Sunday, August 22, 2010

Dumb Justice

Hate to be presumptuous, but we presume we’re not the only semi-regular reader of the Houston Chronicle left a tad nonplussed last Friday by the vehemence of sports hack (a redundancy, we know) Richard Justice’s full-throated, half-hysterical page-one denunciation of Roger Clemens, who, according to Justice’s weasely arms-length formulation, is destined to be “remembered as a liar and a cheat.” (Not that Justice’s calling him either.....) That, of course, is because Clemens, simply by virtue of having been indicted by a federal grand jury for denying to to some congresspeople with nothing better to do that he used steroids, is stone guilty of what his accuser, ex-cop Brian McNamee, says Clemens did. Justice rushed to judgment with no hesitation: "Even an acquittal won't get his good name back. There’s too much doubt.” Clemens' mortal sin, according to Justice, is not having himself hit in the tush with a proscribed substance but rather his lack of "contrition," his unwillingness to bow down to sports-world ayatollahs like Lil' Richard and acknowledge regret for doing something he's denied doing, repeatedly and adamantly.

We find it interesting that at the Chronicle the presumption of innocence until proven guilty extends only to Death Row inmates, long after they’ve been convicted by a jury (except for this unrepentant scuzzbucket, whose crime was so heinous and guilt so clear that he didn't rate the usual boo-hoo treatment the paper accords capital murderers), but a rich white guy like Clemens is automatically guilty by indictment. (Perhaps Justice has some empirical evidence of Clemens' guilt: Perhaps McNamee called him over and showed him the bloody gauze he purported to have saved after allegedly bangin' Clemens in the butt with steroids and HGH; perhaps Justice even witnessed the bangin' himself!) Adding to the pile-on nature of the Chronicle's coverage was this Sunday editorial wherein the writer gamely allowed that "maybe [Clemens] didn't" take steroids before quickly adding: "But plenty of people who know more about it than we do think he did." And who might this "plenty" be? Why none other than the all-knowing Richard Justice, whose "liar and a cheat" pronouncement is quoted in the editorial as if it had been inscribed on a stone and trundled down from The Mount. Apparently no other in-the-know types were handy for citation.

We are not, as we’ve noted several times in the past, a big fan or much of an admirer of Clemens (he’s no Stan the Man, is he, but who today is?), but we have no idea, no evidence at all, whether he took illegal performance-enhancing drugs or didn't (and, as we've also noted, we find the phony hand-ringing over steroid use to be not only silly but hypocritical in this, our drug-besotted society –– and we’re not talking about just the illegal ones). However, we are now rooting for his acquittal and awaiting the page-one column by Richard Justice that will follow, surely as night follows day, celebrating Roger Clemens' grit and determination and refusal to give in to his persecutors.

Here's some past postings on Clemens, et. al. They're all good: What We All Knew, and When Did We Know It?, They'll Hunt Me Down and Hang Me For My Crimes, When I Tell About My Dirty Life and Times, Precious Keepsakes of Our Fleeting Time Together, No Time for Vegans.


The Fishing Musician said...

You're spot on about the Chron and their love affair with particularly heinous and guilty death row inmates, except for the rare example last week.

Rorschach said...

Never read his crap so I never get outraged at him. I just can't be bothered to waste that part of my life.