An Open Letter to Local Sports Media

3 May

Not that any of them give a shit what I think, but it was a little too long to get out on twitter.  So, a blog post and a few emails, it is.  If any of them choose to respond, I’ll post the reply here.  Yeah, right. 

Please feel free to send this to anybody in the local media who you believe it applies to. My only condition: I want to see their self-righteous, asinine little replies.

If you don’t understand what this is about, you really need to get twitter.  Like, seriously.

To Mr. Varney, Mr. Spain, Mr. Duncan, and whomever it may concern:

I do not presume to speak for all Saints fans.  I know, however, that I speak for many who will agree wholeheartedly with what I have to say.

We do not expect local media, to include sports talk radio, print newspapers, beats on twitter, or professional online bloggers, to be fanboys, to commit to absolute homerism in all respects.  That, my friend, is what people like me are here for.  That’s why I’m an anonymous lowlife with a largely-ignored blog, and you are writing for the most popular paper in the New Orleans area.

What we do expect is a thorough examination of the situation.  It is not enough to repeat the official statements of the NFL or the NFLPA, or for that matter, the players themselves.  See, I can do that.  So can any number of people in the New Orleans area with even an inkling of literacy and reading comprehension.

Journalism should be more than that.  A journalist should be able to process the information and present the flaws in an official statement.  This should happen on both sides of the issue.  If Jonathan Vilma’s statement seems hypocritical, by all means, point it out.  However, we expect the same level of criticism and skepticism when the league hires an “unbiased” source, paid by only one side, to review “strong” evidence and publish an opinion of it.

We have no problem with a straight accounting of the statements of that unbiased source.  Present it clearly, without editing and free of bias.  Then, when you recognize the absolute lunacy of an employee (and that’s what this person is, an employee) of the league offering the unbiased opinion we’re all asking for, point it out.  Call White, and say, “Please explain how a person can be paid by one side, offered evidence by one side, and give an unvarnished view of the situation.”

Go after the evidence.  If it’s an open-and-shut case, only the most deluded fan will persist in his or her conspiracy theory.  Even I, a proud homer, will accept an actual case if it is based on fact.  Even I will have to admit that the players and the coaches are guilty of a crime against the Shield, and back down.

But that’s not the case.  Not yet.  The players have not admitted guilt.  Vilma has made the most adamant statement of innocence I have ever seen, and the NFLPA claims to have not received the evidence.

Stop telling us we’re delusional (as some of you have, notably, on twitter).  Stop telling us theres NOTHING TO SEE HERE.  Stop telling us that the league is only doing what it has to do, because you don’t know that.  You can’t.  You don’t have all the facts.  Address the problems with the bounty case, and let us know you’re pursuing all angles to acquire the 18,000 pages of evidence the league claims to have.

It’s not unprofessional for a reporter to state the absurdity of the official position that White is an unbiased source.  It’s what the reading public expects: journalism, not just “reporting.”

You have the power to bring this to the light of day, and if the league is right and true and just, you have the power to shut people like me up.

Frankly, I welcome it.

The Angry Who Dat

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One Response to “An Open Letter to Local Sports Media”

  1. Magyver May 14, 2012 at 1:11 pm #

    Not bad, not bad at all. I should point out however that in my opinion Spain and Varney are less guilty of letting bias slip out than Jeff D is.

    Varney and Spain likely are following a corporate policy of being neutral, which is unfortunate. My opinion is that they should be representing the people who pay their salaries and the bills at the Times-Picayune, namely the Saints fans. They are not, to a large degree. The good thing is that you and I don’t have to carry that burden.

    It’s been all I could do lately not to go after a couple of his articles; if we ever talk I’ll explain why. Like I said in a previous comment this afternoon we should get together.

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