Pop Culture, Race & Politics

Circling The Wagons With Marcus Smart

dm_140209_Jeff_Goodman_On_Marcus_Smart

Last summer, I got pulled into a conversation about President Obama, crime, and George Zimmerman that I totally did not want to have. Well, let me rephrase that. I did not want to have that conversation at that time. I was at a bar with some friends, and I was in “get a couple drinks, and talk shit about Yeezus and YouTube strippers” mode, not “get a couple drinks, and discuss racially sensitive issues with this conservative White guy I’m cool with” mode. But, it happened, and I wrote about it. 

During this conversation, he matter-of-factly said that “Black people never criticize Obama”, and he cited a few polls and anecdotes as proof. When done making his point, I corrected him. Take a trip to any Black gathering, whether it’s a popular barbershop or a NSBE happy hour, and you’ll hear all types of things said about the president…and his wife. (The kids remain off-limits.) Most opinions shared will be positive, but even the lauds are often wrapped in snark. It’s not that we don’t criticize or even curse him. We just don’t do it in front of White people like you.

I mean, yes. If you’re criticizing President Obama’s stance and/or activity on an issue that has nothing to do with his Blackness (gay marriage, perhaps), then yeah. We shouldn’t have much problem agreeing. But if you’re criticizing his competency or attitude or intelligence — basically, anything where your opinion may have some race-related influence — then no. Even if we actually agree with what you’re saying, we’re not agreeing with you.

Anyway, before writing this, I watched the footage of Marcus Smart pushing Jeff Orr, again. I actually saw it live while at a bar Saturday night. Between then and now I’ve probably seen it a couple dozen times.

My feelings about it have remained the same. Regardless of what Orr said, Smart was in the wrong. This doesn’t absolve Orr of any wrong. Shit, it doesn’t even make him less wrong than Smart. But, while what Smart did was understandable — anyone who’s ever played ball in front of that many antagonistic people has had that urge before — you can’t retaliate like that. There are situations when a physical confrontation is necessary. Just not then. (And no, it doesn’t matter what he actually said to him.)

So yeah, Marcus Smart was in the wrong. As was Richard Sherman when he offered that fake-as-an-eight-dollar-bill-ass handshake to Michael Crabtree, then talked shit about him on national TV. Oh, and Kanye is a f*cking asshole, Obama has been disappointing, Drunk in Love is the only track off Beyonce worth a damn, and OJ did it.

All topics I have no problem discussing with other Black people. Or people I trust enough to get it. But once you leave the nest and start hearing criticisms caked in coded language (i.e.: “he’s a thug”, “her music isn’t really art”, “he’s acting like a child”, etc), you circle the wagons. And sometimes you circle even when you know you’re defending something or someone you don’t actually agree with.

If I bring up the Marcus Smart incident with Panama or my dad — or even one of my White teammates from college — I’ll be honest. Because I know the conversation will not occur in a context-less vacuum. It’ll be nuanced, raw, and real. If random White bar guy wants to talk about it, and he includes “…just like those NBA guys” or “he acted like an animal“, he’s not getting completely honest me. My feelings about and connection to the macro issue — his feelings about Black athletes and Black people — will overshadow my feelings about the micro.

Later this evening, I’m going to attend the third session of the pre-marriage counseling class we’re taking. As I mentioned before, nothing I’ve heard so far has been new or surprising. But there’s been one theme repeated ad nauseam. Probably to drive home exactly how important it is to a healthy marriage.

(Paraphrasing) “You and your partner need to be a united front. Regardless of the disagreements you might personally have with each other, when facing the rest of the world, you need to have each other’s back.”

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

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Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a contributing editor for EBONY.com. He resides in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes.

  • http://brown-c6h12o6.tumblr.com/ AfroPetite

    I don’t know many black folks who are passive about white people hurling the word ninja around. That crusty man is lucky he didn’t have to catch any hands as far as I’m concerned. Not everyone is going to stand by passively and be insulted. It’s very easy to tell people to walk away from a situation like that but in the heat of that moment, adrenaline on 100, down by a few points at the end of a tight game, I can’t really be mad at him for the shove.

    White people truly think they are untouchable smh. They’ll run into the wrong person one day without any one around to mediate. It’s amazing minorities in this country haven’t gone all Crispus Attucks on white people.

    • iamnotakata

      I totally agree!!! I feel the young man is justified and that pregnant fool Orr should have kept his mouth closed!! I would have probably laid his pregnant as* out…

      • http://brown-c6h12o6.tumblr.com/ AfroPetite

        Like I said, he could’ve got popped but Marcus Smart was kind enough to shove his pasty fat behind instead. It’s so funny that White people in this country and around the world, will chastise minorities for reacting aggressively towards other white people who go out of their way to be disrespectful. It’ll always be a Catch-22. We have to always “remain in our place” and be “good little colored folks” lest we anger white people and have them think less of us than they already do.

        I’m no dummy. I play my position when I’m in the presence of white people. It behooves me to stay alive and out of jail.

        • NipseysKlub

          Gotta get on Smokey in Fridays on them “i be quiet, but when they leave, I be talking again”

        • The Champ

          “We have to always “remain in our place” and be “good little colored folks” lest we anger white people and have them think less of us than they already do.”

          in this case, it’s not about “angering white people” and more about “not letting white people get the best of you.” i don’t care what “white people” will think of smart now. my concern is that a young brother with a multi-millionaire future has to be smarter (pun intended)

    • Sigma_Since 93

      The great philosopher Kenny Rodgers once said:

      “You got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em,
      Know when to walk away and know when to run.”

      Mr. Smart should have walked away; vengeance could have been his when TTU comes to his backyard in two weeks. Now, he’s under under under the microscope given that the TTU game will be his first game back from suspension. He can score 86 but the scrutiny will be so tight be better not even think bad thoughts.

  • iamnotakata

    “If random White bar guy wants to talk about it, and he prefaces his statement by saying “…just like those NBA guys” or “he acted like an animal“, he’s not getting completely honest me.”

    This is legit how I feel about pretty much any conversation I am having with a white person or other….I really just don’t trust them and are always suspicious of their intentions and of what their true feelings are..

    It doesn’t help when they seem to consistently prove to me what I am thinking is true…Long story short, one of my classes I was group with 2 asians and a white, we are to create a scenario pertaining to health disparities, when we last met we had decided on childhood obesity. My group met up without me this past Tuesday because I had a Dr. appointment….the topic for our presentation has now been changed to what they called “a more interesting topic” A single Black mother on government assistance who has a child with ADHD compared to a white upper middle class family with a PPO….I can’t wait to meet with them to read them for filth…..

    Any who… I don’t trust those folks…

    • nillalatte

      You should mention that the higher number of welfare recipients are… wait for it… white! So, why choose a black mother? And, those white folks on government assistance live in mostly RED states. That should make the assignment a bit more interesting or least watching them squirm. You’re welcome.

      • http://www.twitter.com/IluminatiNYC Todd

        The thing is Red America and Blue America don’t really deal with each other, for a whole host of reasons. Playing Devil’s Advocate, White people in the cities don’t really f*ck with Red America, and a lot of their so-called concern with “disadvantaged minorities” is less about us than a way to mess with them. But that’s another story.

        In addition, there’s the real issue that mental health services in rural America (where a disproportionate number of White welfare recipients live) is materially different from what people get in the cities and suburbs. Someone living in the sticks is just going to have a different road to hoe.

    • SuperStrings

      Your topic will yield a more concise result. Their topic is actually boring. Take a racially, socioeconomically disadvantaged single parent household and compare it to racially, socioeconomically privileged two-parent household. Everyone knows what those results will look like. Nothing to be learned there. Also, what they’re proposing doesn’t allow them to easily isolate causality.

    • 321mena123

      Childhood obesity is by far more interesting than ADHD. They do need to be read for using the stereotype. Does race even need to be involved? I think socioeconomic status is much better.

      • Epsilonicus

        I also think the data for causality in childhood obesity is stronger as SS brought up below.

        • 321mena123

          Yes. Sounds like the group is taking the easier route instead of doing a much better and sound project.

      • Val

        Or if they really want to look at this from a racial perspective then look at two families of the same economic status with one being Black and one White. That will shed light on structural issues that may prevent people of color from receiving the same invasive health intervention as Whites.

        • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

          heeeey, Val! *winks at Val’s avi* *remembers she’s a LA-dy* *winks harder*

          • Val

            Hiya, Dara!

            *waves*

        • SuperStrings

          This is exactly what I was alluding to in the last sentence of my response. How are you?

          • Val

            *great minds*

            I’m well, SS. You?

            • SuperStrings

              No complaints here. Had a great weekend, now back to these models.

          • Agatha Guilluame

            Break it up. Break it up. Enough flirting and innuendo and inside jokes. *squints eyes and pulls the hooker off SS* Leave enough room between the two of you for the holy ghost, jeez.

            • SuperStrings

              Watchu talkin bout AG? Gimme a hug.

              • Agatha Guilluame

                Don’t you try to distract me…what is Dara winking so hard about…

                • SuperStrings

                  Dara is winking at Val. But we’re not talking about Dara, we’re talking about you and this hug.

                  • Agatha Guilluame

                    Uh huh *crosses arms*.

        • 321mena123

          Yes, there are so many ways to approach this.

  • NipseysKlub

    And while OK State is allowed to do as they see fit with Smart, I hope the NCAA steps in and punishes Orr for abusing their student-athelete. As quick as they remind us that they are student-athletes and don’t deserve to be paid, they have the same responsibility to protect their student athletes from harm from outside, both physical and emotional abuse. If not, pay them like pros and allow the fans to feel justified in their hate b/c the athletes gets paid. Orr BS apology is a joke trying to claim he did no wrong. Looking at the video, you can tell Smart was triggered by something. Unfortunately, it becomes a who said situation where no one can prove the truth. I hope Smart is allowed to say exactly what happened. Also, Travis Ford will be on my shyt list if he doesn’t come out and say what his player said to him.

    • Had to Chime In

      By the “NCAA” I hope you mean Texas Tech. How is that the NCAA’s (the governing body) responsibility? I feel like there are other people in the line of responsibility regarding protecting students while competing…. game-day security & staff, game official’s, Mr. Smart’s teammates-coaches-administrators, the fellow TTU fan base, even campus security or local police…

      I hate this “blame the NCAA” bandwagon that casual fans are on lately…

      • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com/ Tristan

        Its not a bandwagon they’ve just been wildly inconsistent and people are fed up, but I agree this is on TTU fans like that aren’t about to help recruiting, even if it IS Texas.

      • Sigma_Since 93

        Every school has a Sportsmanship policy the students sign up to and the arena’s usually have a sportsmanship code of what is and what is not acceptable in the arena.

      • Val

        Those players are already being taken advantage of by being forced to play for free. So, the least the NCAA can do is make sure they aren’t abused while earning millions for their schools.

        • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

          but it ain’t freeeeeeeee…

          • Val

            You mean the one year scholarships they hold over their heads? Those things are a joke. And lets not even talk about the hundreds of players who get cut every year and go home with absolutely nothing to show and many times injuries that will last a lifetime.

            • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

              Call it cynicism, but have had to go through college without the benefit of a meal plan and free shoes, free clothes, included lodging, tuition, and tutors, I’m disinclined to pooh-pooh any sort of scholarship that beneficial. From that standpoint, they’re in a greater position than most of the student body that has to take out loans to subsidize all the above.

              • Epsilonicus

                I sort of see your point. However the vast majority of students (even in football and basketball) are not receiving support equal to the full cost of their education. However, they still need to commit the same hours as students who do. That means many of them are not able to work part-time in order to make up the difference. Plus scholarship money does not cover their living expenses. This means many of them are on public assistance because they are short on cash.

                • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                  And honestly, what I think is that they should divorce the athletics from schools themselves, pay athletes a salary compensatory to a minor league player, and draft players to major league that way. But saying that athletes play for ‘free’ really is a slap in the face to the rest of the student body. Paid education IS worth something.

                  • Epsilonicus

                    They do play for free technically. They d on’t earn a salary commensurate to the value they bring to their school. to reference a book title, your degrees do not keep you warm at night.

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      Sir, I taught classes at FSU for two years. *I* didn’t earn a salary commensurate to the value I brought to my school. Shoot, FULLY DEGREED ADJUNCTS don’t earn a salary commensurate to value.

                    • Val

                      Adjuncts get done wrong. And most never get tenure.

                    • 321mena123

                      Especially not when 85 year old English professor refuses to retire or die.

                      Sorry, that sounded really cold.

                    • Val

                      Those professors aren’t the problem though. Universities just don’t want to spend the money in salary and benefits. So they pretend that instructors are on the road to tenure when they know they will never be offered it. And since it happens at so many schools instructors don’t have many options other than to just leave education.

                    • 321mena123

                      Higher education is a business controlled by who can pay to get in and the donors of the school. It’s the middle class and poor students who suffer. Our educational system is creating a smaller middle class and it seems like congress doesn’t even care.

                    • Val

                      “Our educational system is creating a smaller middle class and it seems like congress doesn’t even care.”

                      I could not agree more. And, parts of Congress care. But, you have Republicans blocking any efforts to bring the cost down because, as usual, they represent the folks earning big money from higher education.

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      While you joke, one of my English professors was about that age and read his lectures like Gollum. Hilarious.

                    • 321mena123

                      See…

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      Very few people in the higher ed system get done right. And even professors, if they are in certain fields, certain genders, and of color, get done wrong. So while I was focusing on athletes, their treatment is emblematic of a horribly skewed system. I wonder why football coaches get millions and the rest of the school has to shut down programs.

                    • Val

                      Boosters love football.

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      and it makes for bloated athletics and atrophied academics.

                    • 321mena123

                      The problem i had when i was in school were the athletes who weren’t going anywhere and still did nothing. They were wasting away a “free” education.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      I get it. But they don’t earn a salary, they are working for free. I value education too but they are essentially working for free.

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      le sigh. Alright, we can argue that point. But specifically, they are not getting NOTHING in return. That’s all…

                    • Epsilonicus

                      I think it is easy for us to say “well, you are getting a paid education”. Many of those kids have lifetime injuries, Many of them don’t finish school. To be real, you could make a cogent argument that it is in their short-term benefit that they need the money more than the degree.

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      Many normal students don’t finish school either; I’m not sure of the insistence of that point. I disagree that they need the money more than the degree. My husband’s friend was a college athlete who lost his scholarship due to academic issues. He’s been at a dead-end for years now, stuck because he dropped out without finishing his degree. Degrees may not keep you warm at night and they may not guarantee anything, but minimum wage ain’t hot right now either.

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      do high school students get this same consideration?

                    • http://brown-c6h12o6.tumblr.com/ AfroPetite

                      This is a good question. I don’t come from an area where there are many championship teams but I heard certain schools in Texas are very ummm “accommodating” for their high school football players.

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      I’m not trying to confuse the issue at all, especially since HS funding is very different from colleges. But it’s an honest question about how compensation is looked at for HS athletics. @epsilonicus:disqus

                  • The Champ

                    they surround the students with money. but none is actually given to them. i guess it depends on how you define “free.”

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      I agree that the college athletic system isn’t designed to make the students wealthy and given the sheer volume of money it generates, that’s problematic. I’m not arguing that. I’m just not disregarding the fact that if there were no “school”, there would be no athletics. The system is hell-bent on maintaining the facade that academics is of any import. I guess it irritates me to realize that something of primary importance to me (education) is used as a cover for minor league sports, and then deemed to be insignificant when tallying compensation.

                • Val

                  Most aren’t allowed to work, Eps.

                  • Epsilonicus

                    Sometimes in D2 & D3 some can. That is why I qualified it. I was not sure of the exact proportions.

                • Sigma_Since 93

                  The off campus food stamp hustle / struggle is real.

              • Val

                Cynicism? Hater! Lol. Just kidding. Seriously, let’s start with the fact that the NCAA does not allow players to work while on athletic scholarships. If a player’s parents aren’t able to send them spending money that means they are expected to go through four years of college without a single dollar in their pockets? That’s why every year there are always two or three stories in the news about players at major programs getting busted for stealing or robbing someone.

                Regarding meal plans; how many folks do you know who went four years and only ate in the caf? I don’t know anyone who did but that’s what the NCAA expects players to do.

                What about the large numbers of players who don’t graduate? They are shepherded through school taking skate classes and after their eligibility is up they realize they don’t even have a degree.

                Also, if a player suffers a career ending injury the school will only pick up the medical tab for a year, if the player is lucky. Then they can be on the hook for thousands over the course of their lifetime. Not to mention lost productivity.

                And, finally, the coaches at major schools earn hundreds of thousands of dollars and many times millions. The ADs earn hundreds of thousands. Major sports programs bring in as much as 50 to 80 million a year. But players are expected to not receive a single dollar?

                So, give me a student loan, as much as I hate paying mine back, over a scholarship that’s way more than it’s cracked up to be.

                • 321mena123

                  Coaches at major schools won’t even look at anything under a million. The kids are getting a major shaft. I’m with you on this one.

                  • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                    I’m not saying they’re not getting any kind of shaft. I’m saying that they’re not playing for free. There’s a difference.

                    • 321mena123

                      Ok. You are correct. They are indentured servants though.

                • 321mena123

                  Oh, and don’t forget if they win a title or bowl game how much the coaches will make from that.

                  • Val

                    Yeah, those bonuses and incentives for coaches are pretty elaborate at major programs.

                    • b sweet

                      Modern day slaves.

                • The Champ

                  “Seriously, let’s start with the fact that the NCAA does not allow players to work while on athletic scholarships. If a player’s parents aren’t able to send them spending money that means they are expected to go through four years of college without a single dollar in their pockets? That’s why every year there are always two or three stories in the news about players at major programs getting busted for stealing or robbing someone.

                  Regarding meal plans; how many folks do you know who went four years and only ate in the caf? I don’t know anyone who did but that’s what the NCAA expects players to do.

                  What about the large numbers of players who don’t graduate? They are shepherded through school taking skate classes and after their eligibility is up they realize they don’t even have a degree.

                  Also, if a player suffers a career ending injury the school will only pick up the medical tab for a year, if the player is lucky. Then they can be on the hook for thousands over the course of their lifetime. Not to mention lost productivity.

                  And, finally, the coaches at major schools earn hundreds of thousands of dollars and many times millions. The ADs earn hundreds of thousands. Major sports programs bring in as much as 50 to 80 million a year. But players are expected to not receive a single dollar?”

                  Way to shut it the f*ck down. Damn.

                  (Couple things I’d add. Scholarships aren’t for four years. They’re one year renewable. A coach can release a student-athlete from it at their whim any time during their career. Most coaches wouldn’t do that. But some do. Also, while coaches can break contracts and go to whichever school they please, an unhappy student can’t just leave without having to sit out a year. Oh, and the coach doesn’t have to release him from the scholarship. And, if the coach does release him, he can say “you can leave, but you can’t go to duke, pitt, wvu, or texas.”)

                  • Val

                    I mentioned the one year scholarship scam in my first comment on this thread. I, however, didn’t know they had none compete clauses in scholarship contracts. That’s gangster.

                • Sigma_Since 93

                  You “can” get a job nowadays but the reality is that as a student athlete it’s not worth an employers time to hire you since a) the pockets of time that you’re able to work are so small the retrurn on investment isn’t there b) the internal peer pressure the schools place on you: that time you’re working is time you could be using to get better or while you’re working, Sa-Teek is busting his but to take your spot. c) the un-official (official) conditioning sessions; you only get out of these if you’re six feet under or are a two sport athlete.

                • Tentpole

                  Val, depending on the school, some Athletes are getting 100k education for free. There are many perks that happen when you are an athlete you just don’t always see it. The price for this is you have to be committed to your education and your sport. You don’t get to have a normal college experience if you want to survive on scholarship because you have to perform to stay on scholarship. Depending how you perform if you have a major injury, many places will let you finish your education on their dime provided you maintain academic progress. The number of athletes who have problems all fell into the same category. They failed to understand that you aren’t there to have a good time. You are there to produce and get an education and in the process hope you can make it to the PRO’s.

                  • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                    Thank you. Ask me if I could get into Stanford with a 2.5 GPA.

                    • http://brown-c6h12o6.tumblr.com/ AfroPetite

                      *takes large gulp of tea*

                    • Val

                      *sneaks sip of AP’s tea*

                    • Val

                      If you could help Stanford earn 80 million dollars a year you could. :-)

                    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

                      psssssssssshhhhhhhhhhhhht! lol.

                    • afronica

                      *takes sip of Val’s reali-tea*

                    • http://brown-c6h12o6.tumblr.com/ AfroPetite

                      I’ve been going about this higher education thing all wrong

                    • Val

                      Me too.

                  • Val

                    Here’s the thing, Tent. If you are a kid with a whole lot of support or an unusual amount of maturity then yes, that kind of student can walk into a scholarship with his eyes wide open and take full advantage. But, how often is that the case.?

                    Most players, especially ones whose families don’t have the experience with education to understand how to navigate the system, end up at the mercy of the program. Often the result is a player walking away with nothing.

                    • Tentpole

                      You are so right Val. Here is another secret. The schools provide all the support you need to survive as an athlete on a full ride, but to do so means you have to give up the party life at full throttle and not exploit your peer support. The thing is that the problem starts in high school when high value athletes are taught they don’t do anything but play. When they get that full ride, they don’t realize that now they are there with other superstars all competing for the same spot and many are used to that level of competition and that’s where the problem starts.

                • afronica

                  I went to a school where the men’s basketball team usedta be a contender. The basketball program is still a large part of campus life. I has a couple of classes with members of the basketball team. They could never join study groups for those classes because of their schedules. It was understood that bball guys would study together. I didn’t get it and asked one of the guys what was up.

                  He showed me his schedule. Every minute was planned, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Wake up times, runs, conditioning (cardio), conditioning (weights), meal times, practice sessions (sometimes as many as three a day), play book time, lights out, classes, study time, tutor time, travel to games, travel back to campus, game times, media coaching – it went on forever. The only time we saw those guys were the occasional Friday or Saturday night party, provided they weren’t playing or travelling to play.

                  My school has one of the higher graduation rates for sports scholarship recipients, and I’m sure that ridiculous schedule has a lot to do with that. You aren’t allowed to get off track. Other schools have a more relaxed approach to how their athletes spend their time. But in any program, a lot of your day is going to be eaten up with practices, conditioning, classes, homework and games. The guys at my school were very much the indentured servants someone else mentioned. None of those guys were pre-med or in the more difficult schools within the university. They received degrees, but everyone knew that basketball was their real curriculum.

                  I completely agree that athletics needs to be divorced from higher ed and a minor league system created for those sports asap.

                  • Val

                    And, it’s not just during the academic year that they have those schedules. Even when school isn’t in session they have to adhere to a training schedule.

                    • afronica

                      They were always the first ones back from holiday breaks. It seemed like they got one week at home during Christmas.

                  • http://brown-c6h12o6.tumblr.com/ AfroPetite

                    I knew a football player who was a chemical engineering major. He’s in DC working for some government program. Granted, Howard is a small D-I school which isn’t competitive lol but his schedule was still tight and he got what he needed to get done, done.

                    • afronica

                      Good on him and glad to hear it. I’m betting he’s the exception. The more ambitious guys at my school had entrepreneurial plans after graduation if they didn’t go pro. They seemed to be steered away from the more difficult majors.

                      Our basketball program is comparable to Syracuse, Vannilanova, like that.

            • 321mena123

              I’m with Val on this one. ESPECIALLY seeing how much the SEC makes every year.

          • SuperStrings

            nothing in life is free. everything has a cost.

      • The Champ

        perhaps the NCAA should have a procedure in place as well, though. if they set a precedent, everyone else will likely follow

    • http://www.twitter.com/IluminatiNYC Todd

      My understanding is that Mr. Orr “voluntarily” gave up his season tickets for the rest of the season. Personally, I think Texas Tech and the Big 12 should just ban him from their arenas indefinitely. Apparently, this isn’t the first time he’s tried to get into it with the players on the court, and there comes a point where the safety of everyone in the arena becomes an issue.

      • Sigma_Since 93

        It’s been said that coaches have told their players to steer clear of Mr. Orr.

        • http://www.twitter.com/IluminatiNYC Todd

          If it’s to that point, why is he allowed in the arena though? I understand freedom of speech, but there is a line between that and inciting riots. I wonder how deep his paper is. That’s the only reason a school would want someone like that around.

          • Sigma_Since 93

            Alumni Money.

            You played ball. You knew the section where the hecklers were. Your coach told you to let the chants roll off your back the days leading up to the game. Hearing what coach told you and doing what coach told you are two entirely different things.

            • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

              You stole the words out of my mouth. It is always about money. You placate the cash cow so you can milk it again later.

    • The Champ

      “And while OK State is allowed to do as they see fit with Smart, I hope the NCAA steps in and punishes Orr for abusing their student-athelete”

      from what i understand, orr was suspended

  • AmosBanks

    One of the videos shows Smart pointing at Orr and saying, “He called me a n-word”. I have pretty good sports lipreading skills.

    • The Champ

      yeah, that’s what smart said he said

  • Geneva Girl

    “You and your partner need to be a united front. Regardless of the
    disagreements you might personally have with each other, when facing the
    rest of the world, you need to have each other’s back.” Especially when you have kids. Don’t let them divide and conquer you.

    • The Champ

      Especially when you have kids. Don’t let them divide and conquer you.

      the couple leading the course actually mentioned that specifically

  • nillalatte

    On the marriage counseling, that is some excellent advice. I can’t tell you how many times I felt like I was struggling alone in my marriage. I was on one path to creating a future and the ex was on a totally different path (to destruction). Hence, another reason he is an ex.

    I just wanna know why anyone thinks they have the right to offend others at will? I’ll give you an example. A family member of mine sent me an email that said (paraphrasing here) ‘a daughter told her father to give all her belongings away and disown her.” The friend he was telling said, “She said that?” The dad said, “Not exactly. She introduced her new boyfriend to me, Muhammad, and they were going to go work on Hillary Clinton’s campaign.”

    I could not believe they sent this crap to me! ME of all people! The implication here is obvious; they are disowning their daughter because her boyfriend is most likely Arab and/or Muslim! When I wrote them back and expressed my dissatisfaction with their spreading racist propaganda their response was… “Lighten up. It was a joke.” My reply back: “It was a RACIST joke. Please do not send me this crap and I hope you didn’t send a copy to my kids, who are, if you didn’t know, half Arab and their dad is Muslim!” Yet, I know they know.

    I can understand Marcus Smart’s reaction to being insulted especially by a white man. Do I condone his violent reaction? No. Not ever.

    • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com/ Tristan

      Its simple, know your audience. I don’t even know you but know well enough to say a joke of the sort on here would likely offend how a family member didn’t know better is beyond dumb

    • The Champ

      “I was on one path to creating a future and the ex was on a totally different path (to destruction). Hence, another reason he is an ex.

      isn’t path to destruction a tempations’ song?

      (nevermind. just googled it. it’s ball of confusion. I’m getting a lot of things wrong this morning)

  • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com/ Tristan

    “Look, if I shoot you, I’m brainless, but if you shoot me, then you’re famous” – S. Corey Carter

    Marcus Smart was in the wrong, had he not hit Jeff Orr with the kamehameha I nor anyone else would know of this man. That’s nothing to do with race, its merely status, even at 19, he’s above that sh t.

    • http://trulytafakari.com/ dtafakari

      “Look, if I shoot you, I’m brainless, but if you shoot me, then you’re famous” – S. Corey Carter

      How prescient and apt is that statement for this week, given the UTTER douchery displayed by the DMX v GZ fight promoter? GZ is famous for the worst reason.

      • Epsilonicus

        I really need DMX to win this fight. DMX REALLY cannot afford to lose this fight.

        • 321mena123

          It’s been cancelled thank God.

        • SuperStrings

          I’m not too hopeful. I think DMX might get his a$$ whooped. He’s like 43 and crackhead.

        • Joel

          What folks are forgetting is that GZ is supposedly a “trained fighter” of some sort….Paradoxically, though, that same “training” couldn’t help him get a 17-year old kid off of him without using a gun. Even if this fight were to happen, I don’t think DMX would win.

        • SuperStrings

          I’m not hopeful. I think DMX might get his a$$ whooped. He’s like 43 and a crackhead.

          • Epsilonicus

            But maybe his crack head strength kicks in…

        • The Champ

          the fight is off, apparently.

          oops. nevermind. just read downthread.

      • http://TheNewEve.com/ Bunni

        Im not here for this fight at allll….and DMX?? Really? Yeah, lets send America’s Favorite Crackhead to fight this POS

        ….this fight makes no sense because GZ is NOT a fuckin celebrity …

        **sips tea and reclaims composure**

        • Rachmo

          That fight troubles my spirit

  • http://www.twitter.com/IluminatiNYC Todd

    I saw the footage of what happened, and I think that Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and the Big 12 got the punishment right. After all, Smart only went into the stands chasing after ball, not to go on the attack, and only shoved him after he obviously was told something. Still, you don’t want to encourage players to shove random fans, even if dude has a track record of being a jacka$$ to players. And that fan doesn’t need to be in any sort of college arena anywhere. I don’t care if it’s a Texas Tech chess team match. I get the feeling that with him around, that would look like a BBQ domino game REAL quick.

    Still, with the type of coded racism you’re mentioning Champ, it seems to take place among “ordinary” White people who have assimilated themselves into the cultural hegemony. Their parents and grandparents gave up being for “anything” in order to have access to the financial resources and cultural capital of the mainstream, so they have no sense of being who they are other than “it’s just supposed to be this way”. Say what you will about Southerners, ethnic Whites or even Mormons to a lesser extent, but they tend not to pull that passive-aggressive racism if only because they know who they are, and therefore know what they’re against. It’s interesting that the more mainstream someone is, the more they lean on the structures of racism to get by. Ironically, if they let go of it and stood for something, they’d get a more honest response, even if it is “F*ck you”.

    • The Champ

      “I think that Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and the Big 12 got the punishment right. ”

      I agree

  • Sigma_Since 93

    As athletes, I’m throwing myself in here but it’s been a minute, you love going into a hostile situation and letting your team’s play silence the crowd. However, there are times your team is going to have an off night and you’ve gotta swallow that bitter pill. Beats headphones can’t save you in these situations; you’ve just got to accept defeat as graciously as possible, get back to the lab and put in work so it doesn’t happen again.

    • The Champ

      it’s funny. while many “normal” people are saying Smart did no wrong, every former and current athlete I’ve seen quoted about it has said the exact same thing: what happened was understandable, but Smart was wrong

      • Sigma_Since 93

        It’s because we’re used to constant exposure to simulated adversity with the hopes of being prepared for actual adversity.

        You knew those trips to Loudinville, especially if Siena was playing at the ARC, were going to be tightly contested games. You coaches (in vain) prepped you by blasting loud music, having the assistants or the reserves mug you in practice to prepare you for what you were going to experience.

        Outside of sports, what other vehicle is there that preps you for the day to day realities you are likely to encounter?

  • SuperStrings

    Yeah, I’m on the fence on this one. Sometimes circling the wagons gets abused by the perpetrator, and we just end up enabling bad behavior. I’m not for that. Act like an a$$ or do some inexcusable dumb ish, then I’m not defending that. I also wouldn’t expect anyone to defend me if I were the one doing the dumb ish. Some ish needs to be criticized, sometimes by us more than anyone else.

    • http://www.twitter.com/IluminatiNYC Todd

      Yeah, there’s a fine line between circling the wagons and enabling dumb ish. The smart people know how to tow that line, the rest…well, let’s pray for them.

    • 321mena123

      “Some ish needs to be criticized, sometimes by us more than anyone else.” Say it again.

    • http://TheNewEve.com/ Bunni

      This is akin to our mothers fussing at us in the supermarket cuz “white ppl are watching” …its sad, but TOTALLY makes sense.

      • SuperStrings

        Yeah, I’m just saying there’s a balance. If my kids do wrong, I’m their first and most vocal critic…I’m on that a$$. On the flip side, they know they can unapologetically stand their ground when they’re right, and then I’m their first and most vocal defender.

        • http://TheNewEve.com/ Bunni

          I remember one time I got a lil smart mouthed with a white teacher of mine (her race does matter in this context, but long story short…), and my mama, while not letting me get away with it, refused to scold me during the parent conference…she wanted all of the details, and debated with the teacher until she admitted that she [may have] played a role in my reaction…..but soon as we got home, Mama Bunni was allllllllll up in my azz for being a jackass to an adult….guess its about timing and appearances….

          • dmcmillian72

            @bunni, this is my Mama…ALL.THE.WAY!

            • http://TheNewEve.com/ Bunni

              lol, my mom wasnt big on public discipline, but she would set fire to the rain once we got home lol

    • The Champ

      “Sometimes circling the wagons gets abused by the perpetrator, and we just end up enabling bad behavior”

      true.