Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tell the whole truth

Alice Roosevelt Longworth once said, "If you haven't got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me." I always liked that. What I don't subscribe to is the old saying that you don't speak ill of the dead. Perhaps what I really mean is, you shouldn't lie about the dead to make them seem better than they really were. There were two deaths in the past couple of days that I'll use to illustrate that point. Yesterday came the news that KDKA radio talk show host Fred Honsberger had died. To hear everyone talking about him, you would have thought a saint had gone to his reward. As an occasional listener to Fred's show, I thought he was a lie-spewing, truth-twisting, rude and nasty jackass. He was a leader in coarsening and debasing public discourse in our region. Some might say that it was a personna Fred displayed on his program and that he didn't really believe in everything he was saying. Well, in that case, he was a fraud. Take your pick: jackass or fraud. Then, today, we learned of the death of Cincinnati Bengals receiver and former West Virginia Mountaineer Chris Henry, who was fatally injured when he fell from a pickup truck driven by his girlfriend. For those who don't follow football closely, Henry was a sad excuse for a human being when he played at WVU, and he assembled a rap sheet as long as your arm while with the Bengals. But because he hadn't been arrested recently, everyone's talking about him as a "young man who really turned his life around." Really? The guy died while chasing his girlfriend during a domestic dispute. Sounds like a regular Ward Cleaver. I'm sorry that both these men died, especially at their ages, and I feel for their families and friends, but let's not whitewash reality. And let me make it clear that I want the same honest treatment when I die. Feel free to say that I was sometimes (most of the time?) a horse's ass. I believe strongly in telling the truth. ;-)

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's hard to judge people by their public personas, so who's to say if Fred actually believed what he spouted on the radio? I'd like to think that a sense of decency would keep people from holding jobs that require them to say things they truly don't believe or that seem to be said only to ramp up ratings, but we have Maury Povich and Jerry Springer to offset that belief. I know that Fred was active in the Salvation Army which, despite what you may think of its religious convictions, does make some attempt to help the unfortunate. As Shakespeare said, "The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones." RIP, Fred.

December 17, 2009 at 11:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you Brant, about sinners becoming saints in the press when they die. Of course, Fred's fans would say you're totally wrong because they loved his crudeness and whatever else. I never listened to him but since he was a right-wing mouthpiece I can imagine the lies he did tell. My question is, what's the big mystery illness that killed him?

December 17, 2009 at 1:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh so true and very well said. Another recent death is Oral Roberts. Talk about a real scum bag. A guy who pocketed money meant for flood and disaster victims. A guy who once claimed he saw a 900 ft Jesus, so send money.

Didn't he have a brother named Anal? (stole that from Howard Stern)

December 17, 2009 at 8:10 PM  
Blogger MJ said...

Slim Henry and another football teammate walked into my girlfriend's WVU dorm room and stole her and her roommate's text books. Her roommate was dating one of the other football players, so they knew each other. This was in 2002, and I don't think a lot with Slim changed after the fact. However, it seemed like he was beginning to turn his life around, and any time a life it lost, it's a sad story.

December 17, 2009 at 10:16 PM  
Blogger Lori said...

I was curious about Henry when I read how it happened. It was like that was a normal occurrence with him and his girlfriend. Public figures should be held to the same standards or higher as us common folk. Illegal is illegal no matter how much money you make.
I'll make sure I add that you were my "favorite" horses ass. I really do appreciate you keeping me on my toes about what I believe. Even when you twist it to fit in a box I don't deserve to be in.

December 18, 2009 at 1:21 AM  
Blogger PRIguy said...

I don't know about Honsberger...never heard him since I live in Richmond. However this Chris Henry thing has got my bloomers in a bunch.

He was arrested five times. Drugs, assault, whatever. He was suspended from the Bengals frequently. In fact, I never heard of the guy until he was listed among the other criminals who played for the Bengals. In short, the guy was a nothing more than a street thug with a gift.

But that doesn't stop everyone from deifying this moron. Marvin Lewis called him a "beacon of hope." Please. Let's not forget that he died in the middle of a domestic fight that apparently had gotten heated enough that the woman felt compelled to flee the scene. Some beacon. Two days ago, I looked up Henry on Wikipedia. Rich Rodriguez, his former WVU coach, once stated that he was "an embarrassment to himself and the program" at WVU for his conduct after a game at the school. Yesterday, the same man said that "he will always have a special place in his heart." Again, I have to go back to the fact that his fiance was frightened enough to flee the scene.

Did anyone see Chad Ochocinco talking to the press? He wore a #15 jersey in practice. Later he talked to the media...a simpering, whimpering, sickening performance where he tried to sound like he was crying but his eyes were as dry and bright as could be. What a dick.

I am sick and tired of the way these animals are worshiped after they die. The same thing happened when Sean Taylor was killed. Sure, I guess Henry was making some progress, but again, there's that terrified fiance. I'm sorry for the family's loss, but to me, he's just another dead thug who was too damn stupid to appreciate his talent and the life he was given.

December 18, 2009 at 7:33 PM  
Blogger Dale Lolley said...

I don't know how you can compare Henry and Sean Taylor. Taylor wasn't arrested a half dozen times or suspended by his college team a bunch of times.
He was murdered in his home by some Chris Henry-like thugs who came to steal.
Of course I wouldn't compare Henry and Honsberger, either.

December 18, 2009 at 7:55 PM  
Blogger PRIguy said...

Scroll down to "Controversies." Taylor might not have been as bad as Henry, but he sure wasn't the humble, tender man he was made out to be after he was shot.

December 18, 2009 at 10:12 PM  
Blogger MJ said...

Dale, I disagree with you on the Taylor thing. He might not have been arrested as often, but I would say brandishing a handgun and pistol whipping another person is worse than anything Henry did.

December 19, 2009 at 12:39 PM  
Blogger Dale Lolley said...

There was gunplay involved in some of Henry's offenses as well.
Taylor was also not convicted of anything. Henry was, what, a five or six-time convicted loser who died in a domestic abuse event while chasing his fiance?

Still don't know what that has to do with somebody breaking into Taylor's house to rob him and shooting him dead.

December 19, 2009 at 8:37 PM  
Blogger PRIguy said...

A thug is a thug. These a**holes are handed EVERYTHING and they are too stupid to understand what they have.

December 20, 2009 at 3:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The disdain for people with an open Christian faith (Fred H) knows no end. To include Fred H in the same sweep as Chris Henry makes this assessment loose any value. In an effort to make a connection, the article reveals another attempt to discredit somebody (Fred H) for vendetta reasons. All the other talk about fraud, name-calling, etc. is a thin mask over what the author thinks of this man's beliefs. Nice try, but the author shows no shame with this article after a man dies.

If Mr. H was this bad of a person now, he probably was this way two weeks ago, when he was still on the air. Why wasn't this written when he was alive?

December 20, 2009 at 9:10 PM  
Blogger Brant said...

You must be a master at reading between lines and seeing things that aren't there. I don't recall ever making a single mention of Fred Honsberger's faith. Honsberger made no secret of his conservative views, but he was not one to make religious views the centerpiece of his program. My criticisms of Honsberger focused solely on the way he conducted himself on the air, his outright lying and twisting of the truth to support his views. You need to get another hobby, rather than looking for anti-Christian attacks that don't exist.

December 21, 2009 at 7:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No hobby to find anti-Christian articles. Hobbies take time and effort, and finding the number of anti-Christian articles here is easy, no time. One just appeared a few days ago.

The author may have disagreed with Mr. Honsberger, but a scathing article could have been written two weeks ago, two months ago, two years ago. Waiting until he was dead, and then trying to make a connection with Mr. Henry reaches the bottom of the barrel. Sorry, the veil is too thin not to see through it.

I listened to the radio show rarely. In my work schedule, I am not near a radio, and furthermore, there are other Pittsburgh news and information stations to hear. After his death, those who strongly disagreed with him gave accolades for his work, his fairness, and his homework. Nobody chose to resort to name calling to characterize him, as does this article.

Mr. H was open about his beliefs and nobody could have missed the basis of his statements about his Christian faith. With so many other articles on here talking so negatively about Christians, it is hard for the author to separate himself from those articles. Anybody holding Christian beliefs like those of Mr H are a target for bashing, regardless of the topic. His death set up the topic for this article. It totally unrelated to the death of Mr. Henry.

Maybe other people wrote the previous articles, and the present article was written by a new author. If so, then I am confused. If the same, then the writer doesn't need to be direct for the connection to be so complete.

December 22, 2009 at 9:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is an all new low for this site.

December 23, 2009 at 9:36 AM  
Blogger Brant said...

Wonderful. I love breaking new ground. Would you like to expand on your whining?

December 23, 2009 at 9:50 AM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

To address anonymous's claim that Brant should have been airing his grievances with The Hons Man last month while he was alive:

The point, my friend, is that when these people are alive, no one is conferring Sainthood onto them. If people were fawning over his awesomeness last month, I'm sure there would have been voices of opposition.

Also beside the point... but Brant's post didn't even address Honsberger's religious convictions. In fact, let's play a game... assume for a moment that Fred was an atheist. Guess what? He was STILL "a lie-spewing, truth-twisting, rude and nasty jackass."

He wasn't "a lie-spewing, truth-twisting, rude and nasty jackass" because he was down with Jesus... it was because he spewed lies, twisted truth, was rude, was nasty, and had a long face with cloven hooves.

December 23, 2009 at 11:48 AM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

P.S.--- Henry strikes me as the kind of feller that would plead down a felony, smack his girlfriend around, eat the last slice of pizza... and then score a touch down and take a knee and "kiss it up to Jesus" in the end zone. But for some reason, we're exposing the anti-christian bias of calling a radio-asshat a jerk.

December 23, 2009 at 11:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A writer above wrote above, (quoting)
In fact, let's play a game... assume for a moment that Fred was an atheist. Guess what? He was STILL "a lie-spewing, truth-twisting, rude and nasty jackass."

I don't think anybody needed to wait for Fred to take that position, or any other talk host. If anybody wishes to hear self-proclaimed atheists spewing this stuff, check out the O-R forum. There is plenty of stuff like that over there. The place is a haven for the self-proclaimed atheists who lie, twist, be rude, write nasty stuff. It is a magnet that attracts ones of their own ilk, littered with high-fives, back-slapping and other such encouraging gestures. Truth is a far-reach, where only evil is depicted and good is never defined.

Plenty of this stuff around without KDKA broadcasting. The O-R forum is overflowing with the stuff that the writer talks about. Writers over there love to wallow, cocooned in their own infested bubble. Nobody else need apply for membership as the few have a corner on the market. These folks, self-proclaimed atheists (but not really), are a desperate folk, without a sure hope, having their own gods, searching for meaning and purpose in their own deceived intellectualism. They have every reason to do the kind of spewing the writer discusses above. A sad lot, indeed, but revealing.

December 28, 2009 at 1:38 PM  
Blogger Brant said...

Ah, how I do enjoy non-factual gibberish. First off, what is your problem with atheists? Are you intolerant toward those who don't believe as you do? Would you like to provide examples of "nasty stuff" that I have supposedly spewed on the forum? Good luck with that. All views are welcomed on the forum, as are new members. Just don't expect everyone to agree with your view of the world all the time. And I'm really not sure what you mean when you say "self-proclaimed atheists (but not really)." I can assure you, I'm an atheist. After 51 years on the Earth, I'm very comfortable with my non-belief. Finally, I know that in some circles (teabagging birthers, for example), intellectualism is devalued or even scorned. While I and many others still recognize its value, you are still welcome to be led around like a sheep by the likes of Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck. And it's probably better for you that way. If you think too much, there's always the danger that you might question the underpinnings of your religion.

December 28, 2009 at 3:44 PM  

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