Onside kicks

Emmett C. Burns Jr., a delegate to the Maryland General Assembly, borrowed that institution’s letterhead to write a nastygram to Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti [pdf]:

As a Delegate to the Maryland General Assembly and a Baltimore Ravens Football fan, I find it inconceivable that one of your players, Mr. Brendon Ayanbadejo, would publicly endorse Same-Sex marriage, specifically, as a Raven Football player. Many of my constituents and your football supporters are appalled and aghast that a member of the Ravens Football Team would step into this controversial divide and try to sway public opinion one way or the other.

Well, one way, anyway.

If Bisciotti has responded to Burns, I haven’t seen it yet. Ayanbadejo, for his part, responded politely. Meanwhile, Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe responded, um, a bit less politely:

As I suspect you have not read the Constitution, I would like to remind you that the very first, the VERY FIRST Amendment in this founding document deals with the freedom of speech, particularly the abridgment of said freedom. By using your position as an elected official (when referring to your constituents so as to implicitly threaten the Ravens organization) to state that the Ravens should “inhibit such expressions from your employees,” more specifically Brendon Ayanbadejo, not only are you clearly violating the First Amendment, you also come across as a narcissistic fromunda stain. What on earth would possess you to be so mind-boggingly stupid? It baffles me that a man such as yourself, a man who relies on that same First Amendment to pursue your own religious studies without fear of persecution from the state, could somehow justify stifling another person’s right to speech. To call that hypocritical would be to do a disservice to the word. Mindfucking obscenely hypocritical starts to approach it a little bit.

I am awed by that phrase “narcissistic fromunda stain.”

(Via Language Log.)



  1. fillyjonk »

    19 September 2012 · 7:22 am


    “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

    How did we manage to get so many representatives who are so clueless about how life actually works?

  2. CGHill »

    19 September 2012 · 7:24 am

    If they had clues, they’d have real jobs.

  3. fillyjonk »

    19 September 2012 · 7:44 am

    Oh, so it’s some kind of giant Keep Them Off The Streets program, then.

  4. JT »

    19 September 2012 · 9:00 am

    I hereby award Chris Kluwe one Internet for his insightful smackdown of the aptly named (by sheer coincidence of birth to his parents) Mr Burns.

  5. Jeff Brokaw »

    19 September 2012 · 10:53 am

    Mmmm, I’m not so sure that Kluwe has the high ground here. Are we really sure that the politician is making a threatening overture (to invoke governmental power) just by noting his and his constituents’ displeasure over a controversial public statement? Where is the threat of government censure? I didn’t read the source documents, so if there is such a threat, my argument goes away, case closed. Otherwise, to me it seems like all three parties are exercising their right to free speech, free from threat of government persecution – which is how it should be. Freedom of speech does not mean freedom from criticism.

  6. CGHill »

    19 September 2012 · 11:09 am

    Said Burns to Bisciotti:

    “I am requesting that you take the necessary action, as a National Football Franchise Owner, to inhibit such expressions from your employee and that he be ordered to cease and desist such injurious actions.”

    Which stops short, I think, of being a governmental threat, though it’s not hard to imagine that such might be waiting in the wings.

    And anyway, I was more interested in Kluwe’s terminology than his actual stance.

  7. Jeff Brokaw »

    19 September 2012 · 1:49 pm

    OK, yeah, that might be a little over the line. I’ll concede the point. Sorry about the “too lazy to click it and read it myself” part. ;-)

    And I agree, that phrase is a good one, “narcissistic fromunda stain”, and I’m not even sure what it means! Kluwe seems like a pretty interesting fellow, I remember hearing about him last year taking a stance on something, can’t remember what now though . . .

  8. fillyjonk »

    19 September 2012 · 2:49 pm

    I’m afraid to Google “fromunda” though I know not what it means. I can guess, though. And I ain’t Googling that, especially not at work.

  9. XRay »

    19 September 2012 · 10:49 pm

    The whole thing fails on ‘stance’.

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