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Must-click link: The tortured life of Eric Show

Sep 10, 2010, 4:30 PM EDT

Those of us who have even heard of Eric Show probably can only say a few things about him.  He pitched for the Padres in the 80s. He gave up Pete Rose’s 4,192nd hit. He was kind of a freaky John Birch Society guy.  He had serious substance abuse issues that led to his death.

As is always the case, however, there is much more to the story.  A great — but harrowing — place to start is Tom Friend’s riveting piece on Show at ESPN.com today.

And may none of us ever be judged or defined solely by our worst moments on this Earth.

  1. mgflolox - Sep 10, 2010 at 4:45 PM

    Unfortuantely, the only way too many people can make themselves feel better about themselves is to judge other people by their worst moments. And even more unfortunately, it seems most of them gravitate towards sportswriting.

  2. CM_Wang - Sep 10, 2010 at 5:00 PM

    The attempt to whitewash (pun intended) Show’s association with the John Birch Society ruins an otherwise excellent article. Arguing that he’s not anti-Semitic or racist by pointing to the facts that he had a Jewish agent and talked to Alan Wiggins is crap. The guy was a bigot. No need for that to define him – I mean, lots of people are, and clearly he had a complex and interesting life – but no need for Friend to BS about it either.

  3. Tony A - Sep 10, 2010 at 5:19 PM

    I’ve always referred to that as the “Jerry Springer” effect…it is at the very heart of that show’s success…

  4. okobojicat - Sep 10, 2010 at 5:23 PM

    Wow. Really? I don’t think it does much white washing at all. White washing would not acknowledging the Birch society at all.
    If you’re going to call him a bigot (other than saying he was a member of the John Birch Society) the impetus is on you to show that came from. Because honestly, just because you’re a member of a very very conservative group doesn’t make you a bigot.

  5. dprat - Sep 10, 2010 at 6:14 PM

    That seems a bit naive, really. The article talks about how much research Eric did on other religions, and he obviously was intellectually curious about religion, philosophy, astronomy, music, etc. To suggest he wasn’t aware of the very, very deeply anti-Semitic and racist beliefs of the group he proudly belonged to, and proselytized for, just doesn’t pass the smell test.

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