Thursday, March 17, 2011

Mouth Meet Foot: WNBA/Former Rutgers Player Cappie Pondexter Disses Japan

You might recall the Don Imus controversy some years back where your boy Imus lost his natural mind and said that the Rutgers women's basketball squad were some "nappy headed ho's."  There was a national outcry.  Imus lost his job for a few weeks.  Sharpton marched.  The Rutgers coach co-signed.  And, not to be left out, Cappie Pondexter had this to say:

"I am confident that Coach Stringer and the Rutgers Women's Basketball team will handle this situation with class as always. Coach Stringer does a fantastic job in adverse situations. I know that the state of New Jersey, the university, family and friends will refuse to let this ignorance soil their achievements. These young women played their hearts out during the NCAA tournament and I thought they represented Rutgers University with the utmost class!
"Imus' racial comments are unacceptable and inappropriate. The fact that this is not the first time that improper comments were made concerning Black athletes shows where Imus stands. Not only were the comments racist, they were also misogynistic. Therefore, I do not feel that an apology or the two week suspension is ample punishment. It is my understanding that his show is supposed to be comedic. Who does this humor?
Nonetheless, I believe that MSNBC/CBS will make the right decision." 

Just so we're clear, those kind of comments are "unnacceptable," and any apology or two week suspension for those kind of comments is not "ample punishment."  Got it.  Just wanted to be clear on that point.   And for the record, I agree with that general sentiment that was expressed here against Imus.  Of course, we didn't need all the glamor, glitz, fan fair and other oportunistic side effects that tend to come along with a public denouncement of this calliber, but nevertheless the underlying point made here at the end of the day against Imus was a legitimate one.  If only this story stopped here...but unfortunatley it doesn't.

Cappie Pondexter.  Open Mouth.  Insure Foot.  Close Mouth.

A New York Liberty guard and former Rutgers star, Pondexter, 28, saw the images and was inspired to send a text message on Twitter: “What if God was tired of the way they treated their own people in there own country! Idk guys he makes no mistakes.”
For good measure — and perhaps egged on by her Twitter followers — she also texted: “u just never knw! They did pearl harbor so u can’t expect anything less.
On Monday, apparently after being told that she had offended a nation and embarrassed herself, her league and her team, Pondexter issued the obligatory apology.
She said she was sorry.
“I wanna apologize to anyone I may hurt or offended during this tragic time,” the Twitter message said. “I didn’t realize that my words could be interpreted in the manner which they were.
“The least thing I wanted was to hurt or offend anyone so again I truly apologize. If you’ve lost respect for me that’s totally fine but please don’t let me or my words lose the respect of u the WNBA and what it stands for.” 

I just have one question for Pondexter:   What the HECK was you thinking???

Not only did you disrespect an entire nation of people who are going through one helluva crisis right now, but you also managed to discredit yourself, Coach Stringer, Al Sharpton and anybody else who co-signed to the comments you made regarding Don Imus.  There are certain people who spend their entire existence looking for any modicum of illegitimacy in anybody who dares to stand up and tell them that they can't be as racist as they want to be in public, and by adding yourself onto the list of racially insensitive people you have now successfully given them ammunition to discredit anybody else who stands up for the cause in the future.  Congratulations.  And the icing on the cake:  it wasn't even necessary for you to comment on Japan in the first place!  All of a sudden you're the Secretary of State now?  Again, what the HECK was you thinking???

And to add insult to injury, Cappie Pondexter did NOT recieve any suspension whatsoever, let alone the two weeks suspension that she said was not enough for Don Imus.

Here's a tip: the next time a country gets hit by multiple natural disasters, nuclear meltdowns and loses over 4,000 human lives and you get the urge to comment on it, do us all a favor:  don't.

What the heck was Cappie Pondexter thinking?
Is there a racial double standard here?
What should happen to public figures who make offensive comments?
Does Cappie Pondexter have any credibility to ever call out another "Don Imus"-type event?
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