This is more of a word association/“did you ever notice” type issue rather than one of my customary rants. I was recently watching an episode of the hit comedy “The League” on FX, and they were having a rather interesting “did you ever notice” conversation that we’ve all probably had before. They presented it as more of a racial issue, but since I will expand on some of the words and phrases, I’ll say that the issue is part racial, part political correctness (two phenomenons that I absolutely hate). Oh……so maybe this is a bit of a rant after all.
Anyway, they were discussing the usage of certain words/phrases in sports, and how those words are inexplicably synonymous with a certain group of people. When you hear a sports commentator us the term “class-act”, they are usually referring to some well-behaved Black guy, as if they MUST use this distinguishing term because well-behaved Black guys (ESPECIALLY in sports) are hard to come by. We constantly hear this term used when someone is speaking of Tony Dungy, Lovey Smith, Donovan McNabb, Steve McNair (until the revelations that ultimately led to his death), Tim Duncan, etc.
When we hear the word “scrappy”, it is usually referring to non-athletic White guys, such as Scott Skiles, Tyler Hansbrough, Daryl “Moose” Johnston, Dan Majerle, Aaron Rowand, and even the great Larry Bird. It’s as if White guys can’t just be good players, they have to be “scrappy” to stand out.
When is it that we hear commentators harp on someone’s youth, the fact that they are very young, their inexperience, etc? Well, 9 times out of 10 when I hear that, they are referring to someone who just made a boneheaded mistake, or someone who is KNOWN for making boneheaded mistakes. So, common sense tells me that in sports, the overuse of the word “young” is just the politically correct way to call a dude…“dumb”. Come on announcers! How many more years can J.R. Smith POSSIBLY be…….”young”? He has to age someday, right?
Now that you get my drift, let’s play the sports word association game. I’ve started you off with a few. Can you think of any? If you can, post them in the comments section below. Take notes bloggers! Reader participation is the way to go when you are too……………”YOUNG”……………..to finish your own blog post.
HELP ME OUT EVERYBODY!