I have read what the Washington Post’s Michael Wilbon and Len Shapiro have had to say about the tragic murder of Sean Taylor and I have to say, they are the lowest human beings known to mankind for their callous words about his death.
Michael Wilbon has already gone on record as twisting facts about Sean Taylor by saying:
I know how I feel about Taylor, and this latest news isn’t surprising in the least, not to me. Whether this incident is or isn’t random, Taylor grew up in a violent world, embraced it, claimed it, loved to run in it and refused to divorce himself from it. He ain’t the first and won’t be the last. We have no idea what happened, or if what we know now will be revised later. It’s sad, yes, but hardly surprising.
But Len Shapiro for the Washington Post took the cake by comparing Sean Taylor to Pacman Jones and Tank Johnson:
At the moment, it is far too soon to draw any conclusions as to how or why this tragedy occurred, why another young black man is now dead from a gunshot wound in his own home, why another athlete, Michael Vick, Pacman Jones, Tank Johnson, and now Sean Taylor becomes headline news for all the wrong reasons… Still, could anyone honestly say they never saw this coming? You’d have to be blind not to consider Taylor’s checkered past.
I need to know how because he missed league meetings and conversations with his head coach is that a checkered past? I want to know how because Sean Taylor never was convicted of any crime, is Sean Taylor suddenly running with gangs and embracing a thug life? He once plead down to a no contest plea, that is not convicted or considered guilty, for supposedly chasing down people who stole his ATV with a gun. In other words, getting his property back. There is no mention of the prosecutor who was using this case as advertising for his evening DJ’ing gig. There is no mention that the ONLY other time that Sean Taylor had a run in with the law was a DUI which the judge himself threw out of court due to no basis for him being arrested. I need to know why if Sean Taylor hasn’t divorced himself from his past, has every one he knew, to a man, said that in the past 2 years, he has become a different and even better man than he was before.
Len Shapiro and Michael Wilbon do not know Sean Taylor any more than us fans here in Washington do. The reason for this is, he never talked to them, us, or any of the media, and the media as a whole does not like anyone who doesn’t talk to them. It has happened time and time again that if someone spurns the media, they turn on him and make that person into a bad guy, a rebel, because they do not fall in line and do what the others do.
Being a young black male, missing meetings and being charged but never being convicted of any crime is enough for the old school press to label him a gang banger or at the very least, running with the wrong crowd. Michael Wilbon does not know what crowd Sean Taylor ran with, he never spoke to him. His own coach said that he enjoyed Sean Taylor’s friends just yesterday in a public address, if nearly 70 year old Joe Gibbs likes his friends, then what kind of crowd must Sean Taylor run with? People say his past caught up with him and they are not surprised, but that is a faulty assumption based off of what they think his personal life entailed. The truth is, they have no idea.
The truth is, no one knows except himself, his family, close friends and a select few teammates that hung with him…and no one, not Michael Wilbon, not Len Shapiro, NO ONE, has ANY right to say anything disparaging about Sean Taylor personal life because anyone who does say anything bad has no idea what Sean Taylor was doing aside from football.
To label him a gangbanger, a thug, a guy who ran in the wrong circles, a guy who “ran in a violent world, embraced it, claimed it” is a fallacy based off of what you assume he did because he was a young black man who did not always follow the establishment’s rules. Anyone who labels him any of this must be as threatened by him as wide-receivers who would not cross the middle of the field while he was around.
To the fans, he signed every autograph, he talked and smiled to them. To his friends, he was a happy, friendly guy they wanted to hang around. To his teammates he was a leader and a player who’s work ethic was to be admired. To his family, he was a loving father, son, brother, and partner. Not a single person has had anything bad to say about him besides the media, as indicative of Michael Wilbon and Len Shapiro of the Post. What does that say more for the media and the establishment/corporate America than Sean Taylor?
It is a sad indictment indeed. I once was a great fan of the writings of both those Washington Post scribes, but I fear both have lost a great level of respect with me for their words against a great Washington Redskin that was portrayed by the media as a bad guy, but was really a quiet misunderstood man who never cared enough about the media to change their view of him. Their view of him didn’t matter, the fans knew, and he was just a man who just wanted to play football the right way and raise his child as best he could.
His former teammate and friend Ryan Clark said it best in the Redskins Insider yesterday:
“Every time they show something about [t]his they show his legalities and things like that, but that’s not who he was,” Clark said. “it paints a picture like he lived a certain way, so he deserved to go a certain way. But he was a good man and good talent who had become a great man, and I’m said all the people want to focus on is the negative. He was a 24-year-old kid, a brother and a father who passed away.
Shame on you Michael Wilbon, Len Shapiro and anyone else in the media that is using this tragic event to help your career and to get on television more while misconstruing facts to further stereotypes, assumptions and generalizations about a man you knew nothing about. Shame on you all for murdering Sean Taylor again in the media. I am not a praying man, but I pray for your souls.