How can this man get away with saying this?

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How can this man get away with saying this?

Postby Bill Glasheen » Thu Feb 23, 2006 9:41 pm

With time I have less and less tolerance for stereotype and racist thinking. As a younger lad, I understood it because I believed and lived it. Fortunately life's experiences happily have shattered my narrow view of the world. Life's education is mostly about discovering the universal truth of man's inherent ignorance, and learning what to do about it. There's nothing like a bit of national and world travel and a study of history to broader your horizons and make you appreciate "humankind."

But the thing that bugs me is the "protected class" syndrome. To some extent this is permitted. For instance it's OK to be self deprecating. But what really bothers me is people who should know better who accuse others of certain behavior, and thereby display it in their protest.

If I was the executive of this gentleman's network, the very least I would do is drag this fellow in my private office and scorch his ears. Public apology may not be necessary, but a little bit of "education" in my view would be appropriate. In my company a man could get fired in a matter of minutes for saying stuff like this. And it should NOT matter who said it. Fair is fair; nobody gets a pass.

I can't figure out what bothers me more, the fact that he had the balls to make such inflammatory remarks or the fact that he might be ignorant enough to believe his own words.

Am I off base? I'm holding my words here. Tell me what you think.

- Bill


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Finally, tonight, the Winter Games. Count me among those who don’t like them and won’t watch them ... Because they’re so trying, maybe over the next three weeks we should all try too. Like, try not to be incredulous when someone attempts to link these games to those of the ancient Greeks who never heard of skating or skiing. So try not to laugh when someone says these are the world’s greatest athletes, despite a paucity of blacks that makes the Winter Games look like a GOP convention. Try not to point out that something’s not really a sport if a pseudo-athlete waits in what’s called a kiss-and-cry area, while some panel of subjective judges decides who won ... So if only to hasten the arrival of the day they’re done, when we can move on to March Madness — for God’s sake, let the games begin.
REALsports with Bryant Gumbel
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Postby Stryke » Thu Feb 23, 2006 9:45 pm

He should check out Jamaicas bobsled team !!!


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Postby Bill Glasheen » Thu Feb 23, 2006 9:52 pm

Bryant wrote:
Like, try not to be incredulous when someone attempts to link these games to those of the ancient Greeks who never heard of skating or skiing.

Maybe we should follow Bryant's advice, and get back to Greek basics. If we want to get authentic and "traditional", let's get on with the tradition of performing all sports in the buff! :P

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Hey, I'm right with the wife on watching the women's gymnastics. 8)

- Bill
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Postby Bill Glasheen » Thu Feb 23, 2006 10:25 pm

A few interesting letters I found posted on the REALsports forum board are included below.

I'm not touching these. They are what they are...

- Bill
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Postby Bill Glasheen » Thu Feb 23, 2006 10:26 pm

Bryant Gumbel Olympic remarks

HBO, Mr. Gumbel and anyone else that cares to listen.

Very rarely will I ever take the time out of my day to respond to something that I feel is beyond my control. Your comments regarding the Olympics the other night are just that. However, for reasons beyond my understanding I feel compelled to write this message. I am an athlete, not an olympian mind you but an athlete. I have played at a very high level and I am not oblivious to the fact that racism does exist in all areas of life including sports. However, your remarks the other day are an example of why the issues of race are so quickly used in todays society. The fact that you downplay the importance or the athletic ability of these great athletes because your particular race is not involved really shows that your own personal racial views are more important to you and your company than your ability to simply report on the topic. I understand that you can editorialize all you want on this show. It is a nice luxury and perhaps you made these comments for a reason as simple as trying to stir some publicity for a career than seems to be slowing down. If that is the case more power to you. You got me to bite. It strikes me that I never recall hearing these sentiments when you actually got to cover the olympics on a major network. Is this more about your personal career than a political statement? The fact is that countries with cold climates and athletes who grow up in areas of our country that provide winter sports are the athletes who will go to the winter olympics. I am from a very flat big city in the midwest. Not a lot of chances to take bobsled lessons as a kid. Therefore I probably won't end up in the olympics. Is that because I am white? or black? The last point I want to make is that by making this a black and white issue, you have slighted all the athletes of other races. There are many countries who are represented in the winter olympics and not the summer. And the opposite is true as well. Because there are fewer African American athletes at the winter olympics does that mean that for instance the Asian contingency does not really matter when it comes to the race issue? I think your comments are way off base and completely uncalled for. Someone in your position who still has some voice (although small) in the public could have a much better influence on the race issues we deal with in society. Instead you took your time to show your disgust at an event that is open to the entire world and showed how close minded you really are on the topic of race. I find it disappointing that this is not getting covered in the main stream media when other people in your position have come under great heat for similar comments. Do I wish there was more equality? Absolutely. Do I think we need to work toward a world were race is not an issue? Definitely. Do I think we will get there in my life time. With comments like yours, I highly doubt it. I think you should contemplate why you actually made these comments and explain yourself to the audience. With no further information on your feelings I have to say that I will probably not continue to watch your show and probably go without HBO. I wish you the best and hope some day you will be able to view an event like the olympics with an open heart and be proud of the people who are representing our country. I know they may not look like you and I but they represent the United States of America. During the summer Olympics we send a large number of African Americans to the Olympics. Do they represent each race from our country? Not always but they do represent our country as a whole. I would like to wish the Olympians from every race and every country the best of luck and the greatest spirit of competition. Don't concern yourself with statements from close mined individuals like Bryant Gumbel. You represent your country and for that we are proud. Mr. Gumbel and HBO - Looking forward to your apology. Otherwise, HBO needs to examine why you are there.

KenK
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Postby Bill Glasheen » Thu Feb 23, 2006 10:29 pm

cyc03

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Re: Bryant Gumbel Olympic remarks
Posted: 22 Feb 2006 10:11 AM (50 of 54)


Gumbel's lack of professionalism at his best is classic. His style of journalism and commentary went out of style and has long been played out at NBC!! He is a has been. His disrespect of winter olympic athletes and blacks who participate in them is nauseating. I am suprised that Gumbel would play such a race card being that he left his black beautiful african american wife for the traditional blonde hair cookie cutter image of white america. Stop straddling the fence. Frankly as an african american female martial artist (yes we are athletes as well) I request that you turn in your black card!!
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Re: How can this man get away with saying this?

Postby Valkenar » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:06 pm

Bill Glasheen wrote:Am I off base? I'm holding my words here. Tell me what you think.


No, I think you're pretty much right. He hasn't "gotten away" with it yet though.

What was the context for his comments? I'm surprised he'd just randomly lash out like that against anything.
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Postby Gene DeMambro » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:18 pm

I was kinda hoping someone would mention this.

Since the 1980 games in Lake Placid, I've been hooked on the Olympics - both Winter and Summer. Eric Heiden winning 5 gold medals in speedskating was what did it for me. And, of course, the hockey team's exploits didn't hurt either....

Gumbel MAY have a point, in that if African Americans make up the rosters on so many sports teams in the US of A, what gives in that they are so rare in the Winter Olympics? Geography perhaps - maybe black folks don't live in those areas where winter sports common. Economics maybe - it takes a lot of money to groom an excellent hockey player or figure skater, and despite the stipends from the USOC, the vast majority of athletes live hand to mouth on whatever sponsorships they can get. Who knows....

But these are the WINTER Olympics, organized to showcase WINTER sports and these winter sports were developed in places like Scandanavia, and Canada and the Netherlands. So are we really all that surprised when Swedes, Norwegians, Canandians and the Dutch do so well?

What Rush Limbaugh learned the hard way when he opened up his drug-addled mouth and inserted his foot Bryant Gumbel may learn yet - not everything in American society is driven by race.

Gene
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Postby Bill Glasheen » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:18 pm

The comments came at the end of one of his REALsports shows - just before the Winter Olympics started. It didn't make a big splash in the mainstream press. I was surprised... But the folks on ESPN radio were having a blast with it.

Some things are ridiculous enough to be funny. The "Mike and Mike in the Morning Show" rates "stupid comments of the week" and asks viewers to vote their preferences. If I'm not mistaken, Bryant was last week's winner.

- Bill
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Postby Stryke » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:22 pm

Like, try not to be incredulous when someone attempts to link these games to those of the ancient Greeks who never heard of skating or skiing.


I thought it was about the spirit of competition , how silly of me ....



Maybe we should follow Bryant's advice, and get back to Greek basics


Pankraton !!! , chariot racing !! , boxing !! , wrestling !! ...

Hell the ratings would be awesome !!

lets bring back the Biff !!!
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Postby Gene DeMambro » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:31 pm

What does Gumbel have to say about Vonetta Flowers?

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A track star in Alabama, she was recruited to be a Bobsleigh brakeman (brakewoman)...and won a Gold in Salt Lake City.

And what about "Miami Ice"?

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A former inline skater from Miami, she's of Cuban descent and an Olympic medalist in Speedskating. Notice Gumbel never mentioend anything about hispanics in his diatribe.

And then we have Shani Davis:

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Native of Chicago, he's the first Black American to win an individual medal.

Michelle Kwan (the poor dear):

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Two time Olympic medalist and not what you would call Lilly White, nor is Apollo Ohno:

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Postby Gene DeMambro » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:33 pm

Winter Sports in the buff, Bill! 8O

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Postby Stryke » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:38 pm

next he`ll be saying white man cant jump !!!! 8O :shocked!:
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Postby Panther » Fri Feb 24, 2006 12:36 am

Every race should be represented in every sport in direct proportion to their percentage of the total population...

Let's start with the NBA!

:lol: :rofl: :mrgreen: :splat:
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Postby Bill Glasheen » Fri Feb 24, 2006 3:25 am

You laugh...

Check out the gold medal winners in basketball at the Athens 2004 Olympics.

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Oh my!!!

I love it when an honest, hard-working group of humans blow the hell out of a stereotype. Nobody told them they couldn't jump. Nobody told them they were supposed to bow down and lose to the NBA Megastars.

Humility is a good thing. And so is the sheer joy of "earning it" on the floor of life. 8)

- Bill

P.S. That's Argentina, in case you didn't know. They were nothing short of fabulous.
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