own up to his little “indiscretion.”

The judge hearing that case refused Manning’s plea that the case be dismissed, observing that he had made deliberately false and defamatory statements in regard to the incident and the alleged victim. Not surprisingly, this case was also settled quietly before it became a long-running soap opera. 

Very quietly, it appears. Yet it seems as if a whole roster of black athletes have been routinely demonized by the white-dominated media with pressure from white gender activists, without regard to due process (or civil) rights, and often even the facts of their cases. I’m not going to discuss the Ray Rice case again, except to point out (again) that it was a case of the most appalling level of media manipulation of truth yet outside George Zimmerman. But who honestly has heard even the slightest whispering about this Manning incident? Why has ESPN or CNN never shown even the slightest interest in investigating this? 

And it isn’t just Manning; remember that Ben Roethlisberger was suspended “just” four games after being accused of rape, and that incident doesn’t seemed to have harmed him one bit. Of course, social media bit Brett Favre in the fundament in the Jenn Sterger affair, although to be “fair,” Sterger (according to a friend) received numerous solicitations from male “admirers” that included images of the “goods,” which she apparently saved  on her computer; one wonders what “compelled” them to be so “personal.” But because Sterger couldn’t be taken seriously as a “victim,” Favre survived with his image intact, and will be inducted in the NFL Hall of Fame after just one vote.

But this Manning incident—in which he is alleged to have purposely dropped his pants and thrust his fleshy posterior and testicles in a woman’s face while she was examining a supposed injury he claimed to be suffering—just has this singularly repulsive aspect to it, so much so that no one really wants to come to grips with what it may say about Manning’s true personality.  You might assume that if he is a “normal” human being, he would succumb to embarrassment and shame whenever the memory of it resurfaced, but Manning is a “god” who is the very essence of “perfection,” at least to him and his countless admirers. I’ve said before that Manning is all about the statistics, and the “awe” that they inspire in the sports media has been particularly blinding.

Post script: It has also been reported that Manning and his father tried to infuse a racial angle into the incident, claiming that the victim had sexual relations with black students, obviously still an "issue" in a Deep South state; however, this claim only remained a malicious rumor circulated by the Mannings. The university also attempted to deflect attention away from Manning by attempting to persuade the victim that it was a black athlete who "mooned" her, not Manning; she apparently refused to "cooperate" in this fashion.

No comments:

Post a Comment