So Goodell's "character" requirements which he "drones on" about are pertinent when it comes to Limbaugh, but they fly out the window when Zirin goes to the ends of the earth to defend scumbags like Vick and Burress (who just happen to be African-American). Don't get me wrong--I'm way liberal (far more liberal than our supply-side economics Wall Street-loving president, it seems) and wouldn't, um, produce water for Limbaugh if he was on fire, as they say. I wish NASA had stuck both Limbaugh and Beck on the latest lunar kamikaze mission to the moon. But Zirin, in trying to point out Goodell's hypothetical "hyprocisy," just proves his own.
Has a black athlete ever done or said anything they're culpable for, according to Mr. Zirin? If so, I don't remember it. His constant warblings about grace and forgiveness in America must only apply to athletes he likes. The world is so simple to Zirin that everything can be blamed on racism and/or Republicans. From his ridiculous attempt to find the double standard in the Serena Williams story (check the web letters for actual sensible takes on that incident) to his article on homophobia in football--what's to blame? Christianity, of course. Friggin' Teddy Roosevelt! Wow. While of course Christianity could play a part in it, I find it kind of odd that homophobia in the African-American community was never mentioned, nor were two of the most recent examples of antigay talk I can remember from NFL players, the late Reggie White (although he was a big conservative Christian, so Mr. Zirin is probably conflicted) and his homophobic statements, and Terrell Owens's "if it looks like a rat and smells like a rat" comments on his former QB Jeff Garcia's sexuality. That's not to say many of the redneck white players aren't just as homophobic, I just feel Mr. Zirin wouldn't have such reticence to point them out.
Mr. Zirin, I have to say, comes off like a cartoon character much of the time in his histrionics. He'll defend to the death anyone he judges to be on his "side" and will go out on a limb with some of the most ridiculous analogies possible to attack "them." Actually, "they" do need to be attacked, but emotional, often overstated work like Mr. Zirin's is just fodder the right uses to illustrate the stereotypical "wacky left." The world is a complex, shifting place, and it pays for one to be even-keeled as they navigate it.