Forget Joe Wilson; I Stand With Serena Williams

By Channing Kennedy Sep 16, 2009

Serena Williams has been fined for an outburst during a U.S. Open semi-finals match, but the press is still churning about it, or, more specifically, about whether she’s apologized enough. If only she’d yelled at the President, instead of at a line referee — she could have raised $1.5 million and gotten Max Baucus to add unnecessary and dangerous provisions to his healthcare bill! From Kate Harding at Salon:

[The L.A. Times’ Bill] Dwyre adds, "It was an embarrassment to a sport that has made good strides recently in expanding its niche. The U.S Tennis Assn. loves to talk about its ‘grass-roots’ programs, geared to getting rackets into young players’ hands. Now those young hands have a role model for racket-smashing and bad language." Hmm, do you suppose we’d be talking about the potential effect of this on the grass-roots programs — aimed at inner-city children from low-income families — if it had been [opponent Kim] Clijsters, or a white man who went on a brief tirade?

From the never-not-required-reading Shark-Fu, at Feministing:

Just once…just once, damn it…I’d like to be able to read an article about something a black athlete does without being subjected to a deluge of ig’nant as hell racist comments trying to use an individual’s behavior as proof that ALL black people are inferior beasts who should be kept locked up. Just once…I can’t even imagine it…I’d like to be able to read an article like other folks got to read articles about Jimmy Connors – the facts, the opinions and the response minus the absolute statements about ALL black people (well, in Connor’s case it would have been ALL white people) blowing up unreasonably at a bad call, not being able to properly express their anger and generally being dangerous bad sports who should be banned from the court.

Katy Kelleher at Jezebel breaks down the ‘all-American’ appeal of the Williams sisters’ up-and-coming opponents, quoting commenter ‘heykoukla’:

What a shame the Williams sisters don’t have a rags-to-riches backstory. You know, like growing up in a poor neighbourhood and being coached by a father who had zero experience of their sport, and fighting their way to success against the odds. Yep, that would have made a great story and endeared them to the public, right?

What I really want to know is, who’s going to start the I Stand With Serena Facebook fanpage, to counter all these I Stand With Joe Wilson ads I keep seeing? I’d vote for Williams over Wilson in a heartbeat. At least she doesn’t falsely claim to have been an immigration lawyer during her apologies.