The New York Times Refusing To Inform Its Readers What Meyers Leonard Was Suspended For Saying Is Far More Unethical Than Leonard Saying It [Corrected]

This is beyond crazy. I’ll play the “Bridge Over The River Kwai” clip…

…but it’s not sufficient. How crazy is this story? This crazy: Ethics Alarms is informing you of a critical fact in a news story that The New York Times and almost every other mainstream media news source will not. Here it is:

The anti-Semitic slur that Miami Heat center Meyers Leonard has been fined and suspended for saying, apparently putting his NBA career in jeopardy, is “kike.” K-I-K-E.

I had to hunt through many reports to find a source that would reveal the taboo word so horrible and vile that to even print it so readers could know WHAT THE HOLY HELL THE CONTROVERSY WAS ABOUT was, apparently, unthinkable. I finally found the word in “The Scotsman,” which, as the name might suggest to you, is a Scottish publication. The closest I found in a U.S. source was an invitation to play “Wheel of Fortune” or “Hangman.” (Can you still play “Hangman”? It requires drawing a noose, and if you draw a noose, you must be a racist.) The exclamation that has made Meyers a pariah, according to the Miami Herald, was “F—ing cowards, don’t f—ing snipe me you f—ing k–e b–ch.” Sorry, not good enough, not sufficient, not competent, not responsible, and not ethical. If the story is worth publishing, then the word at the core of the story must be published too.

The Times wouldn’t even use code. “Meyers Leonard Fined $50,000 and Suspended for Using an Anti-Semitic Slur” reads the headline. [Wait. What slur? ] It continues [the bracketed comments are mine],

Leonard, a reserve center for the N.B.A.’s Miami Heat, said the slur [WHAT SLUR???]while playing a video game on a public livestream. Meyers Leonard, a reserve center for the Miami Heat, has been fined $50,000 and suspended for one week after a viral clip showed him using an anti-Semitic slur [When are you politically correct, cowardly, virtue-signalling journalist hacks going to tell me what you are talking about?} while playing a video game on a public livestream.

“Meyers Leonard’s comment [What comment? Nobody will say what the comment was!!!] was inexcusable and hurtful and such an offensive term [How do we know how offensive the comment is if YOU WON’T TELL US THE WORD?] has no place in the N.B.A. or in our society,” Adam Silver, the N.B.A. commissioner, said in a statement announcing the punishments. “Yesterday, he spoke to representatives of the Anti-Defamation League to better understand the impact of his words [That’s great, but WE can’t understand the impact of his words because you assholes won’t say WHAT THE WORDS WERE!!!] and we accept that he is genuinely remorseful.”

The statement continued, “We have further communicated to Meyers that derogatory comments like this [ LIKE WHAT? You can’t say “like this” without explaining what “this” is!] will not be tolerated and that he will be expected to uphold the core values of our league — equality, tolerance, inclusion and respect — at all times moving forward.”

Leonard, a 29-year-old gaming aficionado, was playing “Call of Duty: Warzone,” a popular multiplayer video game, on Twitch, a livestreaming platform, when he said the slur. [ But we still don’t know what slur, though you do…] He also said a sexist vulgarity [Really? Which one? Is this a guessing game? I thought it was SUPPOSED TO BE A NEWS STORY!!!] in his comment [What comment?], after another player tried to kill his character in the game. The video was recorded Monday, but the clip did not spread on social media until Tuesday….

There is no excuse for this.

The Times is deliberately withholding crucial information essential to a reader being able to understand the story. By doing so, it is directly endorsing the anti-free speech actions taken by various universities—and of course The Times itself—by doing its job as if there is something wrong about using a slur or epithet to discuss the slur or epithet, so wrong that it mandates not performing one’s profession competently. Well, that’s utter bullshit, or as the Maimi Herald would say, “b—s–t.” Who, What, When, Where—those are the crucial elements of news reporting. The Times and others are withholding the crucial “What” just to prove they are good little woke soldiers.

In doing so, they are assisting in the deliberate erosion of free speech, and, by extension, democracy itself. Poor Meyers Leonard just stupidly forgot that he was playing a video game on a public platform. His outburst was meaningless.

Meaningless, that is, as any kind of a real injury to anyone or anything. “A big, mean, white basketball player used ‘kike’ while playing a video game! I am horribly injured and wounded!” Is there any Jew on earth who can say this with a straight face? History has imbued that population with far sterner stuff.

No, all Meyers did was give activists a chance to take center stage by pretending this was a major incident, and the news media a chance to prove how progressive they are by blowing the story wildly out of proportion. Stories like this one in Forbes are also popping up, as pundits just can’t help themselves: “Why Is Anti-Semitism Still Cool? What Meyers Leonard’s Slur Says About Attitudes Today.”

Got that? What the excited, thoughtless exclamations from a lug playing a kids’ video game says about our attitudes…which is nothing.

The NBA fined the Heat player $50,000. He makes about 100 times what I do, not counting endorsements, so his fine is like a $500 fine to me, or less than what I recently paid a copyright owner for inadvertently using a graphic without permission. The fine is fine, because the NBA players are the NBA’s product, and all players have to mind their public image on and off the court. Still, this was a personal, non basketball activity, and not an intentional bigoted attack. The suspension, however, may cost Meyer millions—-for spewing expletives in the heat of a video game, all so the Heat and the NBA can show how woke they are—again. Maybe the JDL should demand that the league mandate that “Jewish Lives Matter” be plastered all over the courts. Silver would probably do it.

This doesn’t mean that Meyer is less of an ethics-challenged dolt. His tweeted apology was particularly annoying:

He obviously knew the word was an insult to Jewish people, so he knew it was a slur and that’s enough. He’s lying. He doesn’t need to know what the word “means” other than that it is used to denigrate Jews. The various pundits who are attacking him for saying he didn’t know what the word means probably don’t really know what “kike” means either. Do you know what the word means? Nobody is certain, it seems.

The origins of the word are disputed. One theory posed by Philip Cowen, editor of “The American Hebrew,” is that it derives from the Yiddish word kikel, or, circle. The Jewish Times explains: “He suggests that Jewish immigrants, not knowing the Latin alphabet, signed their entry forms with a circle rather than the customary X, which signified Christianity. On this theory, Ellis Island immigration inspectors began calling such people kikels, and the term shortened as time passed.”

Another theory is that the slur derives from “Hayyim,” transcribed in German as Chaim or Kaim, a word to describe Jews found in mid-18th-century German cant. Since Jewish speakers took -im of Kaim as a plural ending in Hebrew, they created a new singular “kai,” and thus “kike.”


The verdict here is that Meyers should be allowed to play basketball, spared all of the whipping by grandstanding censors, and the focus needs to be shifted to the real threat, the news media’s efforts to gut the language so we can only think “good thoughts.”

13 thoughts on “The New York Times Refusing To Inform Its Readers What Meyers Leonard Was Suspended For Saying Is Far More Unethical Than Leonard Saying It [Corrected]

  1. Sorry—this was another post that went up with too many typos. Once again, I was hurrying to get a post up I think was important as other urgent matters were nipping at my heels, and then my plan to get back and fix the post was derailed for more than an hour. My mistake. I think it’s all fixed now (but Other Bill will doubtless find some typos I missed…and I’ll fix them too.

  2. Our 16 year old son plays that stupid online game – though, truth be told, the visual graphics are impressive – and, from what we hear coming from his gaming console, vulgarity is not only allowed but openly required.

    I don’t buy that Leonard didn’t know what “kike” meant but considering the nature of the game and how players treat each other, I am going to give him a pass. His online gaming outbursts are (probably) not a reflection of his beliefs. I don’t know anything about him – and I don’t intend to educate myself – but I suspect he is not an anti-Semitic nutjob looking to start the next Kristallnacht.


  3. I have never heard this word before. Being clearly and unavoidably labeliable as a white guy, I can’t wait until I am not allowed to speak the English language because of some syllabic error gets me cancelled.

    • I’ve heard of the word before somewhere, but I don’t remember where, and while I knew it was a slur, I didn’t know what group the slur applied to. The Wheel of Fortune game they played in the article was not enough of a clue for me to deduce which word they were referring to, so I didn’t know what the bad word was until Jack posted it here.

      • I’m stunned any reader/commenter here wouldn’t know to whom “kike” referred. Maybe the basketball player didn’t know what “kike” meant. Wow.

        This is a problem with language. “Suck” is now acceptable usage by grade schoolers. Not really a good thing. But I think any number of users of the word probably don’t know its “fellatio” meaning or origin.

  4. It’s possible he knew it was a slur but considered it more of a general-purpose insult than directed specifically at Jews (was it addressed to a Jewish player?)

    I tend to think this refusal to report exactly what was said is less about policing speech than about creating a false equivalence in the minds of the audience, so that the media will be able to write “so-and-so made racist / sexist / homophobic / transphobic remarks” and it be treated as if they used slurs when what they really did was question Woke doctrine. They are presently paving the way for that.

  5. Do we need a new principle for basketball players who say “kike” while playing a video game? Can’t we condemn him for not knowing better, as the GTown adjunct has been “principled?” (Which still irks me, obviously.) The scenarios strike me as completely parallel.

    So the kid is white! I wonder if it would have been a story if he’d been black. Adam Silver calling out a black kid for using “Kike?” I seriously, seriously doubt it. In fact, no way in hell. Fining the kid for just blurting out a word in a video game would have been racist and white supremacist.

  6. The last time I heard the word “kike,” say ’47 or ’48, it was one of the Words (one of the others was “bastard” and the rest even milder) directed at a kid who had hit another one with a “dirty” snowball. The only reason I remember it is that the grownups got into a fight, and my mother kept saying “but he’s not Jewish; I’m sure he’s not Jewish is he?” and I kept saying “He’s not in my class, mom” all the way home. Later that evening, my father gave me my first, or possibly just latest, lecture on Dirty Words, aka Words That Must Never Pass Your Lips and Why. I think he did what most parents do then — go take an aspirin and lie down because the Becauses he gave to the Whys just engendered more Whys (such as being born before your mom and dad got married, so what?) and I went to bed thinking that if “words can never harm me” it’s the dirty snowball that’s worse, isn’t it?

    [p.s. Thanks for reminding me of the “sticks and stones” motto, Jack. It makes as much sense, if not more, as “racist” or “sexist,” etc. in these parlous times. I think I’ll start using it again.] .

    *for those who grew up somewhere like Hawaii, a “dirty snowball” is one in which the snow is packed around a pebble (think about it: if the snowball has to fit in your kid-size hand, there’s no room for much of a stone) or a piece of solid ice. In legitimate school-age snowball fights, it’s considered cheating, and you can wind up in the principal’s office, especially if the other kid cried about it. If grownups do it, it’s considered assault and you can go to jail when you pass GO, or pick up $200, whichever is larger … or something like that.

    • At my college, Freshman year, we shared a floor with two Hawaiian students, and got to know several of their friends from the islands. They all kept calling us “howlies,” which is a derogatory term for “whites.” It took us a while to learn what it meant, but when we did learn, my blonde room mate, 6’5″ and plain spoken, cornered the two Hawaiians and said, as only he could, “If I hear either of you or any of the others call anyone a “howlie” again, I’m going to cram one of you up the other one’s ass. Is that clear?”

      And he would have, too.

      End of problem.

      • Until someone is alerted by the voice from the inserted haole echoing breathlessly from inside: ” ‘Ello! aah … ‘Ello! aah … Anyone-uh ‘ear me?”

  7. So is no woke person or feminist going to address the large, female dog in the room?
    The anti-woman slur so universally used by everyone that no one dares to criticize it, even though objectively it’s just as bad and dehumanizing as whatever forbidden word they’re trying to cancel someone over today?
    If not, then, maybe stop freaking out about language so much?
    It’s all so arbitrary and random. They’re playing Calvinball with people’s lives.

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