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No, A-Rod doesn’t say anything about us as a culture

Aug 28, 2013, 11:06 AM EDT

a-rod homer getty Getty Images

On the one hand I like it when baseball stories break into the mainstream. You want more people talking about and thinking about baseball, right? It’s a good thing.

But then when it actually happens you end up with stuff like this:

… there are a lot more important things to think about than the trials and tribulations of professional sports figures. But the case of A-Rod opens a window to give us a view of where we are—and where we need to be going—as a culture.

See, no matter how much I love his game, how anyone can look at A-Rod and say anything meaningful about where we are as a culture is beyond me. He was an athletic freak from the youngest of ages, held separate and apart — and usually above — normal people. From the time he hit the bigs he has been elevated even higher. And he has done so on a pile of money most of us could never fathom.

I don’t know what makes that guy tick or whether he’s a narcissist or any other number of things he’s been called. But boy howdy I’m not sure how he, of all people, can tell us where “we” are as a culture, let alone where we need to be going.

  1. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    The article seems to suggest if A-Rod just finds Jesus then he’ll be fine.

    I can’t see that helping. Everyone knows that Jesus hates the Yankees.

    • proudlycanadian - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:21 AM

      The Yankees sold out to Lucifer a long time ago.

      • yahmule - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:42 AM

        This is true. They even made a documentary about it.

      • If the Shoe Fits - Aug 28, 2013 at 3:19 PM

        It wasn’t a sale to Lucifer- it was a cooperative agreement, funded by the city of New York, with a long term option to buy.

    • Liam - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:28 AM

      Dealing him for Pineda continues to haunt the franchise.

  2. anxovies - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:20 AM

    Well, how about where thousands of people, including small children, boo and hurl curses at him when he comes up to bat before he has his day in court (or arbitration)? And where he is vilified in the most vile manner by millions of people who have never met him, and only know about him from the reports of a small group of people in the media, most of whom have also never met him? What does that say?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:46 AM

      That we, as a society, suck?

    • paperlions - Aug 28, 2013 at 1:38 PM

      That some something about society, and it isn’t particularly novel to today….people have stood and booed/hissed/jeered people they didn’t approve of for centuries. That has nothing to do with Arod or “where” we are as a society.

    • bigharold - Aug 28, 2013 at 3:07 PM

      “… he is vilified in the most vile manner by millions of people who have never met him, and only know about him from the reports of a small group of people in the media, most of whom have also never met him? What does that say?”

      It says a lot of people have no problem with a pack mentality and there should more individual critical thinking.

  3. spursareold - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    What he says about us as a culture is “win at any cost”. That was pretty easy, Craig.

    • bfunk1978 - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:02 PM

      …and don’t get caught. That’s the other thing he says. Win at any cost and don’t get caught. Because they’ll love you when you win and hate you when you get caught. It says that we demand performance and don’t care how it’s obtained, just don’t tell us.

    • zzalapski - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:05 PM

      I thought Nixon was a good barometer of that, way before A-Rod was born.

      • paperlions - Aug 28, 2013 at 1:40 PM

        …and Nixon wasn’t a pioneer in that regard. Win at all cost as a paradigm as old anything in society.

    • apkyletexas - Aug 28, 2013 at 2:01 PM

      What A-Rod says about America is that we make the East German Olympic teams of the 1970’s look like a bunch of rank amateurs.

  4. alexo0 - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:25 AM

    This article counts as mainstream?

  5. JustMeMike - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:34 AM

    Just wondering Craig –

    Wondering why you didn’t name the author of the piece, wondering why you chose to not name the author and instead send us to a site called LifeSiteNews.com so we could see the article.

    Can we have a day or three without A-Rod on Hardball Talk…

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:47 AM

      You knew what the story was about when you saw the heading, clicked on it anyway, and want to complain about why we don’t get stories about other people?

    • babyfarkmcgeezax - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:54 AM

      Agreed. Why is Craig getting worked up about what some no-name writer for what appears to be a nutjob fundamentalist site thinks about A-Rod? And that brings up another question: Why is Craig visiting nutjob fundamentalist sites?

  6. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Aug 28, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    I do think that our obsession with A-Rod and other gossip-type celebrities say a lot about ourselves as a culture. All anyone cares about anymore are the Lindsay Lohans, the Miley Cyrus, the Alex Rodriguez’s, the Anthony Weiner’s, the Charlie Sheens, the Jersey Shore casts and Desperate Housemakers, etc. It’s the TMZ generation. The way we love to build people up just to tear them down. The way we love to get up on our high horse and judge others. And the way we vilify those around us who are really not doing anything wrong to anyone else, yet we still seem to need to bond by hating another, instead of bonding by looking at the things we have in common.

    Alex didn’t do any harm against me. You know who harms me? The guy who robs from my house. The guy who cheats on his taxes. The politician who steals from his constituents.

    Let’s worry a little more about people who are actually, you know, doing damage to society, and a little less about what trashy celebrity is doing what stupid drug or is sleeping with some other trashy celebrity.

  7. chiadam - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Yep, sitting around, reading everything you can get your hands on and searching for one story, paragraph, sentence or word that offends you so you can rush off to your blog and write the same thing for the billionth time…that’s the life. How fulfilling.

    • nbjays - Aug 28, 2013 at 1:09 PM

      So you can rush on here and bitch about it…

  8. gpanfile - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    I’m sure that when A-rod was young, there were other guys who were, let’s say, great at math, or really helpful to other people. That A-Rod was idolized for playing a game even then says something about our culture.

    When he did become a professional, he got paid insane amounts of money that didn’t go to, let’s say, really good teachers, or really helpful social workers. That too says something about our society.

    While he was in his prime, he and other players took drugs in order to play better, and for some amount of years everyone looked the other way. Just like they did when prior generations took speed. I don’t read much about the red liquid, or amphetamines, or how clean earlier generations really were. How clean were they? Do we know? Do we care? If not, why not? And that, along with the big reversal in the last few years, where standard operating procedure for players who wanted money and glory… and were given it by this culture… says something about us.

    Finally, the cycle of idolatry and demonization which happens not only in sports but also in business, entertainment, and politics, just to name three, says something about our culture.

    In other words, the thesis expressed in the title to this filler ‘article’ could not be more wrong if it stated that the Sun was a cube, or the Moon made of green cheese. This guy has a job why?

  9. offseasonblues - Aug 28, 2013 at 12:54 PM

    And this:

    “He was an athletic freak from the youngest of ages, held separate and apart — and usually above — normal people. From the time he hit the bigs he has been elevated even higher. And he has done so on a pile of money most of us could never fathom.”

    doesn’t say anything about our culture, nothing at all. Nope.

  10. nobody78 - Aug 28, 2013 at 1:08 PM

    Yes, A-Rod’s an outlier, but the way we react to him says an enormous amount about our culture. Are we the sorts who say “That was wrong” or “I would have done it and you would too”? That makes a huge difference.

  11. Anoesis - Aug 28, 2013 at 4:35 PM

    A tone-deaf article like this wielding an astounding level of denial says even more about society. Players like Braun and Rodriguez are mirror examples of most of the Fortune 500 companies in this country. Win (money) at any cost and chalk up getting caught occasionally to just another business expense. No morals, no introspection, no regret.

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