Miss Alabama, toothsome and refined
January 12, 2013 2 Comments
Here is a brief recap of the story: During the Alabama-Notre Dame championship game Monday night, ESPN’s cameras zoomed in on Katherine Webb, a 23-year-old former Miss Alabama who happens to be the girlfriend of AJ McCarron, the Crimson Tide’s quarterback. Miss Webb is a singularly attractive young woman, and Brent Musburger, the game’s commentator, said so. He called her “beautiful,” and said she is a “lovely lady.” His remarks were neither offensive nor inappropriate.
Yet, a few among us were traumatized by Musburger’s remarks. Sue Carter, a professor of journalism at Michigan State, opined as follows: “It’s extraordinarily inappropriate to focus on an individual’s looks….It’s so retrograde that it’s embarrassing. I think there’s a generational issue, but it’s incumbent on people practicing in these eras [sic] to keep up and this is not a norm.”
Actually, men noticing and commenting upon attractive women is a norm. (For reasons astute readers might decipher, Miss Carter is unaware of this particular norm.) I have spoken to several men about Miss Webb, and they all agree that she is uncommonly appealing. Some even uttered profane, highly inappropriate remarks about Webb, but this was not surprising: men often make vulgar, sexually graphic comments about good-looking women. (Fortunately, Miss Carter was not within earshot.) Musburger said nothing of the sort Monday night.
I have also spoken to my wife, and to several female coworkers, about the episode. Not one of them believes Musburger’s remarks were inappropriate or offensive. Then again, my female “focus group” is not comprised of journalists, college professors, and feminists.
According to Jennifer Greer, chairwoman (chairperson? chair?) of the journalism department at Alabama, football “is a male domain. And the role that women play even in the journalistic respect is in the supporting role—the mom, the hot girlfriend, the sideline reporter.” If Katherine Webb played middle linebacker for the Crimson Tide, the likes of Miss Greer would complain that there aren’t enough female coaches in college football. She would insist upon “gender equity” among not only players, but also coaches, athletic directors, and university presidents.
Even ESPN, the alleged testosterone-driven sanctuary for men, was rendered limp in the wrist and weak in the knee by the shrieking of maniacal feminists. The network issued a pathetic, groveling apology for Musburger’s remarks. ESPN should apologize for apologizing. And replay Musburger’s remarks every 15 minutes (with video footage of Webb), simply to provoke journalists and college professors.
Perhaps the indignant among us should consider Katherine Webb’s reaction. She, after all, was the “objectified victim” of Musburger’s “creepy” remarks. To the dismay of the feminist sisterhood, Miss Webb has declined to declare herself a victim of patriarchy. She is not only superficially attractive, but also endowed with class and elegance. Webb was not in the least offended by Musburger’s remarks; in fact, she was “flattered” by them (http://www.yardbarker.com/college_football/articles/msn/katherine_webb_says_shes_flattered_by_musburgers_comments_on_today/12614596). She does not believe ESPN’s apology was necessary.
Dignity and common sense from a 23-year-old beauty queen; malodorous nonsense from journalists and college professors. There is no irony here. This is precisely what we’ve come to expect.