Friday, December 5, 2014

Sir Charles wins again

For me, it's fun to watch people complain at Barkley's recent comments on the Ferguson protests.  Not only did he seem spot on, but you can tell it really ruffled some feathers.

A great example was CNN, which ran this article on it's website :

The article is inlaid by jealous rage by this important Hiram College professor Jason Johnson,

"In an interview with CNN, Barkley said, "We as black people, we have a lot of crooks. We can't just wait until something like (the Brown shooting) happens. We have to look at ourselves in the mirror."
"There is a reason that they racially profile us in the way they do. Sometimes it is wrong, and sometimes it is right," Barkley said.
The problem with these statements isn't just that they are misleading -- 16 out of 29 witness statements said that Mike Brown had his hands up to surrender, in direct conflict with Darren Wilson's story;
Full stop.

So basically, Barkley said to take some personal responsibility for the crimes and Jason Johnson avoids the topic.  He clearly can't win the moral argument, so he returns to the case to build a moral argument.

And then, he misleads, intentionally or not, the reader away from the forensic evidence in the case that proved some of those witness statements were lies.  As a professor, he should know better than to solely trust alleged eye witness testimony.  So no kidding they conflicted with the truth - aka, the officer's story.

So how does the professor of political science miss this obvious part of the story?  And why does he spend more time roasting Charles Barkley's personal life?

I suggest jealousy.  You can tell because he started his story with the line,

"There is nothing wrong with professional athletes expressing their opinions about social or political issues."

which was a good old fashion strawman.

However, he then contradicts himself later in the article :

"Charles Barkley is a very, very rich man, whose fame and celebrity have protected him from the kind of hostility and harassment from the police that thousands of other Americans, especially African-Americans, experience every day. It's easy for Charles Barkley to lecture protesters and looters and mourning families about how to deal with anger. But most Americans can't defuse a "tense" police situation with the aid of celebrity."

Well, which is it?  Professional athletes tend to be richer and more famous than the average joe, but you said there was nothing wrong about with the expressing their opinions on social or political issues?

Well, clearly, Jason Johnson is bad at picking up irony.  In fact, I will leave you with this moment of Zen :

Nevertheless, Barkley's hypocrisy about his own privilege and lack of real knowledge about Ferguson wouldn't be so bad if media outlets didn't keep giving him major opportunities to express his views.