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Cam's quip


Thursday, October 12, 2017

I don’t like Cam Newton. Never did; never will.

That confessed, I judge (my First Amendment right) there’s a vast overreaction by Jourdan Rodrigue to the churlish, “innocent,” “ignorant” words of the 28-year-old adolescent athlete, whom she should be “as sensitive about” as she seems to be to her own psyche.

Rodrigue implies, from her rejoinder, that she’s a “veteran” sports reporter. So I’d think she’d be tougher than that and simply take it in stride. But that wouldn’t have generated as much notoriety had she merely considered the source of the alleged “insult” (an immature, probably not too fluent in the nuances of the English language, athlete) then moved on.

“It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes.” To paraphrase a former notorious “sexist”: define “funny.” What’s “funny” to my septuagenarian ears is if, in my high school locker room, we heard a female voice or from the booth on Monday night football with Cosell, Meredith and Gifford were to emanate the dulcet tones of a female. Yes, it would have been “funny,” “strange” and “unusual,” in each situation, in that unique era, not “laughable” — as Rodrigue obviously interpreted it.

So let’s look at words as glibly as Humpty Dumpty did in “Through the Looking Glass” when commenting to Alice about the nature of words: they mean what we want them to mean. Emrys Westacott sums it up: “But if I alone decide what words mean, it becomes impossible to identify mistaken uses. This is Humpty’s situation if words simply mean whatever he wants them to mean.”

Thus: What did Cam mean; how did Rodrigue interpret?

At the risk of insulting athletes, reporters, females — anyone else with a gossamer epidermis: Wow! The times have changed! Sensitivities have intensified; immaturity has become pervasive.

Emotions are raw!

John R. Cleary