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.  

Since: Mar 5, 2010
Posted on: May 9, 2011 4:55 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

I work with over 100 people that are developmentally disabled. The word retard is used too often and too loosely in society. LeBron surely needs to grow up. To equate the word dumb with retard just goes to show you that there is no regard for the population that it hurts. Trust me, I would not call any one of the DD population I work with dumb. I find far more dumb people in the population that isn't disabled.

Since: Aug 27, 2006
Posted on: May 9, 2011 4:30 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

This article and this reporter are "retarded"!

Since: May 9, 2011
Posted on: May 9, 2011 4:13 pm

Right answer, wrong words

LeBron was right. The question was dumb. Or meant to get a heated response (so to speak).

And you're right that LeBron used bad judgement when he said "retarded."

Still, the Q&A dance of provocative questions vs. safe answers makes sports reporting a mighty dull game, too much of the time.

Since: Aug 20, 2006
Posted on: May 9, 2011 2:58 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

Seriously?  The defending champs get swept by a team they were predicted to manhandle, and you want to write an article about a semi-educated, self-absorbed millionaire mumbling a slur that may or may not have been warranted (or correctly applied)?  Nice reporting.  This is yet another brick in the wall that is dysfunctional professional sports.  We (as fans) put up with these moronic "news" people who like to report on everything BUT the freakin sports they are charged with covering, while we (as fans) also support the enrichment and idolization of individuals that by no means warrant our praise or financial support.  Why pay a reporter/newswriter who cannot objectively report on the topic they are charged with covering?!  Why pay (large sums of) money to see drug addicted, raping, spouse abusing, immoral, egotistical social misfits while failing to adequately compensate soldiers, educators and civil servants??

Since: Sep 29, 2008
Posted on: May 9, 2011 2:31 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

Since: May 9, 2011
Posted on: May 9, 2011 2:04 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

well said..... n i think dey needed dat definition

Since: May 9, 2011
Posted on: May 9, 2011 2:02 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

wtf is wrng wit dis reporter he is making a mountain out of a mole hill. y even report dis shyt where is his proof he uttered it under his breath. wow bs

Since: Sep 4, 2007
Posted on: May 9, 2011 1:09 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

person  is stupid, obtuse, or ineffective in someway: a hopeless social retard.

I think the shoe fits.  I am pretty sure Lebron was not trying to put down anyone affected by Downs syndrome or something like it.  I think he meant the above definition in regard to the reporter.  If you have never been blessed to have a reporter interview you consider yourself lucky.  They ask some of the most asinine, controversial questions imaginable.  Then they do like they are doing here and try to pin it back on you.

Since: Sep 4, 2007
Posted on: May 9, 2011 12:07 pm

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

Guys guys...

Example of proper usage of your - to indicate personal ownership.  For example, "That ball is yours."

Proper usage of you're (which is a contraction of you and are).  You're a retard.

To check to see if you've used the right wording, write out "you are" in place of you're or your, whichever you've used.

Sentence 1.)  That ball is you are's.  This sentence does not make sense, don't do it.
Sentence 2.)  You are a retard.  This sentence makes sense and therefore could use the contraction "you're".

Incorrectly using your and yet trying to show intelligence by using a word like omniscient in the same sentence is just fail.

Since: May 12, 2010
Posted on: May 9, 2011 11:20 am

LeBron calls a reporter's question 'retarded'

Can tell your from Cleveland "retard"

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or