To be honest I’d meant to post my response to the now-infamous Ann Coulter op-ed piece, “Any growing interest in soccer a sign of nation’s moral decay” a few days ago. One, because it’s goddamn absurd, and two, because run off from google searches may direct some curious eyes towards my blog. Never opposed to the pageviews.
Italicized text is that crazy dumb cunt’s. I’ll respond paragraph-by-paragraph.
I’ve held off on writing about soccer for a decade — or about the length of the average soccer game — so as not to offend anyone. But enough is enough. Any growing interest in soccer can only be a sign of the nation’s moral decay.
Holy fucking dad jokes, Batman! You should hold off for another few decades because you don’t know what they fuck you’re talking about. Two rich old white dudes buying American politics is a more salient example of the nation’s moral decay.
• Individual achievement is not a big factor in soccer. In a real sport, players fumble passes, throw bricks and drop fly balls — all in front of a crowd. When baseball players strike out, they’re standing alone at the plate. But there’s also individual glory in home runs, touchdowns and slam-dunks.
If I’m being nitpicky: soccer matches are, in fact, played in front of a crowd. There’s a catcher and umpire behind the plate. Doesn’t somebody throw the touchdowns to Calvin Johnson? Doesn’t someone lob the ball up for a Blake Griffin slam dunk? PS I love that she hyphenated slam dunk.
In soccer, the blame is dispersed and almost no one scores anyway. There are no heroes, no losers, no accountability, and no child’s fragile self-esteem is bruised. There’s a reason perpetually alarmed women are called “soccer moms,” not “football moms.”
Remember that time a guy got killed in his home country for scoring an own-goal in the world cup? Why didn’t they just chop the foot off of everyone that was on the team?
That’s also not why they’re called soccer moms. They’re called soccer moms because their kids play soccer (and likely won’t have long-term damage from concussions).
Do they even have MVPs in soccer? Everyone just runs up and down the field and, every once in a while, a ball accidentally goes in. That’s when we’re supposed to go wild. I’m already asleep.
Yes, they do have MVPs. Thanks for laying out your ignorance in such conveniently bite-sized portions. Football, basketball, and hockey all involve going up and down a field waiting for a ball (puck) to go in. Hockey scores specifically used to be a lot like soccer scores before some rule changes to increase scoring were implemented.
• Liberal moms like soccer because it’s a sport in which athletic talent finds so little expression that girls can play with boys. No serious sport is co-ed, even at the kindergarten level.
I don’t think that’s why liberal moms prefer soccer. I do think that’s why liberal moms won’t vote for a party that’s actively sexist.
• No other “sport” ends in as many scoreless ties as soccer. This was an actual marquee sign by the freeway in Long Beach, California, about a World Cup game last week: “2nd period, 11 minutes left, score: 0:0.” Two hours later, another World Cup game was on the same screen: “1st period, 8 minutes left, score: 0:0.” If Michael Jackson had treated his chronic insomnia with a tape of Argentina vs. Brazil instead of Propofol, he’d still be alive, although bored.
You keep the King of Pop out of this. No knockout/championship games end in ties. Like an NHL regular season game there’s an extra time period and a shootout.
Even in football, by which I mean football, there are very few scoreless ties — and it’s a lot harder to score when a half-dozen 300-pound bruisers are trying to crush you.
It’s still pretty damn hard to score sometimes.
• The prospect of either personal humiliation or major injury is required to count as a sport. Most sports are sublimated warfare. As Lady Thatcher reportedly said after Germany had beaten England in some major soccer game: Don’t worry. After all, twice in this century we beat them at their national game.
Using soccer commentary to explain that soccer is a lesser sport is one of the most bizarre things I’ve ever read. How many people get major injuries playing golf? Or dressage?
Baseball and basketball present a constant threat of personal disgrace.
Only if you’re an asshole.
In hockey, there are three or four fights a game — and it’s not a stroll on beach to be on ice with a puck flying around at 100 miles per hour.
And playing hockey is nothing like taking a stroll on the beach. Neither is soccer, baseball, baking cupcakes, getting a root canal, buying car insurance, or getting a prostate exam.
After a football game, ambulances carry off the wounded. After a soccer game, every player gets a ribbon and a juice box.
Wait, really? What football games are you watching? That sounds dangerous. Also, I got snacks AND a juicebox after teeball games.
• You can’t use your hands in soccer. (Thus eliminating the danger of having to catch a fly ball.) What sets man apart from the lesser beasts, besides a soul, is that we have opposable thumbs. Our hands can hold things. Here’s a great idea: Let’s create a game where you’re not allowed to use them!
Catching a fly ball isn’t all that dangerous. To proclaim that other beasts are lesser, regardless of criteria (thumbs, non-existent souls, the ability to survive outdoors for a winter, naked, and not succumb to hypothermia) is a pretty flawed, anthropocentric worldview.
I could hit/catch a baseball thrown at me with my hand. It would break my bones, ergo a bat and glove. It’s how the game has been designed, it’s not an attack on your evolutionary advantageous appendages (though you’re probably of the belief that god created man as they are). If you’re looking for soccer with hands, watch handball.
• I resent the force-fed aspect of soccer. The same people trying to push soccer on Americans are the ones demanding that we love HBO’s “Girls,” light-rail, Beyonce and Hillary Clinton. The number of New York Times articles claiming soccer is “catching on” is exceeded only by the ones pretending women’s basketball is fascinating.
Who’s force feeding us soccer? It’s the largest international event outside of the Olympics, it’ll have comprehensive coverage on television. HBO’s Girls? A pretty accurate representation of 20something white girls in Brooklyn, which is why it’s so goddamn insufferable to watch. Light-rail? Because your dependence on cars is causing endless traffic and the inevitable melting of our planet. Beyonce? I can’t. Hillary Clinton? 2016!
Soccer is catching on. It’s because the US’s domestic league is steadily increasing in talent level, there’s increased broadcasts of high level European soccer, and social media creates a truly interactive fan experience. Particularly the younger generation that’s not going to vote for the candidates your’e supporting.
I note that we don’t have to be endlessly told how exciting football is.
Except we are. There’s year-long coverage of such mundane aspects as training camp, preseason games, players’ offseason behavior, etc. We’re being forcefed football throughout the year, we’ll pay attention and hyperanalyze the sport during the 5 months it’s actually on TV.
• It’s foreign. In fact, that’s the precise reason the Times is constantly hectoring Americans to love soccer. One group of sports fans with whom soccer is not “catching on” at all, is African-Americans. They remain distinctly unimpressed by the fact that the French like it.
Xenophobia at its finest! Please Ms. Coulter, speak more to the opinions of African-Americans. You’d definitely make a great spokesperson for the people who you’d prefer to deny voting rights.
• Soccer is like the metric system, which liberals also adore because it’s European. Naturally, the metric system emerged from the French Revolution, during the brief intervals when they weren’t committing mass murder by guillotine.
We adore it because it’s rational and makes calculation/measurement infinitely more user-friendly. The fact that it goes into “science” and “technology” which you actively don’t believe in could ruffle some feathers in your camp.
Despite being subjected to Chinese-style brainwashing in the public schools to use centimeters and Celsius, ask any American for the temperature, and he’ll say something like “70 degrees.” Ask how far Boston is from New York City, he’ll say it’s about 200 miles.
Familiarity with the metric system is taught, functional use of it is not. It’s not, like “70 degrees”, because the planet is heating up at an alarming rate.
Liberals get angry and tell us that the metric system is more “rational” than the measurements everyone understands. This is ridiculous.
Totally said it was rational a few sentences ago by complete coincidence.
An inch is the width of a man’s thumb,
This isn’t true
a foot the length of his foot,
Neither is this
a yard the length of his belt.
The people you hang out with are much fatter than this.
That’s easy to visualize. How do you visualize 147.2 centimeters?
That’s about one and a half meters. How do you visualize 147.2 inches? Divide by 12? Again by 3?
• Soccer is not “catching on.” Headlines this week proclaimed “Record U.S. ratings for World Cup,” and we had to hear — again about the “growing popularity of soccer in the United States.”
If records are being set, how can you say that it’s not catching on? Oh, right, you’ve made a career out of denying facts.
The USA-Portugal game was the blockbuster match, garnering 18.2 million viewers on ESPN. This beat the second-most watched soccer game ever: The 1999 Women’s World Cup final (USA vs. China) on ABC. (In soccer, the women’s games are as thrilling as the men’s.)
This has more to do with nationalism than the sport or the gender of the people playing them. What were the ratings like for USA’s Olympic hockey matches? Probably more than any given game of the Stanley Cup Finals.
Run-of-the-mill, regular-season Sunday Night Football games average more than 20 million viewers; NFL playoff games get 30 to 40 million viewers; and this year’s Super Bowl had 111.5 million viewers.
Like I said, this has to do with the pervasive coverage of American football and the fact that these games are almost always held on the weekend – we’re free to watch them.
Remember when the media tried to foist British soccer star David Beckham and his permanently camera-ready wife on us a few years ago? Their arrival in America was heralded with 24-7 news coverage. That lasted about two days. Ratings tanked. No one cared.
This just makes it weirder that people are still watching the Kardashians.
If more “Americans” are watching soccer today, it’s only because of the demographic switch effected by Teddy Kennedy’s 1965 immigration law. I promise you: No American whose great-grandfather was born here is watching soccer. One can only hope that, in addition to learning English, these new Americans will drop their soccer fetish with time.
The perfect kicker. You’re a blue-blooded, white American. Maybe your great-great-grandfather was an immigrant (we all were at one point). Maybe he had kids with his cousin. Maybe he had illegitimate children with one of his slaves. But damn these people moving to AMERICA who can’t speak AMERICAN who don’t watch AMERICAN football. Get a fucking grip, lady.
I get it. You’re a real life, actual troll. You’re racist, sexist, xenophobic, and actively anti-intellectual. Don’t try to throw the world cup under the bus.
For a few weeks, the rest of us reach across the aisle, and embrace our brothers and sisters and root for the U S of A to kick in some dicks. If you’re not rooting for the USMNT, you may as well be a terrorist. As far as I’m concerned, you are.