January 24, 2012

Right or wrong?

Numerous writers, mostly of the sports variety, are up in arms about Boston Bruins star goalie Tim Thomas snubbing the White House by not attending Barack Obama's hosting of the NHL champs:

Shabby. Immature. Unprofessional. Self-centered. Bush league. Need I go on? All that and more applies to what Thomas did, on a day when Cup teammates Mark Recchi (now retired), Shane Hnidy (a radio guy these days in Winnipeg), and Tomas Kaberle (a member of some Original Six team in Canada), all gladly joined the red-white-blue-black-and-gold hugfest at the White House.

I'm of the mind that Thomas should have attended. Regardless of who holds the presidency, it's about honor, respect, and team. However, again, the issue becomes about the media. What if George W. Bush was still in the WH and a player refused to attend such an event because of his personal stance against the Iraq War? As Shannen Coffin notes,

Notably, no one at the Boston Globe complained when Red Sox owner John Henry and general manager Theo Epstein, both dyed-in-the-wool Democrats, opted out of the invites to the Bush White House after the 2007 World Series.

Exactly. It's exactly like how the media portrayed the Tea Party and the Occupy Wall Street movement -- the former is inherently "bad," while the latter has a "legitimate" gripe. Henry and Epstein's snubs were, to the media I'm sure, "principled dissents" to Bush's policies. But Thomas's? "Shabby. Immature. Unprofessional. Self-centered." Coffin also notes how Globe writer Kevin DuPont is way off base in accusing Thomas of being un-American:

Mr. Dupont’s most woeful error, however, was in suggesting that Thomas’s disagreement with the current government equals a lack of love of country. “It was the same government yesterday, and will be today, that protected his country, his security, his family, and his right to make $5 million a year, all last season.” Tim Thomas was a U.S. Olympian and won a silver medal for his country. Mr. Dupont contends that someone “so disgusted with our government ought to turn in the sweater and the medal. It must be a horrible burden, if not a pox, to have them in his house.”

Tim Thomas’s objections to the excesses of government are entirely American, born of his love of country, not harbored in spite of it.

Right. And how many media types would have made that exact same argument regarding George W. Bush's presidency? It's always that way with the Left: when they're in power, dissent is "un-American." Where they're out of power, dissent is the "greatest form of patriotism."

UPDATE: Hockey News writer Ken Campbell nails it:

... that if a few years ago some stars “had snubbed the White House in 2004 to protest the Bush-led U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, my guess is they ... would have had all kinds of unwavering support in the media for taking such a courageous stance.” (h/t: Newsbusters.)

Posted by Hube at January 24, 2012 04:59 PM | TrackBack

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