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"Lou is not talking about mechanics when he goes out to the mound,"
~Chicago Cubs pitching coach Larry Rothschild

Saturday, November 19, 2005

What's the Scoop With This Writing?

I must confess that I am not a reader of Scoop Jackson. Mainly because he tends to write mostly about the NBA, a sport a pay close attention to only between the Super Bowl and Spring Training. But I have heard of the terrible articles he has written and decided to take a look myself. Here's what I've found:

I am a year away from being a college graduate. I have taken every English class required to get my degree. Therefore, I believe I have been schooled in grammer more than anybody who is not an English major. I have never heard of or seen somebody write basically an entire article with such a fondness for the one sentence paragraph. Scoop's latest piece on ESPN uses 39 of these one sentence paragraphs compared to just 16 paragraphs of 2 or more sentences. No paragraph was more than 3 sentences long and 5 consisted of only one word.

Scoop consistantly uses phrases such as:

You kill my dog, I'ma slay your cat.
He's the same brotha from last year
He grown now.

Maybe I'm nitpicking here, but when quotation marks are the only way I can tell the difference between Ron Artest's quotes and Scoop Jackson's writing, I think there's some type of problem.

The only other article I read by Scoop was the one in which he called out Jeff Kent for being insensitive towards African-Americans. Now I think Kent's comments could be percieved as slightly offensive towards blacks, but not nearly as offensive as Scoop's column attempting to give Kent some sensitivity training. Here's an excerpt from the column:

The first thing you gotta understand is that sometimes we be trippin'. Now I'm not saying that Milt was wrong, I'm just telling you that we black people tend to "bug out" or "snap" at times. No reason, no excuses. Our women do it more than the men. But somehow we give them reason, they say. But that's a whole 'nother story. Anyway, get used to the "snappin'" -- that's just us.

Look, cousin (not that we're related, that's just the way black folks talk to one another sometimes), I know you saw "White Men Can't Jump." Remember the scene where Woody was telling Wesley that "black people would rather look good" than get dirty on the court. Well, that's true. That's how we are.

Now don't get it twizzled; we hustle as hard as the next non-black ballplayer. But it looks different. A lot of times, because of the way we do things -- because we try to look smoove at all times...

That was copied directly from the ESPN website. I didn't do any editing or change the spelling of the word "smooth" to "smoove" myself, that was all Scoop. I know he's talking about his own so I guess he gets a free pass. But I still find it hard to imagine that ESPN would print such a broad and disgusting generalization about an entire race.

Normally, I like to stick to the sports stuff that really matters, but it irks me that the number one sports website employs writers such as Scoop Jackson. I saw him on Jim Rome's show the other day. Nevermind the absence of professionalism in his clothing attire (which makes Iverson's digs appear to be straight from GQ), where's the proffesionalism in his speaking and writing. That is what he's paid to do, right?

Hell, I'm 24 years old. I can handle Scoop saying dimes instead of assists. It doesn't even bother me that much when he makes up words like flavorlogic. It does bother me though that his editors don't even force him to write in proper English and give him a free pass to pull out the race card on every sports issue.

Aaron Gleeman asked on his blog a few weeks ago, "At what point does these writers claiming racism in every other article become racist in itself?" In my eyes that's a valid question.

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