“Though many can forgive injuries, none ever forgave contempt.”
— Ben Franklin
I used to be naive enough to believe that the most important leaders in the country were surrounded by the best and brightest to serve them, and, by hopeful extension, us.
But if they can’t get simple, right-from-wrong matters correct …
In 1990 the first President Bush appointed Arnold Schwarzenegger, whose fame and fortune were predicated on steroids to win international bodybuilding glory, Chairman of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports.
This was an absurd choice, antithetical to both physical fitness and sports. Surely there would be an outcry, widespread ridicule to reverse this misguided decision. But nothing. Everyone loved “Ahh-nold,” scripted hero of adventure movies.
Yesterday, the Biden White House, which has blindly supported ex-men unfairly competing in sports as women as champions of gender equality — an odd explanation for conspicuous, undeniable inequality — pulled another rock as it ignored what was impossible to miss in order to try to score more pandering political points.
President Biden awarded soccer star and gay and female rights activist Megan Rapinoe — repulsive in her obnoxious, self-smitten, classless conduct throughout the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France that thoroughly open-minded Americans were moved to root against our team — the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.
The exemplary medal represents “the prosperity, values, or security of the United States, world peace, or other significant societal, public or private endeavors.”
Yet Rapinoe, during and after that World Cup, established herself as exemplary of unmitigated selfishness and classlessness, starting with her knee-takings during the US anthem, eagerly demonstrating on an international stage her contempt for her country, beneath each citizenship.
In a senseless 13-0 humiliation of Thailand, Rapinoe made sure to stand out as the biggest bully. Her easy goal to make it 9-0 was followed by her abandonment of assisting teammates in order to run the length of the field in nauseating self-aggrandizement.
Hey, without that goal, it would’ve been only 8-0, lots of time left for more!
On Fox, host Rob Stone, ostensibly assigned to wave the American flag, grew disgusted by Rapinoe’s conduct and the US team’s senseless bully-girl brutality. After all, the easiest thing to accomplish in a lopsided game is not to score, kill the clock, protect your dignity, spare your throughly vanquished opponents further humiliation, show them and the world your graceful side.
But as Fox analyst Alexi Lalas spoke hollow rationalizations — “What did you want them to do?” — as if he didn’t know, Stone said, “But 13-0? I understand your point, but this game was done. It became humiliating. It just became an exercise in target practice.”
And smitten by her own, indefensible devices, Rapinoe, the captain of the US team that did dirt to the game and country — even mocking later opponents and their fans after scoring — became the well-deserved villain of the World Cup. Even here.
Yet, en route to the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Rapinoe wasn’t done. In her NYC City Hall speech following the parade to salute the world champs, Rapinoe was unable to address a crowd packed with kids without shouting “motherf—-r!” pure class.
No one on Biden’s nominating staff was aware of any of this? No one did 10 minutes of research? Or were they all good with it, approved it?
Thus, according to the White House, steroids-reliant Arnold Schwarzenegger was the national symbol of physical fitness, and swimmer Lia Thomas, the former William Thomas, fairly competes against biological women.
Yet Rapinoe, Thursday, was awarded America’s highest civilian honor by Biden for “exemplary contributions to the prosperity, values, or security of the United States, world peace, or other significant societal, public or private endeavors.” She met all the qualifications.
Oh no! Broadcast ruined by YES
Since there’s no shaming the bottom-liners who run MLB, the Yankees and YES, this is how it will remain.
This week, Yankees fans again were sentenced to hard labor (for which they must pay) as YES fed us Ryan “Rah Rah” Ruocco and Carlos Beltran in the non-musical remake of “Help!”
We don’t yet know the name of the YES exec who added Beltran, but he’s likely considered a flight risk — if it’s not too late. There’s nothing more to write on the subject other than that Beltran was the worst choice since the Hindenburg was filled with hydrogen.
Ruocco continues to be easily excited by common happenstances, such as the Yanks turning a double play — as if he or we had never before seen such a thing. We just want to watch the ballgame, not attend a pep rally.
Then there was another Rob Manfred Friday Night. As Yanks-Cleveland was delayed by rain until postponed, the exclusive Amazon Prime streaming delivery displayed only a single stationery camera showing rain falling on the field.
There was no audio, no graphics to indicate if the game was still on, no nothing, including DVR capabilities to those who might instead choose to watch something else not going on. This was the paywall version of the Ch. 11 Yule Log.
Also, Friday, Rangers-Mets was hidden from greatest-good view as its appeared on Apple+, where play-by-player and inexhaustible weekly yakker Melanie Newman involuntarily allowed Howie Rose the remaining oxygen. Local radio salvaged the night from additional foresight-barren Manfred destruction.
Obviously, Manfred’s Ready! Wastage! Aim! The streaming plan was unprepared to succeed. Not unless neglect and rotten productions were the bait to purchase MLB-partnered streaming services. In other words, even if you can’t see or hear it, take it or leave it!
SNY makes the right call
In this age of blind capitulation to pitching and batting analytics and optional running to first base, good fundamental baseball still shines like a lighthouse beam in the darkest storm.
Thus, on deck, hit-the-deck Brandon Nimmo’s signal to Dom Smith to slide — and toward the inside of the plate — when Smith scored in the 10th against the Reds, Wednesday, was immediately recognized and admired. OK, it wasn’t a Manfred-certified MLB Network-highlighted bat-flip, but still …
Not that we’re surprised, but Islanders and NHL TV voice Brendan Burke was solid subbing for John Sterling during Yanks at Pirates. He’s a listeners-first pro, even politely suffering Suzyn Waldman’s needless intrusions to identify “a two-seamer” from “a four-seamer.”
Let the record show that under Manfred the Yankees didn’t play on the Fourth of July for the first time since 1915. Not that anything ever before happened, unless you count Lou Gehrig’s 1939 farewell speech and Dave Righetti’s 1983 no-hitter against Boston.
Chris Broussard, Fox’s NBA “expert” who this week strongly suggested, despite empty evidence and evidence to the contrary, that Toronto is a racist town, was low on credibility when he worked for ESPN, where he at least twice took credit for scoops first reported by others.
Pro tennis is now as loaded with as many insufferable creeps — men and women — as the rest of the modern sports junk pile. Rooting interests are now based on the lesser of two weasels. If Nick Kyrgios were hitting a ball against a wall, I’d root for the wall.
Reader Kelly Feniger wonders what Ralph Kiner would do to the Marlins’ Garrett Cooper given that Kiner regularly called Gary Carter Gary Cooper. I think he’d have split the difference and called him Marlin Brando.