June 28, 2017

WHAT ARE THE ODDS KEVIN DRUM GETS HOUNDED OUT OF MOTHER JONES FOR THIS? Somebody Needs to Defend John McEnroe. Why Not Me?

McEnroe is getting slagged for insulting Serena Williams by saying she’d rank #700 on the men’s circuit. Also for the sin of thinking that female athletes have to be compared to men. And for being an idiot. Etc.

This is ridiculous. McEnroe can run his mouth with the best of them, but in this case he’s completely innocent. Just read the interview:

McEnroe says Serena William is the best female tennis player in history, full stop. This is something he’s said many times before.
The interviewer then sloppily changes the subject to whether Williams is the best player in the world. Not the best woman in history, but the best in the world right now among all tennis players. This is laughably ignorant.
McEnroe is obviously taken aback, but then answers accurately: If we’re talking about the quality of all tennis players on the planet right now, Williams isn’t even close. This is completely noncontroversial, and it’s something Williams herself has said herself.

McEnroe didn’t bring this up out of nowhere. He wasn’t trying to say anything about Serena Williams or women’s tennis in general. He wasn’t trying to generate controversy. He was responding to a dumb question from an interviewer. I suppose he could have told the interviewer he didn’t understand what she was saying, and then asked for a clarification, but instead he just answered and moved on—or would have, anyway, except that the interviewer just wouldn’t let it go.

Since then, half the sports writers in America have proved they have too much free time on their hands by going after McEnroe.

Well, at least half the sports writers in America now are Pajama Boy types who are leftist shibboleth-repeaters first, sports journalists second. Or fifth.

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