Mitch Albom has an excellent column discussing various angles of this one.

  • The media:

    Don’t look now, but cable TV news just wet its pants. The story it prays for every programming day tumbled from the lips of a clean-cut young district attorney Friday afternoon, against a backdrop of the gorgeous Colorado Rockies.

  • Religion:

    How big a news story is this? Well, considering “adultery” and “false witness” are both in the Ten Commandments, you might call it a story of biblical proportions.

  • The lawyering:

    Let’s face it. This is Bill/Monica, O.J./Nicole and Mike Tyson/Desiree Washington all rolled into one. In case you didn’t follow those cases, let me tell you right now what you can expect to hear in the near future. From those who defend Kobe: Hey, he admitted his mistake. It’s a private thing between him and his wife. This girl is a gold digger! What was she doing in his hotel room after midnight? She just met him. She obviously wanted to have sex — and now she wants his money!

    From those who defend the girl: She was only 19! She was probably overwhelmed! These athletes think they can have anything they want! Why did he invite her up? Kobe knew better!

    From those who argue race: Kobe won’t get a fair trial! This is a lily-white town in a lily-white ski resort! They’re trying to destroy Kobe because he’s a successful black superstar! It’s a white woman and a black man! He’s doomed already!

    From those who argue morality: He’s committed a sin against God. Who knows what else he’s capable of?

  • Celebrity:

    Well, obviously, we don’t know him. And because of that, in many ways, Bryant has already been convicted. By polishing a certain reputation and now admitting to another, he has done the one thing the public finds hardest to accept: shatter his image. It doesn’t matter if the image was ever accurate. (How many of you now believe Kobe never did anything like this before?) All that matters is that people swallowed one image, and now they are choking on it.

  • FILED UNDER: Religion, Sports, ,
    James Joyner
    About James Joyner
    James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


    1. Karis says:

      That’s great, glad you found it and passed it on.

    2. Scott Harris says:

      I’ll pass on the media firestorm. I hope Kobe is both innocent and is acquited because of that innocence. But that is mainly because I enjoy watching ESPN Sportscenter during basketball season.

      Just being held up to public scrutiny and derision is already a heavy price he is currently paying for his adultery.

      But if he’s truly guilty of rape, he should pay the price. I cannot bear to watch the lawyers flocking to the TV screens like moths to a flame to endlessly opine about strategy and public relations.

      When the jury comes in, let me know. Without the ability to judge the evidence personally, I’ll opt to trust the “twelve members of his peers.”

    3. Chris says:

      In re: the last point about thinking Kobe had never done this before.

      This weekend, coming back from the lake we had ESPN Radio on and a commentator said, I am paraphrasing, “For single guys out there, from a married guys perspective, you don’t cheat on your wife unless you are demonstratably trading up for a better model whether better looking, richer, whatever and that it what makes his behavior inexplicable. If he raped her, that is criminal, if he merely had sex with her is criminally stupid.”

      I think I agree with this. There are other reasons for cheating, but the guy did have a point.