Those Who Tell Don't Know

By Ta-Nehisi Coates

There's a good convo going on below about my post earlier this week on Ben Roethlisberger. I think the take-away, for me, is that this a post that should have stayed in my head, and off the page. We all have our musings, and the kind of conversation we might have over beers with friends. But That's very different than posting something on the Atlantic's website.


For me the salient facts are as follows: I have no idea what happened, and in such an instance, it's almost never a good idea to start publicly riffing. Rape is a serious accusation, and a kind of crime that presents a specific problem to those who like to bat these kind of things around. I'm not convinced that my contribution to the conversation--absent of any real facts--actually helps anyone, or clarifies anything

Look, I'm a football fan with a particular curiosity about the justice system. This case obviously appeals to my interests. But, on reflection, I don't think I had anything of substance to add. There are limits to living in your own head. Likewise, there are limits your ability to discern between your occasional thoughts and writing with substance. I failed on that count here. 

While we're in full apology mode, I've been informed by a couple people that "Streisand" is actually an old-school homophobic slur. This highlights the importance of only riffing off jokes that you actually understand. My apologies to all. I would change the post's title. But that feels deceptive.

Anyway, I'm leaving comments off. I think that's enough meta analysis and navel-gazing for one day. Let's not make worse.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/personal/archive/2010/03/those-who-tell-dont-know/37421/