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Blog Entry

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

Posted on: May 8, 2011 12:25 pm
Edited on: May 8, 2011 3:39 pm
 
LeBron James calls a reporter's question "retarded" which is not cool. Not cool at all. Or suprising. 
Posted by Matt Moore

LeBron James isn't a moron. He's just incredibly, unbelievably immature. It comes off in how he carries himself, from throwing away his warm-ups to "The Decision" to his rampant flubs in the media. I say this not as one of the scribes who has habitually and constantly crushed James for his ego, but as a writer who doesn't think wanting to change job locations or positions is a terrible thing, even if you do it in an impolite way, and who has defended James' game from attacks on his basketball character. It's just pretty evident that James is immature. It's not always a bad or avoidable thing to be immature. Few people in their early 20's really are, and James' natrual progression in that area was surely stunted by his god-like treatment he received from high school on, and from entering the NBA right out of high school. But James is old enough now to know better. And he doesn't.  And we have yet another example. 

In response to a reporter's question to Dwyane Wade regarding whether the play that injured Rajon Rondo was "dirty," James covered his mouth and uttered "That's retarded" under his breath. You know, because that won't get picked up because he covered his mouth despite the giant microphone in front of his mouth. 

So here we are again, back where we were with the Kobe Bryant slur situation. As Larry Brown Sports discusses, there are a number of ways this is different from that situation. But we're going to have the same dynamics going on. Those who defend James religiously will point to the hyper-sensitive nature of society, those who always seek to criticize LeBron will use this as yet another prime opportunity to, and everyone else will filter somewhere along the "outrage vs. outrage over the outrage" line. And nothing will really change, which is the sad part. 

Last week, in trying to describe something to my wife that was idiotic, my mind blanked. I actually said "it's... it's retarded." It was only my wife and I in the room, but I felt the need to apologize and correct myself. I'm not sharing this as an example of moral superiority, but instead of how it can happen to anyone.,It's got to be hard to always say the right thing when you're surrounded by microphones. But this wasn't a mistake, it was a deliberate comment.

"What's the big deal?!" critics of modern society will cry! "It's not like he called someone a slur like Kobe!" Let's start by recognizing that these are two separate incidents, unrelated to one another, and there's room for us to look at both through the lens of their impact on society. The use of such a term only propogates a cultural and societal feeling of disgust and derision for those physically or mentally handicapped. The actual clinical definition describes a lowered intelligence quotient, but the term isn't used in that manner with any discretion or consideration. I'm far from an expert on physical and mental disability, but it's pretty plain that anything which would casually deride victims of such a condition is unacceptable. Sticks and stones and what not, but James' comment still sets an example This isn't a high bar, here, people. 

Is it fair that James' comment should be singled out? No, and that's on us to try and provide a world where our language says what it means, and cuts who it should and them only.  But James said it on national television after he yet again showed that the Celtics can make him irrelevant, and this criticism is the price of the millions of dollars, the "global empire" and the adulation of millions. Your words do matter, LeBron. You may want to take stock and realize that. 

You know, once you grow up.  
Comments

Since: Jan 13, 2011
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:41 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

I actually said "it's... it's retarded." It was only my wife and I in the room, but I felt the need to apologize and correct myself.

ohhhhh please ... who is this girlyman fool? Do you excuse yourself when you're alone and cutz the cheese? Something tells me ole Matt was never part of any organized sport.



Since: Dec 20, 2006
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:40 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

You guys are the retards. Lebron is 26 and in his 8th year playing in the NBA. That being said Kobe's slur would have been acurrate if it was directed towards James bc he is f*gg*t.



Since: May 8, 2011
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:39 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

People do not like him.  He is handsome and rich, he has a pulpit that people are drawn to and that will tend to make people jealous.



Since: Jan 13, 2011
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:37 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

but we only figure out right or wrong with public debatre to which journalists play a vital role.

lofl ... what a steaming pantload.



Since: May 8, 2011
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:36 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

Yes, that is true.  Some words like the N word are to be used by the correct peoples in their owns place.  Weather is to skinhead or whatsever.

The youth - as the world really is - the youth, sorta has society in their hands being in popular media.

Take cable television for example....here is the United States....late at night it is Adult Feature, but actually is not adult.  It is crap that is fed to the late night crowd and why.....They want you to subscribe to the really adult channels.

Let's be real in society....certain people do not want to be called certain things, and understandable....but get over it.

We all die in the end.  Life is short and should not be wasted on SILLY things.

It is like the idea of slavery.  It was over a 150 years ago, but people want to act as if they expreienced it.

And then they want to put a face on it as in who is responsible for it.....?  They put the face that they want to on it.

Stupid people say the stupidest things....that will always be true.

I can say this.....the world is what you want it to be and not what others want.
 



Since: Jan 7, 2007
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:33 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

It took you 3 minutes to read it? You are slow.



Since: Aug 19, 2006
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:33 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

When did 24 become childhood?  At 24 and a pro for 5 years with all of the advisors and money and fame he should know better.  Why blame the journalist for reporting a fact?  This is what journalists do. Lebron screwed up, accept the fact.  It might not matter to you because you are ok with insensitive language, that is your right, but we only figure out right or wrong with public debatre to which journalists play a vital role.



Since: Feb 19, 2007
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:30 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

What a bunch of preachy, overly paternalistic garbage.

If you want to get on your soapbox and proselytize to the masses, learn how to proofread.  Or how to spell correctly so the need for proofreading isn't so gargantuan.



Since: Jan 13, 2011
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:28 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

I want the last 3 min of my life back for reading this dumb story

Agreed ... journalists hate being called out so they sit, write and whine. Calling a reporters question retarded is nowhere near as retarded as some foureyed geek taking the time to write and whine about it.

Matt Moore ... you're either a retarded moron or you've never been 24.



Since: Aug 19, 2006
Posted on: May 8, 2011 3:23 pm
 

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

I know this is a minority position on this site, but I agree with Matt Moore and thought this blod well written and reasoned.  Nobody said lebron is a bad person or that this was an issue of national security, but words do matter and people lucky enough to serve as role models for children (and many adults by the looks of it) should be held responsible for their word choice.  This is not something requiring a punishment, but we should notice it, point it out and hope that we as a socierty can get better at being kind and caring.  Lebron is a good bal  player, that doesn't make him infallible.  In fact it makes hime subject to closre scrutiney.  Yet he acts like he has free reign and is somehow owed greater leniency.  Athletes should be held to greater standards because they are overpaid and overhyped in our society.  The children deserve it.


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