Monday, December 17, 2012
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Just like there's a Cammie Granato for every Brendan Shanahan or a Bill Mazeroski for every Lee Smith, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame opens its doors to the likes of Donna Summer and Public Enemy, who neither rock nor roll, at the exclusion of bands like Deep Purple and Yes, who remain classic rock radio staples 40-plus years after breaking into the business. Summer and Public Enemy are successful in their own right, but for rock and roll purists, the disco and hip hop genres are the designated hitter and overtime shootout of the music world.
In the better late than never category, Rush being named to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame a good ten years after they'd earned it was an honor akin to Paul Henderson getting a long overdue call from the Hockey Hall or Cooperstown finally deigning to embrace Tim Raines.
One area that the sports halls pay lip service to but the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame doesn't concern itself with is the so-called character clause, which dictates that members at least give the appearance of being morally and ethically upstanding. As heavy a toll as strict enforcement of that clause would take on the pantheons of sport, if you weeded all the drunks, drug abusers, cheaters, gamblers and other assorted miscreants out of rock and roll, you'd be left with the Osmonds and...well, you'd be left with the Osmonds.
Thursday, December 6, 2012
Whether or not you agree with his take, Bob Costas was the right person in the right place at the right time to talk about gun control when he tackled the issue head-on during NBC's Sunday night football telecast.
There's been criticism from the usual trigger-happy suspects that Costas was outside his areas of jurisdiction and expertise, but if there's one thing America loves more than guns, it's football, so what better place and time for addressing a murder-suicide committed by a gun-toting NFL player than a prime time football broadcast on network television the day after the crime? And spare me the claptrap about Costas being a one-dimensional jock sniffer who's not qualified to comment on broader social issues. He's an intelligent, articulate, measured voice of reason in any debate within or outside the sporting arena, and he's got the resume to prove it. Even if Costas wasn't one of the most informed, well-rounded broadcasters on television, his detractors conveniently overlook that along with their cherished right to bear arms, the US constitution guarantees free speech and freedom of the press. By acknowleding a divisive issue at a sensitive time, Bob Costas wasn't only within his rights, he was relevant, appropriate and professionally responsible.