Imagine you are with a group of friends, maybe a half dozen or so, all reasonably well-educated, open-minded folks who love to listen and debate. You are sitting around a kitchen table discussing the merits or lack thereof of some public figure. Someone says something in favor of the figureâ€™s career, with much supporting evidence, while someone else across the table comes back with a retort that is considerably less favorable, but is also supported by some serious facts.
Then, into the kitchen comes one of the host coupleâ€™s kids, an adorable little 4 year old who recognizes the well-known name being bandied about and discussed, and, desperate for attention, screams â€œHe is a poo-poo head!â€
Do you smack the child and tape their mouth shut? Of course not.
But do you all stop, listen, and pull up another chair to the table, giving the attention-seeking little child an equal place in the conversation?
This is, to me, what the reasonable, educated, patient fan is being asked to do when it comes to the truly mindless and attention-seeking negativity being bandied about regarding the Metsâ€™ offseason and hopes for 2010. While all opinions should be heard, the ridiculous ones should be called out and demolished by the true fan at every opportunity, as the admirable Boomer Esiason recently did on WFAN.
Another Met-related blog, not a place to visit if looking for insightful writing, or even correct spelling, proper use of punctuation, or articles fit for kids, outdid their often ridiculous selves recently with a classic example of the childish, whiny bellyaching that Metdom has been inundated with this winter.
Among the usual silliness filling their pages was an article stating that the Wilpons (well, actually the Wilponâ€™s) were now worse than the Dolans as owners. A more ridiculous, less reasonable, and frankly a more childish statement can hardly be imagined. The writer then gives a stirring list of ten great old-time NY NL players, and proudly misspells five of them. He finishes this remarkable piece by comparing Jeff Wilpon to M. Donald Grant.
Grant acquired no big-money players and was the moving force behind one of the darkest days in Met history, June 15, 1977, when Tom Seaver and Dave Kingman were traded for prospects to save money. Omar did not improve the starting rotation, as we are reminded about 9017 times a day, but he DID sign Jason Bay to yet another Wilpon-financed huge deal, following the deals given to KRod, Johan, Beltran, Pedro, and Wagner, and the big-money, early extensions offered to Wright and Reyes.
This article is perhaps the very best recent example of the absolute nonsense that masquerades as â€œjournalismâ€ and even reasonable opinion today. People should indeed be free to post nonsense like this all they want, but those of us with a healthy regard for reality should not be silent when forced to be exposed to this foolishness, which most definitely does not deserve a place at the table of the seriously reasonable fan.
Boomer Esiasonâ€™s fantastic exposure of Ken Rosenthalâ€™s â€œsourcedâ€ assertion about the Mets having no money was a truly wonderful example of the growing backlash against the clearly fabricated, anti-Met content which has been flooding the airwaves. NY Sports Dogâ€™s Dave Singerâ€™s wonderful Five Rules on How Not to Sound Pathetic in 2010 was also right on the money. Buster Olneyâ€™s characteristically doubtful story regarding the Torrealba situation should be the next target. The Mets had no money for Torrealba? Did the Wilpons find a few million in the couch cushions the next week to give to Pagan, Takahashi and Jacobs?
Along with Heymanâ€™s usual half-baked, often factually incorrect utterances and outright shilling for agents, and Klapischâ€™s attention-seeking piece advocating trading Johan for prospects, the â€œmajorâ€ media folks have joined the 8th raters like the aforementioned blog in making total fools of themselves in order to draw attention to their bylines this offseason.
Has anyone considered that the Mets BELIEVE that Pelf, Maine, and Ollie, all still young, might still become better options than Pineiro, Garland, Marquis, and their ilk? That they consciously decided NOT to overpay for older mediocre pitchers? Yes, in a clear public relations move, Omar and Jeff, desperate to appease the fans, said that they “intend to always build a team around pitching, speed and defense.” But, as NFL and NBA teams often do, they did ultimately “go after the best talent, no matter who that player is and where he is from” in signing Jason Bay.
This space is the last place on Earth where calls for censorship will ever be found. This writer perhaps does not express his distaste for negativity eloquently enough, and maybe Kingmanâ€™s Korner comes off as anti-free speech. Nothing could be further from the truth.
This writer just feels that while the internet is perhaps the greatest tool humans have yet invented for communication and self-expression, that it also unfortunately gives a tremendous boost to the spreading of absolute nonsense, which in an earlier age would not have seen the light of day for a good reason—not because it deserved to be censored, but just because it was absolute drivel.
The Wilpons are worse then the Dolans and Jeff is M. Donald story managed to make its way to TRDMB via someone posting a link to it, thus giving it even more exposure which it most definitely did not deserveâ€”other than as an object of laughter and scorn, and as the recipient of a D- if given a grade on the writing alone.
We all can agree that no season in the last half-decade has been ultimately satisfying. Even the near-great 2006 was deflated by the endings of 2007 and 2008, as what we thought was building never quite happened. 2009 was of course a disaster. Should 2010 result in no playoff spot, the team will surely see drastic change, from the front office to the bench. Even should this occur, it would not remotely validate the ridiculous ideas that Johan should have been traded or that the Wilpons are out of money.
But again, comparing this team to the Knicks and their ownership, or suggesting that the Wilpons have nothing to spend, is the work of our 4-year-old running into the kitchen.
The 4-year-old should be treated with concern and care, but he isnâ€™t given an equal place when the grownups are talking about something serious.
Kingmanâ€™s Korner would like to reiterate its unflinching support for free speech in all of its forms. It is not others expressing their opinions which is aggravating, it is ridiculous, unsupported, and factually wrong ideas going unchallenged and being given visibility which is most annoying.
And as a corollary to that, we remember what the young Peter Parker learned when he was grappling with his newfound powers upon becoming Spider Man, â€œWith great power comes great responsibility.â€
Hereâ€™s hoping that some of the internetâ€™s most egregiously negative 4-year-olds learn this as they approach childhood.