The Kardashianization of Lamar Odom: A disgraceOctober 27, 2015
If you want to know everything that’s wrong with American pop culture and the media, read this ESPN article. It’s about Lamar Odom, and gives the details about his personal struggles and fall from grace. It cuts a sympathetic view of Odom, and plays his character as a victim to life’s losses and indignation, such as losing two friends, bouncing around the league late in his career, and separating from Khloe.
That’s enough to destroy anyone, and especially someone who has earned maybe $50 million really doing nothing more than being born with a frame that grew to 6-foot-10. The article contends that Odom is the world’s sweetest guy, forced to find solace in a drug-infused, four-day sex binger at some perfectly legal brothel, spending more in 72 hours than the average American family earns in a year. The girls at the ranch can’t say enough good things about him. Former teammate Luke Walton is quoted as saying, “I love this man, he’s as good as it gets.”
No Luke, he’s not as good as it gets, and no amount of Kardashianization can change that fact. As good as it gets are the millions of working Americans who struggle to pay the bills, raise their kids, contend with inevitable losses, and do it with an element of grace and profundity Lamar Odom knew nothing about as he lay there indulging his excesses. As good as it gets are American heroes who work to protect and serve the public, defend our country, and face many more challenges than Lamar Odom’s humiliation over some tabloid headline.
And as good as it gets are journalists who don’t fall for the Kardashian rules that no one should be judged, and instead understand that they not only have a right but a duty to call out the utter obscenity of the situation.
ESPN created an article that fits well with today’s prevailing narrative: All behavior is forgivable, understandable, and acceptable given circumstances. Moral outrage is now a media taboo when it comes to celebrities.
In that respect, it wasn’t Odom who was the worst that it gets, rather, it was the reporting that makes no calls and takes no sides that did the greatest damage to a world open to such wrongful interpretations.