I know that the nature of blogging (and microblogging on Twitter) is to judge. Everyone loves to have their opinion heard…and I’m not different. Sure I can say I don’t judge, but I do. We all do in one way or another, right?
So here I am, ready to judge (or, really, I suppose I’m judging the judgers). Everyone else has written about it so I figured because I’ve written a lot about him in the past, I should mention this ongoing Jerry Remy drama. The Providence Journal printed today what I believe to be the best editorial I’ve read on the RemDawg’s situation with the payoff being in the final paragraph:
It is not something any of us would want to experience. We should resist the temptation to punish parents for the actions of their grown children.
The only thing I absolutely know about this situation is that Jerry Remy and his wife did what they thought was best for their son. Yes, there were many other people affected by the things Jared Remy did, but his parents were focussing on their son. I don’t know how anyone can say with absolute certainty that they would have done things differently. After the fact it’s very easy to say point out all the things that were done wrong but unless you were living the lives of Phoebe and Jerry Remy, you have absolutely no idea what you would have done. As the ProJo editorial points out, many families have to deal with the horrors of having mentally ill relatives or relatives with drug and alcohol addictions. My family is one of them. My family was terrorized by a family member with these issues for many years. More than I care to remember. We didn’t have the high profile that the Remy’s do,though, and, thankfully didn’t have to deal with the tragic outcome that the Remy’s and Martel’s are dealing with. But even the taste that we had makes me know that, outside the Remys, there is no one who knows what went on in that family. For those who think they do and think that they would have handled things very differently than the Remys, it must be nice to be able to make those proclamations from up on high. I can’t be that presumptuous.
I write all of that, to write this. Regardless of what kind of father you think Jerry Remy is, regardless of how responsible you consider him in regard to what his son has done, the man hasn’t broken any laws. He hasn’t done anything with malice and he hasn’t done anything to make his employer fire him. Just like anyone else, he’s a guy trying to continue to make a living. Unfortunately for many out there, he makes that living in public, talking about and often joking about baseball. I truly believe if hearing Jerry Remy be Jerry Remy every night during the Red Sox games makes you think of nothing but what a horrible person his son is then you shouldn’t be watching the games. If you feel the need to share your feelings with NESN, have at it. I personally don’t feel the same way but I understand if others do. What I don’t understand and what I will never understand is the idea being floated around that Jerry Remy is selfish because he wants to continue to make a living doing the only other thing, aside from playing baseball, that he is qualified to do. You might think he’s a poor father, you might even think he’s a bad person, but neither of those things are a reason to fire him or deny him his living.
As I type this, I’ve watched and listened to six innings of the Red Sox/Orioles game and not once have I been taken out of the game upon hearing Remy’s voice. Maybe that’s a malfunction with me (I don’t really think it is). What happened is beyond horrible but as a fan at 7:00 pm all I want to focus on is if the Red Sox are winning – and that’s why I watch NESN. (That and Don and Jerry’s interactions – I admit, even now, they make me happy.) So for a couple of hours (well, in Boston’s case usually three or four hours) I don’t have to care about anything but who is winning the game.
I’m not going to spend the season writing about Remy and defending him to those who are on the anti-Remy boat. Everyone has their own opinion and I’m using this evening to voice mine knowing fully well that many, even some of my friends, don’t agree with me. But I still feel better just getting it off my chest.