There’s no connection between Damon Bruce and free speech

Damon Bruce’s Rant and Free Speech

11/11/13 in NFL   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

Jun 11, 2013; Davie, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins offensive tackle Jonathan Martin (71) during practice drills at the Doctors Hospital Training Facility at Nova Southeastern University.  Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY SportsIf you hadn’t heard of Damon Bruce before, undoubtedly you know the name now. Or you know what it was that “that radio guy” said on his show Friday about women in discussing to the Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito case.
 
I wrote about it here and you can listen to the audio.
 
After being told who Damon Bruce actually was, many were offended or at least shocked that he would be so stupid to say these types of inflammatory things on the air. Maybe that was the point. Suffice it to say had he not made those statements, I wouldn’t know who he is and nor would I care.
 
I didn’t see many defending Bruce, but Rob Neyer on Twitter gave a defense of him because Bruce had been nice to Neyer personally. I really don’t have much interest in what Neyer says about anything and am not sure why there was almost as intense a reaction to Neyer defending Bruce as there was for Bruce saying what he said in the first place. Today, Neyer wrote this post on SB Nation giving his side of the story. Much of it goes into a discussion about how free speech can spur debate no matter which side of the argument you’re on.
 
What it comes down to isn’t the free speech argument and how Bruce being fired would possibly hinder that. It’s that Bruce’s statements, from a business standpoint, were so offensive that his radio station wouldn’t be firing him because of what he said, but because having him on their airwaves was not good for their business.
 
The station, KNBR in San Francisco, has reportedly suspended Bruce. This might die down. I’m not sure whether Bruce is a big enough personality that a large audience would have heard what he said had it not been plastered all over the media after the fact.
 
The idea of free speech is taken too far when it enters the workplace and one seemingly believes that the right makes it okay to say anything no matter how it is interpreted and not be held accountable for it. Had Bruce been a larger media personality who was known throughout the country, it would be easier for the station to compare what he said with the reaction to it, count up the amount of money he brings in via advertising revenue and determine that it’s worth it to keep him around no matter what he says. That has nothing to do with free speech. It’s selective enforcement based on how valuable or expendable an entity is. 
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11/12/13   |   cam_barr   |   1 respect

Dan_B wrote:
Why thank you, sir.

No doubt

11/11/13   |   Dan_B   |   1066 respect

PAULLEBOWITZ wrote:
I don't think it counts as a rant if it's dead-on point. 

Why thank you, sir.

11/11/13   |   PAULLEBOWITZ   |   109 respect

I don't think it counts as a rant if it's dead-on point. 

11/11/13   |   Dan_B   |   1066 respect

I have always found the misunderstanding of "freedom of speech" in this country interesting. The 1st Amendment reads: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press..." I bolded "Congress" because the 1st Amendment addresses government actions, not the actions of private companies (like KNBR).

So when teams get mad when athletes said stupid things and people react by saying there is freedom of speech, that is silly. That just means that athlete can't get prosecuted for that speech -- it doesn't mean the team, or the league (hello, Roger Goodell), can't get mad. 

--end rant--