Skip to comments.A Tale of Two Losers-Great Article-Fantastic Analysis of Modern Day Liberalism
Posted on 11/24/2004 12:30:00 PM PST by gina girl
Two recent events in the world of professional sports offer important insights into American life today.
The NFL story concerns an ad ABC TV showed before Monday Night Football to promote its hit show "Desperate Housewives." As described by USA Today, the ad "showed towel-clad actress Nicollette Sheridan trying to entice Philadelphia Eagles star Terrell Owens to skip the game. He agrees as she drops the towel and rushes into his arms." ABC and the NFL have apologized.
The NBA story concerns the worst American sports riot in memory. At the Detroit arena, members of the Indiana Pacers ran into the stands and fought with fans after fighting with Detroit Pistons players.
Three important lessons:
First, let's finally stop repeating the false notion that big business has conservative values. Big business has no values. Big businesses are concerned with making money for their stockholders. Nothing else matters to publicly owned companies.
Liberals perpetuate the falsehood of big business as conservative for three reasons: They have a materialist view of the world (just about everything is explainable by economic status and motives; it aids in getting people to vote Democrat); many people resent the amorality of big companies; and it seems to counter the argument that the major news media are liberal -- "How could the news media possibly be liberal when they are all owned by large corporations!"
If ABC or Fox or any other network could increase ratings by showing an orgy during "Captain Kangaroo," they would.
Second, it is yet another example of how deep the values divide in America is that liberal commentators overwhelmingly ridiculed concern with ABC showing the raunchy promo right before televising the widely watched Monday Night Football game. From The New York Times sports pages to USA Today's editorial page, there was annoyance with those who objected to the promo, not with the promo itself.
For example, many liberal commentators offered the novel idea that if the football player -- or Janet Jackson -- had been white, few would have objected. The only other liberal annoyance was that a woman was portrayed as a sex object. Nothing about protecting children or the concept of public decency.
Liberal opinion makers tend to have little regard for an issue that deeply concerns most conservatives -- how high or low the decency level of public life is. That is why liberals are more likely to be apathetic toward public cursing as well as to public displays of sexual behavior. Indeed, they consider it the height of conservative hypocrisy for Republicans to order an R-rated movie in their hotel rooms, or curse privately and then object to such behaviors when done publicly.
Yet the difference (which is lost on some conservatives as well) is enormous, aside from what children will see. For those -- conservative or liberal -- who do not see the difference between public and private behavior, I cite the simple example of a man relieving himself. In private it is perfectly appropriate; in public it is highly inappropriate.
In all liberal societies, people are losing a sense of what is appropriate. For most liberals today, the issue of appropriate behavior pales in comparison to prescription drug prices and other economic concerns. That is why Janet Jackson's breast baring at the NFL Super Bowl and the ABC promo are no big deal to most liberals. Yet, to most social conservatives, they represent a society in decline. If you wanted a clear values difference, that is about as clear as it gets.
Third, regarding the fan-inspired riot in Detroit, it is widely believed that alcohol played a major role in the fans' behavior -- such as screaming obscenities at players and throwing objects at them. The availability of alcohol at sporting events despite the fact that fan behavior obviously deteriorates as games progress and self-control weakens is another example of big business putting profits above everything.
But there is a deeper lesson.
From the beginning of the crusade against tobacco I have argued that the war against tobacco was a sign of a morally confused, if not morally lost, generation. That this generation chose to make war on smoking (which is dangerous to one's health but leads to no evil) rather than on alcohol (which accompanies most child abuse, spousal beatings, acquaintance rape and other violent crimes) was almost all one needed to know about the elite's changed moral priorities since the last crusade against a vice (Prohibition).
When I was a kid, people got dressed up to go to ballgames, and the worst words fans screamed were "you're a bum" or "kill the ump." But, of course, many people smoked. Today there is no smoking even at outdoor stadiums, but many fans scream obscenities and routinely act like lowlifes. This is because we have substituted preoccupation with smoking for preoccupation with cursing. We have, in short, put concern with health over concern with character.
One can learn a lot about life from sports. Unfortunately, however, as far as professional basketball and football are concerned, the lessons to be learned are largely negative.
Maybe we should stay home for a while.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Dennis Prager is a nationally syndicated radio talk show host, columnist and author of four books, including Think a Second Time (HarperCollins), containing 44 of his essays.
Great article. Thanks!
Football in particular seems to have ossified. In particular, there don't seem to be more than one or two teams, if that, who can run the ball predictably anymore.
The Monday Night Football incident is a sure sign that the NFL has "run its course," so to speak, from a fan's perspective. The NFL has so completely saturated the market from a sports fan's perspective that it's only growth prospect is in selling the kind of silly crap that we now see before, during, and after NFL games.
The NFL "jumped the shark" when it began marketing the Super Bowl as an extravaganza instead of as a sporting event. Any serious football fan will tell you that over the last couple of decades the conference championship games have been more interesting than the Super Bowls. The reason for this is simple: the Super Bowl is aimed at an audience that doesn't know much about football (typically suburban women). Once the NFL fully saturated that market, they had to move on to the final frontier -- adolescent kids (which explains why two morons like Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake were the featured performers at the halftime show last year).
The Terrell Owens controversy is simply the natural extension of the "non-fan" marketing concept from the Super Bowl to Monday Night Football.
I'm close to throwing in the towel on pro sports of all types.
Emmit Smith is a hero of mine. He is a righteous and rugged man who is still going, adding more and more yards to his record each game.
But he is a dying breed of sportsman and I cant stand to watch pro sports continue to degenerate into a bunch of thugs plays kids games. That is all it is and I am not going to patronize it any more, methinks.
To continue doing so would be to participate in the moral destruction of America.
Ok, it is true that liberals saw Janet Jackson bare breast as no big deal, and it is true that they are dismissive of the difference between public and private behavior.
Why don't they see that breaking down the barrier between public and private behavior is coarsening us? Is it that liberals see all bad behavior (incorrectly) as arising from subjugation by white males?
Thanks for this post. I am especially amused by the anti-tobacco diatribes of the elites. Prager rightly points out that alcohol is responsible for more abuse and violence than smoking, which is a personal choice. I've been sober 15 years but I smoke. One made my life unmanageable, the other doesn't. When I went to Madrid a couple of holidays ago, the city was trying to pass a bill that would get prostitutes inside and get smokers outside. Kind of kills the mystique of the after-sex cigarette! The nanny state is creeping up all over the world, and people care more about others lighting up than Muslims flying planes into our buildings and murdering filmmakers on the streets... go figure!
| One very weird thing
is that as every "pro" sport
real pro-wrestling still
has entertainment value.
Not role-models, but . . .
What we are seeing is the last days moral degradation. If you look at any dieing movements they are most extreme just before their death.
I see you are just shilling of the Big Chip lobby. /snicker
>>The biggest losers of all are the NFL and NBA, because they are two professional sports leagues on the brink of a steep decline
What about the NHL which isn't even playing due to a lockout...will fans discover life will still go on
with no "shot-score!!!!!!" ?
Thats because nobody cares about Hockey outside of Canuckistan and a few blue collar burgs in the Northeast and Upper Midwest.
"We have, in short, put concern with health over concern with character."
The NHL has a lot of growth potential, mainly because it is still a "cult" sport that appeals to a very narrow segment of sports fans. It is still a long way from "running its course," even though it will probably never reach the level of appeal that the NFL and NBA have reached.
Well Mr Prager, you ain't seen nothing net. Fly across the Pond and go to an Italian Serie A soccer match (or better yet, one in Greece) and you will know why... ;-)
Liberal opinion makers tend to have little regard for an issue that deeply concerns most conservatives -- how high or low the decency level of public life is.
Most liberals are vulgar perverts. They have a very deep emotional discomfort with and hostility toward traditional morality. They approach all of these issues with a great deal of vulgar aggressiveness and ravenous anti-Christian hatred. As a result, American culture becomes one big floating stag party, complete with strippers, prostitutes, and amoral interns making jokes about knee pads. Sitcoms dominated by genital humor and an adolescent mentality. Rap and HipHop songs about raping women and doing damage to their anatomy. This is the America of liberal secular humanism. Meanwhile, mention of "Christmas" is banned while the butt sex mafia forces everyone to have to hear about and deal with sodomy on an almost daily basis as if it were the most important issue in human life.
The Clinton years were typical of this coarsening of American public life. Clinton directed the White House like it was his own pay-per-view porn film. He was cheered on by liberals in the Big Media, in Ivy League academic, in Hollywood, and the blue states.
They all seem to want the porn counter-culture to become the norm in American life. The mythology of "Separation of Church and State" is invoked at every turn to justify and rationalize this perverse style of culture.
Even now, with John Kerry handed a resounding defeat due to "moral values" issues, they still don't get it.
Yeah, but they do know (and will soon find out) that payback is a b***h.
Liberals: the sum of man reduced to his private parts.
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