This was in the New York Amsterdam News last week – an outlet that bills itself as “New York’s largest and most influential Black-owned and operated business institutions” – written by Jaime C. Harris:
The media has reared its hypocritical head again.
A large contingent of them has granted A-Rod a pardon while still portraying Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Roger Clemens and other steroid users as pariahs. Undoubtedly, their forgiving hearts have been opened as a result of Rodriquez’s tightly scripted apology, ongoing outward contrition, and subsequent emergence as a wholesome public figure and seemingly selfless teammate.
Ostensibly obsessed with his legacy, Rodriquez has methodically plotted a course he hopes will end with him being voted into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame by the media when his playing days are done, moving ever so carefully since being outed.
Yet those unreceptive to A-Rod’s makeover objectively view him for what he is: a phenomenally gifted baseball player whose achievements have been forever tainted by his use of illegal performance enhancing drugs; including the amazing numbers he put up this past post-season in helping lead the Yankees to their 27th World Series title in which he batted .365 with 6 homers and 18 RBI.
Rodriguez’s transformation is immaterial to the fact that he should not be distinguished from any other transgressor simply because he has been on his best behavior since admitting using steroids. He no longer can be painted as the anti-Bonds, a role to which he was briefly elevated. Let’s not forget Rodriquez did not come forward voluntarily in an act of nobility. He got busted by a Sports Illustrated reporter.
You wouldn’t know this by reading and listening to revisionist historians who depict A-Rod’s return to glory as if were the story of Nelson Mandela. The subtext is the media’s collective ego will not allow them to move past their disdain for Bonds, McGwire and Clemens simply because these men dismiss the press and reject showing remorse.
So the media showers love on A-Rod as a gesture of reciprocal good will. However, even if Rodriquez maintains his current persona until the day of his retirement, the only way he should enter the Hall of Fame before Bonds, McGwire and Clemens, three players with unquestioned Hall credentials, is if he buys a ticket.
I don’t agree that Mark McGwire has “unquestioned Hall credentials.” But, Bonds and Clemens do…per most. And, they’ll probably get into Cooperstown before A-Rod. So, that’s sort of a moot point. But, it is interesting that many are quick to turn the page on Alex Rodriguez’ PED use – and not so quick to forgive Bonds and Clemens. I wonder why that is?
It very well could be that Bonds and Clemens are not working, all that much, with the media whereas A-Rod is a source for them now…