“Consider the source”, Jemele Hill said in response to a Barstool Rundown clip that was posted almost 4 years ago talking about Colin Kaepernick and his initial decision to kneel for the National Anthem. This was a clear shot at El Presidente for his controversial Colin Kaepernick take and Jemele Hill trying to paint Pres as a racist and bigot. Jemele, along with the rest of the mob, looked to use out of context clips to get Dave and Barstool to be the next victim of getting “cancelled”.
Note for those looking to cancel: when you come at the King, you best not miss.
From rewatching that 2016 rundown, it seems like Dave had a very Dave Portnoy take about Colin Kaepernick and the day following his initial decision to kneel for the National Anthem. Obviously he couldn’t have known how big of a story this would become. He spoke impulsively, said something stupid, and then figured out the situation and acknowledged his flawed thinking.
What he’s actually said multiple times since then has proven to be a fair and justified position regarding Kaepernick’s Anthem protest. You may disagree with it, but it’s who Dave is, a straight shooter.
On that August 29, 2016 Rundown Dave made what are seen as racist, Islamophobic, and bigoted statements. In a form of defense, he did acknowledge that they were going to be racist before he said it. That clearly doesn’t make these statements okay, and obviously he isn’t defending these statements today. He should’ve known better to actually say those thoughts out loud. They sound even worse when taken out of context.
But, the way he prefaced it was how these were all his initial thoughts without knowing the actual story. He then quickly knew not to act on those first instincts. That, to me, is important. This is because everyone sometimes has crazy thoughts that enter our minds and it’s something we really don’t have control over. Impulse is impulse. It’s the actions we take and what we do about those thoughts that are the important thing. If Dave made legitimately hateful decisions based on that initial thinking then he would deserve everything and anything thrown at him. His actions, however, prove that he took the accepting, liberal approach to this issue.
And of course these initial prefaces and surrounding context weren’t provided but that’s to be expected in any hit piece ever, especially when targeting Barstool. As Dave said on his DDTG Livestream before this even resurfaced, they’ve been trying to cancel him for 2 decades. So, it almost seemed like Dave already had this blog written defending himself and Barstool after Jamele and the mob came hunting.
His points basically exonerate himself and Barstool after yet another attempt to take down the Pirate Ship. Another swing miss, I’d say. One thing Dave has always claimed is that he will go after any race, group, or sex equally in attempt to make jokes and tell it like he thinks it is. Sure, you may disagree with him and find it offensive, but the conversations are almost always made in jest and looking for a laugh. It’s often polarizing, but it’s authentic and what the Stoolies love.
Also, I’ve been a Stoolie since like 2010 and if you’re going to old Barstool, even in 2016, for your news and serious world takes then there’s probably something else you need to take care of in your life. After all, it’s a comedy site.
Going back to his claim, however. Isn’t this way of thinking what the anti-racist ideology is looking for in today’s day and age? Portnoy realized his prejudices and bias when initially seeing the story and then deliberately acted in a way that was opposite of those thoughts. He realized that his brain had a bad line of thinking and used his actual logic and decency to come to a fair stance on the issue. I kinda think that should be applauded. We all have flaws and it’s important to have the self awareness of admitting those faults in order to make good choices and become a better person.
The problem, in this scenario, is that Dave Portnoy is basically the sports version of Kim Kardashian. Him talking this out on the Rundown is just an example of that. He puts his entire life online, so yes, some things he says while constantly being filmed will be dumb and maybe offensive. Especially when taken out of context. But, it’s how he’s made a career and it’s how he’s tried to provide funny, exciting content at Barstool for his millions of fans. It’s this transparency and authenticity that has allowed him to become one of the most loved, powerful people on the internet.
With where we are in today’s world, it’s vital that we learn from our prejudices and acknowledge our biases. It’s when we do this then we can actually act towards treating everyone equally with respect and dignity. So almost in a way, Dave is the most liberal of anyone in this entire situation. He has no agenda other than growing Barstool and improving the “Dave Portnoy Business”.
Dave took this attack in stride and hasn’t even really gone after Jemele Hill to try and go back at her either. He did throw a retweet about a transphobic statement that Hill made in her past, but as of now he’s just proven that he isn’t going to bend the knee to the mob. I’m sure they’ll talk about it somewhat today, but a younger El Pres would have gone straight into the mud with Hill in this twitter war.
Maybe he’ll tell Vindog to meme her to death, but it seems like Dave might just be taking the high road for this one and coming out fairly clean. I respect that move because we need to get past the point of giving this cancel culture mob the time of day. As Dave says, this is people looking to hi-jack a cause that wants to make real change in order to try and take out a person they don’t like. It’s the opposite of progressivism.
It’s gonna take something pretty damning to take out Dave Portnoy, best of luck to those who still think they can give it a try.
Also, for those who don’t know just how good of a guy Dave has been throughout his career, take the time to watch the “Boston Strong” episode of the Barstool Documentary series. It’s powerful stuff and just the tip of the iceberg of some of the philanthropic work that Barstool has done for their community.
Cheers, and Viva La Stool.