Disclaimer: This article is long and probably makes no sense. It is my (Ginger Russ) response to a recent post in which I referenced a post by the blog The Bad News Cubs and the (few) reactions that came from the two posts. This is blog is entirely my opinion and in no way reflects the opinions of the other authors of College of Idiots.
I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. ~Voltaire
Who knew people actually read our blog?
Through the use of the brilliant Google Reader, I try to keep up with the news and opinions of the intra-web's Cublogoverse. As I was going through my endless list of blogs from over 30 different sites (It's amazing that if I don't keep up, I can have a list 130 articles long in a matter of a couple days), I came upon a very opinionated, swear-filled, and slur-riddled blog title from Bad News Cubs. How could I resist, I love swearing.
After finally getting through all the ranting and raving, I decided to write a post about the blog and state that I partially agreed with Mike's point about some Cubs blogs talking shit. I thought nothing of it. It was the end of the day, I needed something to post about, and with the lack of news, this seemed reasonable. Little did I expect that people actually would read the post or even have an opinion about it.
But it seems some people actually do read our site, and picked up on my backing of the article from BNC. In particular it was referenced in Another Cubs Blog comments section in an article about the Cubs signing So Taguchi. This weekend, Bleacher Nation wrote an article about the BNC article and referenced my article as a disappointment for supporting Mike's article (can I say article in this paragraph again? Article, article, article.)
First of all, I still give kudos to Mike for expressing his opinion. What I like about blogs is that they are written by people expressing their opinions. None of us are professional sports writers. We are fans who sit in front of a computer all day and enjoy taking brief vacations from our cubicle-life to share with others something that we love, namely the Cubs. Being a part of the Cublogoverse is fun and it's always enjoyable to turn to my Google Reader and read what others have to say.
I assume that most people that read blogs do not take what they read as fact. Like I said, we are not beat reporters. Yes, some of the more established blogs actually do have inside sources and often report on rumors that are not yet broke through the Cubs organization. This is one of the aspects of reading 10-30 blogs a day that I enjoy, but mainly I read them because I am interested in the opinions, stories, and often hilarious satire that these blogs express.
The test of democracy is freedom of criticism. ~David Ben-Gurion
One thing that I have noticed in past year of joining the "blogger-nation" of Cub fans is that some sites seem to give harsh criticism to other blogs and writers, as well as people they think are not "true" Cub fans. In particular, these sites are usually established Cub blogs, rather than ones that have sprung up in the past couple years, like our site. I have also noticed that these "feuds" often spawn from spats in comment sections or shoutboxes and usually end with one blog author being banned from another blog and then getting pissed off and talking shit about that blog*.
*I would like to point out that COI has never been the point of attack, as we are a very small blog and all 5 of our readers tend to like us. Also, I rarely partake in commenting on other sites and have never talked shit about any blog directly (Cubs related anyways).
This being said, I would like to say that while I defend Mike for writing his article, I do not agree with his individual attack on Wrigleyville 23, and in particular do NOT agree with his use of persistent homophobic slurs within his piece.
I was amazed to read that Ace from Bleacher Nation actually reads our site, let alone enjoys it. Ace did not attack my post, but rather my lack of "not mentioning the disgusting bile that filled the BNC post."
At the end of the article, he writes, "It’s possible to get the message across - yes, even with the angry machismo shtick that makes it unique - without the homophobic slurs."
This I agree with.
Ace was actually very eloquent and to the point (unlike me, who just rambles on and on) with disagreeing with BNC and myself for supporting the article. The comments on his article were interesting and less rational though.
This brings to mind the old saying you know the difference between porn and art when you see it, and I happen to like both. I read his blog yesterday, and I understand he is going for the edgy confrontational thing, but to me it came off as lets put on our Doc Martins and go stomp some gays.
Being the devil's advocate, I have to disagree with savant on a couple points:
1) If you compare blogs to porn and art, then aren't all blogs really closer related to porn that art? I would say the sports writers are the artists. They get paid to do their job. They are unbiased (usually) and articulate. Blogs on the other hand are the voyeuristic cousin of sports writing. We get off by viewing into other people's minds and their thoughts, and then write about it. I would say most blogs like WV23, ACB, and BN are like your average soft-core and sometimes mainstream porn. You get a glimpse, but not the ramming home of two huge cocks into a midget's asshole. BNC is like the bukkake porn of blogs. It's in your face and you probably don't like looking at it. But I still defend the right for it to be expressed. In turn I also defend the right to dislike it and write about that.
2) While Mike's article did go overboard (no, really?) with the use of homophobic slander, I really don't think he was actually attacking gay people. Yes, it is wrong to use a group of people: race, creed or sexual preference to attack people. I don't agree with it at all, and there are other ways to attack someone, but to go out and say that Mike was attacking gay people directly is incorrect. He was attacking WV23, and unfortunately used a narrow-minded way of going about it.
So again, I disagree with Mike's way of expressing his opinion, but still defend his right to do so.
I won't go into the attacking of Mike directly by ACB and his response, you can read them for yourself. I will say that it seems like the pointless bickering and name calling of kids. Which is what Mike's original article was basically about. I'm sure he knew he would get a rise out of people, and that is why he posted it, and it did.
So yes, maybe I was wrong for expressing my support and enjoyment in the Bad News Cubs. I agree with Ace of Bleacher Nation that we should take responsibility to censor ourselves and not give overly homophobic tones to our articles. But maybe I was right too. Not everything you read you are going to agree with. The land of the internet is one of the few places left where you can freely express your opinion without censorship. I think, or hope, Ace, as well Mike, agrees with me on that.
Also, I would like to point out that after a little over a year of being a member of the Cublogoverse, I have received nothing but well wishes and unearned praise from all the blogs that read us and sometimes even enjoy us. I would like to thank everyone who has commented on our articles, linked to them, and especially to those who include a link to our site on your own blog. Thank you (in no way is this meant to kiss anyone's ass...okay, maybe a little bit).
Now back to your regularly scheduled crappy rants about Cub players, management, fast food establishments, the Cards, the White Sux, the Brewers, and the Packers, written by a graphic designer with no journalism training that only gets his facts correct half of the time.
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