As we discussed on our critically-acclaimed podcast last night, the murder-suicide involving Jovan Belcher speaks for itself. It's a terrible tragedy. Unfortunately, its secondary legacy will be to further enable the Faux-Outrage Police to deputize themselves to patrol the airwaves and internet drumming up mock-disgust at others' perceived failure to be outraged enough, or sad enough, or sensitive enough, or whatever other emotion the Faux-Outrage Police dictate that we feel.
Last night our discussion was about Seth Rorabaugh of the Post Gazette's Empty Netters blog taking great offense that ESPN described Adam Schefter as "ESPN Insider Adam Schefter" when Schefter was reporting on the breaking news out of Kansas City. This morning, Richard Deitsch of SI.com upped the Indignant-Ante to infinity by devoting over 3,000 words to chronicling the supposed failures of various sports media entities to devote a Deitsch-approved amount of attention to the situation in Kansas City.
|Richard Deitsch, mid-faux-outrage|
|OH THE HUMANITY!|
|"Shannon, your thoughts on gun control?"|
|Lindsey Graham, you apologize to this goat right now!|
Deitsch, Rorabaugh, and so many others have turned tragedies into a platform to express pretend-outrage about things they aren't that outraged about and aren't likely going to do anything to prevent (does #Kony2012 ring a bell?). It's nothing more than jockeying for the highest seat on the highest horse, not because you care about horses, but because you like the view.
On the other hand, some of us can understand that what happened in Kansas City is a tragedy, but we still want to watch and hear about football. We're not offended if a football show uses its platform to discuss sensitive issues. But we're also not offended if an NFL pregame show with Bill Cowher and Shannon Sharpe on it doesn't touch on domestic violence or mental illness issues with Deitsch-approved tact.
Finally, it's worth noting that while Rorabaugh took offense to what he saw as ESPN's shameless self-promotion, Deitsch actually lauded ESPN for striking the "appropriate somber note." It just goes to show that even when the Faux-Outrage Police disagree about some things, they always agree about one thing: they're outraged.