May 24, 2003
Someone, ANYONE, please shut him up!!!!
At first, I just hung my head in shame when I heard about the whole Jayson Blair/New York Times affair. After all, I knew it was only a matter of time before this pathological liar was used as an excuse to discredit the achievements of all manner of people of color. And, having seen the piece that 60 Minutes did on Stephen Glass, an even bigger pathological liar in the employ of The New Republic who now had a book deal, I felt a touch of sadness that this Black guy was probably going to fall into obscurity and poverty while his White counterpart was going to make a chunk of change for committing identical sins.
Well, any sympathy I may have had for my fellow Marylander, Mr. Blair, I am IMMEDIATELY recinding.
At least Stephen Glass owned up to the fact that he was a liar and had deep rooted emotional problems and that he was responsible for his own downfall, no one else.
Jayson Blair, on the other hand, has the nerve to say that the New York Times was oppressing him, so he choose to get back at them by falsifying news reports because there was no other way to strike back.
Excuse me? The same New York Times that gave him, a college dropout, a full-time staff position with arguably the top newspaper in the country? The same New York Times that, despite his rediculous correction rate, continued to show faith in him through promotions and increasingly high profile assignments?
Moreover, Blair tries to draw allusions between himself and DC sniper Lee Malvo as examples of Black Men who cracked under pressure from "The Man". Pardon me, but Lee Malvo was an impressionable 17 year old kid separated from his family and taken under the wing of a deranged, wife-beating, ex-Army sharpshooter. Jayson Blair is a grown-ass man who was constantly handed opportunities he simply had not earned and squandered them all.
Shall we even get into the fact that Blair claims his downward spiral began when he lost a ficticious cousin in the World Trade Center on September 11th?
Yes, he has emotional problems. Yes, he's a drug addict. But PLEASE, take some responsiblity for yourself and then SHUT THE HELL UP before you do any more damage to the community of Black journalists.
God. As if we didn't have enough problems.