Blog Entry

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

Posted on: January 9, 2009 5:56 pm

When Charles Barkley admitted losing millions at the blackjack table, the NBA and broadcast partner TNT wanted no part of it publicly. League officials warned Barkley privately about his damaging behavior -- especially in light of the Tim Donaghy scandal -- but no official action was taken by the NBA or TNT against the large and loquacious Hall of Famer-turned-TV personality.

Given the embarrassing nature of Barkley's arrest on suspicion of drunken driving Dec. 31 in Arizona, there was no running from Barkley's latest skirmish with the law. This was the kind of lapse in judgment the NBA can't afford from its most famous airwaves ambassador. So in response to the news that Barkley will take an indefinite leave of absence from his TNT broadcast duties, I say good. It's the right move.

Call it a slap on the wrist if you like, but neither the NBA nor TNT is a court of law. Barkley, 45, had a blood-alcohol content nearly twice the legal limit, according to toxicology tests, and was in too much of a hurry to secure a romantic rendevous to bother stopping at a red light. The legal process will handle that. An intern with TNT or the NBA, for that matter, arrested under similar circumstances no doubt would have become another unemployment statistic by now. That's not the point; I think we can all accept by now that athletes and all types of celebrities are treated differently in the workplace and in society.

The point is that TNT -- presumably with Stern's blessing -- did the right thing. Not only that, they did something no one -- not a single referee, coach, opposing player, or even Stern -- has ever been able to do.

They silenced Charles Barkley. The TNT telecasts will be a lot less entertaining without him. But for the good of everyone involved, it's a silence we should welcome and applaud.




Category: NBA

Since: Sep 22, 2006
Posted on: January 10, 2009 9:29 pm

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

There is so much irony in DUI laws now that emphasizing a breath test nearly twice the legal limit in this article is a joke.  The federal government enticed states to lower legal BAC limits to .08% in order to receive federal highway funding.  Having a .08% BAC is far from what I would consider too impaired to drive, but to emphasize that Barkley was nearly twice the legal limit means he must have had a BAC of .15% or less.  While I would agree that there would be some impairment at that level and one should not be behind the wheel of an automobile, it's unlikely that a man the size of Barkley would even appear drunk at that level.  Let's not make this out to be more than it is, which is a simple (not enhanced) DUI allegation.  Barkley is being supported by his employer, TNT, and is hopefully seeking treatment.  He will step away from his duties for a short period while he re-gathers himself, and he will be back.  The world will definitely NOT stop spinning over this minor incident. 

Since: Dec 10, 2006
Posted on: January 10, 2009 8:18 pm

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

Dubzy- you are entitled to your opinion but I feel your post downplays a serious situation. "Give the guy a break"- we are way past that point with Sir Charles. He has a responsibility to live up to a standard.

She he be chastised forever? No- and most sensible people will hope he gets it together and makes a comeback.

Back to the point of the article. You can't have all this happen and have him back in front of millions of viewers with his arrogant approach to journalism as if nothing had happened. The leave is appropriate. Hopefully a changed and more humble Charles Barkelay will return to broadcasting sometime in the future.

Since: Aug 22, 2007
Posted on: January 10, 2009 6:16 pm

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

Barkley is a funny guy but when it comes down to it he is definitely no "role model".  The guy is a racist who suffers from an addiction problem with gambling and it seems probably a drinking problem as well that blew up in his face over the weekend.  It's about time this happened.  I'm tired of hearing him bad mouth people when he has no right to talk at all

Since: Nov 16, 2008
Posted on: January 10, 2009 5:21 pm

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

I am a huge Barkley fan and I think he has issues he has got to fix but come on.  There are lots of americans every weekend that if pulled over would fail the test and get a DUI.  He has a drinking problem should get it fixed but this isn't the worst thing an athlete or celebrity has done.  Wasn't long ago I read I column here about Ray Lewis and his leadership but yet he was charged with Murder!!  Come on give him a chance to right himself.

Since: Dec 31, 2007
Posted on: January 10, 2009 2:51 pm

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

i guess nobody who comments on this has ever done anything that they are ashamed of in their lives, comon you are all full of it

Since: Nov 27, 2007
Posted on: January 10, 2009 12:07 pm

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

He did go to jail, douche!   Barkley is a DICKY. 

Since: Dec 10, 2006
Posted on: January 10, 2009 11:29 am

Grow up...

I went off line and took a few minutes to think about what I read in these threads. I love reading posts and articles. I love reading opinions that differ from mine. But reading all these personal attacks on individuals really upsets me.

It is time for many of the posters on this site to either grow up, get a life or learn some social skills. In the world we all deal with differing opinions, different perspectives on a daily basis- it is what makes the world an interesting place. Writing something that you are not interested in or you don't agree with does not make Berger or any other writer an a$#hole or does any other poster on this site deserve to be insulted. Too many people are using anonimity to behave badly.

Sometimes I love this site- sometimes I get so frustrated with the ignorance from some wanna be anonimous post that I feel like ending my affiliation here- GROW UP and write your opinions with some respect. Lets enjoy the debate- after all it would be a boring site if we all agreed now wouldn't it?

Since: Apr 8, 2008
Posted on: January 10, 2009 11:19 am

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

Its about time somebody did something, even if it was only a time out. As for that other morons comments about Fatso being tnts gravy train and they would lose ratings, ha if anything they would gain more of a audience. Sir round stinks of poo, good for tnt


Since: Apr 11, 2007
Posted on: January 10, 2009 11:17 am

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

Barkley does not live in one of those other countries.  In this country he is innocent until proven guilty.  I do not condone driving drunk, but he has not been convicted, and the reports of his blood alcohol level being released is totally unethical.  Specifics of cases are supposed to be kept private, and not leaked to the public for a public media trial before the actual trial.

Gambling is not illegal.  Lets try not to convict him of drunk driving for not paying his legal gambling debt in a timely manner.  If Barkley was not a public figure, no one would know about the gambling or DUI.

If Barkley actually chose to take a leave of absense I dont have a problem with the LOA.  But if Turner forced him out because of the media coverage before he goes to trial, I dont lke it. Innocent until proven guilty, and the media is not who gets to judge his trial.

With that said, I have no idea why people who are in the public eye are not smart enough to get a cab when they have had too much.  Its safer, and it will cost a lot less in the long run.  He makes hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, pay the $50 for a cab ride home, to your booty call, or wherever else you might be going.  Be smart enough so that you do not have to go through a media trial, get a cab.

Since: Dec 10, 2006
Posted on: January 10, 2009 10:26 am

Somebody finally stands up to Barkley

I think this is a good article and yes it is news worthy. And the story could have gone deeper into the dilemma between doing the right thing or turning a blind eye for the ratings that Barkley draws. All too often ratings, winning etc are put ahead of doing the right thing.

Look everyone including Barkely deserves the benefit of the doubt- a DUI on its own from some squeeky clean guy- an apology and some treatment and lets move on. But with Barkely its been much more than this one incident. And through TNT he is still affiliated with the game so he has to be held to the standard that the league wants to be held to- heavy gambling, DUI, guns/ shootings (not in Barkeleys case), hanging with drug dealers.. all this crap is below the standard for these highly paid role models- players, play by play guys, coaches- everyone.

So yes it is the right move and it is newsworthy because too often pro teams, college teams, networks turn a blind eye because it IS all about winning and money- so guys think they are above the law.

God bless these new stars in the league like Chris Bosh, Dwight Howard, D Wade, Lebron, Brandon Roy, Joe Johnson that fly under the radar. I am sure they are not angels but really- they let their playing do their talking, and they stay away from trouble in public. These are the guys who get it- they are living a priviliged life and with that comes some responsibility.


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