Sunday, October 12, 2008

Talk about painful...

You have to wonder if the Tampa Tribune is going for some sort of world's record in poor decision making. After the week they had, how else would you explain the puff piece Q & A with Buccaneers tight end Jerramy Stevens in Anwar Richardson's "Wide Right" column published on Sunday? Stevens, who has a history of arrests for assault with a deadly weapon, marijuana possession, sexual assault and drunk driving (if you want details, click here, but prepare for a long read...and to be thoroughly sickened) is in his first season with the Buccaneers.

Under the jaw-droppingly poor taste displayed in the headline, "Life Can Be Full Of Painful Lessons", we're treated to Stevens' thoughts on pain as it relates to pop music, pseudo-celebrities William Hung and Paris Hilton, body odor, bad breath and sexy actresses. It reaches a crescendo when he's asked "What is the most painful beating you received from your parents?" and answers "I can remember the worst beating I got. It wasn't painful because of the physical part, but it was painful because of the trauma of the situation. When I was a little, I set these trees on fire by my house and I called the fire department. I was putting it out, and right as I was getting it out, my dad pulled up and that trauma from the look in his eye lasted a lifetime for me." Richardson, who as a reporter who writes frequently about the Buccaneers, one would presume is at least somewhat familiar with what has happened in Stevens' lifetime between the tree incident and now, follows this up with "Did you get the belt or the hand?"
I find it very hard to believe that out of a roster of over 53 players, Anwar Richardson couldn't find someone better to talk to. Personally, I'd rather hear what solid citizens like Derrick Brooks and Warrick Dunn have to say three or four times before listening to a single word from somebody like Jerramy Stevens. Our legal system being what it is, Stevens has the right to walk the streets, sign an NFL contract and be paid to play professional football in our community...currently, although this could change by the time you read this if the past is any indicator of the future. As an American (albeit not a professional athlete) who presumably would benefit from similar treatment under that system (riiiiight), I support his right to do so. But that's it. He doesn't deserve cheers, he doesn't deserve success on the field and he doesn't deserve the spotlight afforded by what is still a major daily newspaper...currently, although that status is another thing that could change by the time you read this if the past is any indicator of the future.
Maybe they're just into pain.

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