Why "Have You Stopped Beating Your Wife?" Isn't Controversial
NBA

Odds Are, You Overreacted To David Stern's Comments Today

6/13/12 in NBA   |   kantwistaye   |   4211 respect

Jun 12, 2012; Oklahoma City, OK, USA;  NBA commissioner David Stern (right) addresses the media before game one between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Miami Heat in the 2012 NBA Finals at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-US PRESSWIREBy now you've probably heard that Jim Rome had David Stern on his radio show today and things got, well, heated.  If you haven't, here's the audio.  The highlight of the audio is near the beginning after Rome asks Stern about the NBA lottery being rigged, which is a very biased and loaded question.  Stern then responds with "Have you stopped beating your wife?"  It immediately caused an uproar on Twitter.  An uproar, which quite frankly was stupid and showed a lack of knowledge on rhetorical devices.

Stern in no way was accusing Rome of ever beating his wife.  The fact is, this is a common rhetorical device.  In my classes on polling I've taken its a common retort to questions you feel are loaded to get a certain response.  As Zach Harper, of Talk Hoops, pointed out with his work in the courts its also commonly used by lawyers.  The point is, it puts the questioner on the defensive with an equally irrational, loaded question to point out how irrational, biased, and leading the questioner is being.  Its not literal.

Most importantly, Stern was right to use it.  The quesiton of a conspiracy with the lottery is stupid.  Conspiracies are almost impossible to pull off, especially with so much money at stake.  Added on to that, every team has a representative for the lottery, four media members watch it, and an outside independent group verifies it.  There is absolutely no way the lottery is rigged and its irresponsible for someone like Rome to further the idea.

Unfortunately, this rhetorical line by Stern has allowed the rest of the interview, which is hilarious to go unnoticed.  Stern rips Rome's entire career and tells him that Stephen A. Smith is more important. 
Notify me by email about comments that follow mine. Preview

6/14/12   |   kobe_lova   |   61240 respect

kantwistaye wrote:
He's a total dick, but I'm okay with him being a condescending dick when it puts a fake tough guy "journalist" in his place.  It also apparently taught a ton of people about the phrase "When did you stop beating your wife?" which I thought everyone had known prior to today.

Can you say that? And I see your point on the interview, I just found it worth noting that Stern could in fact have done it.... and Rome did have a point in saying that others were thinking that. Sure, he didn't have to ask but a lot of NBA fans did have that conversation.

6/13/12   |   kantwistaye   |   4211 respect

kobe_lova wrote:
Look at you, writing and schtuff again. Good schtuff...



but some conspiracies ARE true, and Stern is a c***. Yes, I blame and judge him.

He's a total dick, but I'm okay with him being a condescending dick when it puts a fake tough guy "journalist" in his place.  It also apparently taught a ton of people about the phrase "When did you stop beating your wife?" which I thought everyone had known prior to today.

6/13/12   |   Pat   |   5229 respect

I agree 100%. Also, I think it was a great response by Stern. Jim Rome is an absolute joke, and I'm glad Stern called him out on it. This interview gave me a new level of respect for a commissioner I had previously thought very little about.

If you're going to try to perpetuate an NBA conspiracy theory, I think it should start and finish with the officiating.

6/13/12   |   kobe_lova   |   61240 respect

Look at you, writing and schtuff again. Good schtuff...



but some conspiracies ARE true, and Stern is a c***. Yes, I blame and judge him.