Check this, coming in the aftermath of the brouhaha in Detroit.
“The league issued a statement saying it was reviewing rules and security procedures “so that fans can continue to attend our games unthreatened by events such as the ones that occurred last night.”"
Yep, rich white folks should feel free to scream slurs and throw beer at players. Apparently, million dollar contracts must also come with a dignity clause. You know, in signing the contract, players must trade their collective manhood and be at the mercy of the whims of those with courtside seats.
First, lemme get junior high on this…that was the most entertaining fight I’ve seen in years. I can’t remember seeing a REAL fight like that ever. Not in high school. Not in college. Not at Run ‘N Shoot on Stewart Ave. in Atlanta. Never. The sliding haymaker Jermaine O’Neal caught that fan on the court with might have been the hardest NBA punch since Kermit Washington shattered Rudy T’s face.
The moment I knew bad things were going to happen was when Stephen Jackson was involved. I met Stevie Wonder about ten years ago in Port Arthur, Texas when we were both in high school. He was one of the best players in the state, and my school played as his school’s tournament (and before you misunderstand, I was a waterboy at that point. Damn these knees). I talked to him for five minutes, an it was clear right then and there…he was ready for the ruckus whenever it went down.
So when the ruckus jumped off in Detroit, I knew it was bad news. Add Artest to that, and we’ve got a full-scale brouhaha.
Wanna know how crazy Ron Artest is? Who else could leave a potential fight with Ben Wallace and just lie down and take a nap? His face only scrunched barely during everything, and he never looked out of control. When something crazy is going on and a cat treats it as normal, that cat is crazier than the situation. In this case, that nut bag was Ron Artest.
But I don’t think he was really at fault here. Charles Barkley once said that the price of a ticket does not give someone the right to speak to him however they saw fit, and he was right. For some reason, folks don’t seem to understand that underneath everything, below the jerseys and the sneakers, those are grown men on the court. And as a grown man, you have an obligation to yourself to demand respect from all with whom you deal. If ass whoopins are what you have to dispense to make that clear, then that’s just what you have to do.
Let’s think about this. Most of us are wired with certain boundaries that we will not allow to be crossed. What’s interesting about this case is that two of my three were crossed.
Rules for dealing with Bomani
1. If you throw something at me, I’m whoopin’ your ass.
2. If a non-Negro (and some Negroes) calls me a nigger or any variant, I’m whoopin’ his ass.
3. If you kick me, I might try to kill you.
Think I’m a hoodlum for those? Well, I was just raised that way. Deal with it.
Fans threw things and spit racial slurs at the Pacers. Were that me, it’s time to fight. Matter of fact, I’m mollywoppin’ someone for wasting beer. Can’t be wasting good alcohol, shawty. I might have thought twice now that I actually have something to lose, but I wouldn’t think long. So, should you happen to see me on the street and feel compelled to throw something, you better be ready to throw. I will not be treated certainways, and the only way I can enforce that, unfortunately, is with violence.
On the real, in this day and age, be glad all I’m doing is fighting. With my slight build, you may have a chance. Most cats skinny as me ain’t throwin’ hands…they’re squeezing.
When you take everything away from someone, all that’s left is dignity, and I really do think that people are obligated to maintain that dignity. No one else is to do that. Now, once someone ascends to a certain level of success, it becomes necessary to allow lawyers to handle some of that enforcement.
But in a pinch, reflex will take over, and the reflexes of most dictate that someone must pay for doing things like that. Was it smart? Depends on how you look at it. Artest will be suspended for a long time, so it’s bad on that end. But, my initial thought was that this would be good for players everywhere. That these fans got what they had coming would make it clear to spectators that they are not allowed to do whatever they want to players. I thought htese ass whoopins would make it clear that there are consequences for blatantly disrespecting people.
Then the league came with that statement. The league is dedicated to making sure that fat cats are allowed to do whatever they want. They are allowed to do things they wouldn’t dream of doing on the street. They are allowed to trample the boundaries that constrain regular people and regulate respectful behavior.
I’ve tried all day to cull some sympathy for the fans in this one, and I only feel bad for the guy that took someone else’s beatdown. But that’s even a struggle for me…were his fingers broken or something? Why wasn’t he pointing at the real culprit? Me and Bobo (no relation) had a discussion about this…
Bobo – Why ain’t he run?
Baba – Because running wouldn’t have really helped. Would have made him look guilty. He shoulda pointed at the cat that did it.
Bobo – Who says he couldn’t do both?
Either way, Pointing should have taken place. Instead, he lived a nightmare. That would be the nightmare of having a huge, crazy man coming to beat you down when you ain’t done nothin’. Sucked to be him, but he’ll probably win a fat lawsuit.
Who’s at fault? Are the Pacers? Well, yes, but I can’t say I blame those cats for what they did. And once the fan hit the floor, he had to be erased. No telling what he had on his mind. If a fan hits the court, he has to be knocked asleep. That’s the only safe thing to do. Folks is crazy these days. If someone can get cut up at the Vibe Awards, it’s nothing for someone to get lit up at a basketball game. That’s all about self-preservation.
So keep the schpiel about how Artest should be put out of the league (more than one journalist has said that). Save the jazz about how there’s never a reason to go in the stands (there are reasons to do it, believe you me). Hold on to that jive about how professionals should be above the fray (they’re ballplayers, not police officers).
Just think of what you would do in all the situations listed. If you wouldn’t defend your dignity, I don’t think I want to be your friend (except for you, Brat).
There’s likely more on this to come…likely on an outlet that pays, not this humble site here. But I wanna see some comments on this…maybe I’m just a fool.