witness this

Just when you think it couldn’t get any worse, Art Modell was on a Cleveland TV station telling us all to “deal with it quickly and move on.”  So before I go to bed, here are my random thoughts.

1. I now know another human being that I am morally superior to.  So there’s that.

2. My irrefutable proof for God’s existence just became iron clad, for the Traitor said that “the man upstairs” had helped him with his decision.  And gave him a peace that passes understanding.  Well of course.

3. That makes two basketball players in two days who took less money not to live in Cleveland.  How does a city come back from that?  By the way, I took less money to live in Grand Rapids.  Meadors teaches for the mid-level exception, so I got stuck with the minimum. 

4. My childhood officially ended tonight.

5. On the bright side, I have no reason to watch another NBA or MLB game ever (thanks Indians).  So I have lots more time for the people who  love me.

6. Hey Cubs fans, you have nothing on Cleveland.  Any sports fan who even suggests that they have suffered like a Cleveland fan is too emotionally stunted to feel the depths of human emotion.  We have lived through The Drive, The Fumble, The Shot, The Move, The Closer, The Elbow, and now The Decision/Betrayal. 

7.  When I go to bed tonight, I will thank God that I am not Dan Gilbert.  Gilbert said that “The patience of Cleveland fans will be rewarded,” which can only mean that the team will pass out free chalupas when the Cavs score 60 rather than 100 points.

8.  LeBron had the right to leave, but I think he had a responsibility to stay in his hometown and do something for them that has never been done.  This is a good case study for whether we are social beings who have responsibilities to others (loyalty is one of his tattoos) or if we may do whatever we have the right to do.

9.  LeBron strangely said that winning a championship for Miami would be as significant as winning one for Cleveland.  I couldn’t understand how our native son could say such a thing, but then I realized that the key term is “for.”  LeBron is never going to win a championship for anyone but himself (notice how he repeatedly said that he made the decision for himself and whatever would make him happy).  This makes me think that we are all fools for thinking that we matter at all to these athletes, but they keep up the charade to keep us interested and the money flowing in.

10.  Which would be worse, to have a job in marketing for the Indians or Cavaliers?  The Browns didn’t win a game until late last season, and they are by far our best team now.






13 responses to “witness this”

  1. Jonathan Shelley

    5a) You also have more free time to work on your next book(s) and perhaps round out your Os Guinness collection.

    Speaking of Os, is his family’s stout an acceptable drink for conservative Calvinists (like yourself) given that Art was such a big supporter of missionaries and Sunday schools, and Os is, well, Os? (It’s OK, I know you can’t answer that, but you mentioned Dr. Meadors….)

  2. Dan Jesse

    I’d be surprised if Mike didn’t take up drinking tonight due to this debacle.

  3. Hi Mike,

    I really feel for you and all of the people in Cleveland. I get why people are burning his jersey. This was, definitely, the meanest thing any athlete has ever done to a city. Why did he have to do it on national television? I was a LeBron defender, notice the past tense.

    And I agree, at least Cubs fans have the Bulls and Hawks, and they’re not a tortured fan base, despite never winning. I am FAR more tortured as a Mets fan who is too young to remember the 86 world series.

  4. Leaving wasn’t mean – but announcing it via an over-hyped, prime-time national (no, global) slot was definitely mean.

    I can’t blame him for leaving. He spent 7 years with the Cavs in which the ownership only made half-hearted efforts to give him the supporting cast he needed to win a championship. If Dan Gilbert had made as much effort to give LeBron winning teammates as he did pandering to his off-the-court needs, the city would have at least 3 championships by now. Instead Gilbert put it all on “The King’s” shoulders and just expected it would all work out. After the way Cleveland fans turned on him during game 5 against the Celtics, what did he really owe them anymore? It was clear they would love him only for what he could bring them.

    While you would never hear LeBron say this (because I’m assuming he does have SOME class), I’m sure that at the end of the day his decision was, “Do I leave Cleveland because it’s what I want, or do I stay in Cleveland because I’ll feel guilty if I don’t?”

    Personally, I wouldn’t have made the choice out of guilt either.

  5. Jonathan Shelley

    As bad as it may be for LeBron to use the media circus to announce his decision and “blame” God for it, at least HE made an announcement before the start of training camps and such, unlike my one-time hero Barry Sanders. I can understand why Barry wanted to leave the Lions, but the way he did it… not cool. It was a real eye-opener to me about how one selfish, immature act can undo a lifetime of class and dignity. Now I’m not defending anything LeBron said or did in his announcement, and I’m not trying to take away from Mike’s angst as a Cleveland fan, but I do think there is a lesson here about the importance of reading “Decision Making God’s Way” before bailing on a pro-sports team. (At least LeBron didn’t announce that he made his decision after reading DeYoung’s “Just Do Something.”)

  6. Rod

    Professional athletes’ “it’s all about me” attitude is precisely why I no longer pay attention to MLB, the NBA, or the NFL.

  7. I don’t understand how Cavs fans can be saying he doesn’t have loyalty. I didn’t see any Cavs fans worried about Izzo’s loyalty when Gilbert tried to get him to leave MSU. If Izzo had signed, Cavs fans would have been dancing in the streets David style. In fact, when he didn’t leave, some Cavs fans blasted him.
    There’s a word for that.

  8. mike wittmer


    I wanted Izzo to stay, but God has cursed Cleveland sports for a reason, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they aren’t morally pure.

  9. Jon

    LeBron deserves all the trash he gets from Cleveland fans. If he really wanted too, he could have led the Cavs to the Championship but instead he decides to goof off in the playoffs and then leaves to join an all-star team in Miami. Then he goes on National TV and slaps all the Cavs fans in the face even after the organization overspent to give LeBron a supporting cast to win the Championship and keep him in Cleveland. His ego and “it’s all about me” attitude is what is making all the Cleveland fans mad. If you’re going to leave, then leave and do a local press conference in the town you’re going to instead of making his decision into an hour long TV special just to boost his ego.

  10. Chuck

    Maybe God hates and has cursed Cleveland Sports because he loves Cleveland’s people, and in his terrifying jealousy, he is graciously denying them worship of those Tattooed Titans. Now if the Scripps 2010 National Spelling Bee Champion leaves for Harvard or Yale, never to return, THAT, would be of great concern.
    This deeply troubles me, for if the theory is correct, then perhaps he might recall his theologians as well. Dear God, we moderately thank you for keeping Izzo, but we NEED the Thursday evening Bible Classes at GTS.
    By the way this Dr. Meadors guy sounds like an interesting fellow. What would it take to get him to do a Thursday evening class some fall? Guinness? More money?

  11. Chuck

    Sorry that’s GRTS.

  12. Yooper


  13. Tyler Wittman

    His mother’s advice was about as hideous as the audio/visual diarrhea that ESPN forced upon us.

    She told him he was the only person who had to live with his decisions. I’ve heard of solipsists, but rarely have I heard of someone who believes in, and encourages, the solipsism of someone else.

    We may want to be nice to him. Because if he goes, we all go.

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