A reader offers the following on fans crying "lack of respect" for their favorite sports team:
I think the highest form of this mentality is "I bet you've never played a down of fottball in your life" and various versions of the same. It's especially bad in discussions of MMA.Fan 1: Brock Lesnar rulezFan 2: I think Lesnar is a great athlete, but he is unproven.Fan 1: I bet you never fought in your life you have no clue what you're talking aboutAnd so on. It's a conversation-stopper of the same form as the often-legitimate "you're not [race/gender/class/ethnicity], you can't understand," except that it is almost always used by people who have also never coached in the NFL, fought Brock Lesnar, or tried to stop Alexander Ovechkin.It's also the same argument as "you can't criticize the war, my brother is a Marine." Of course, the rule that one cannot have a worthwhile view of something they have not done personally is almost never used in a political argument, unless it involves soldiers or cops.
We have, it is clear, reached the lively dead end of a process that was initiated by a fretful Martin Scorsese and inflamed, with less embarrassed glee, by Tarantino: the process of knowing everything about violence and nothing about suffering.