What Kind of David Brooks Hater Are You?

After reading David Brooks' "The Jeremy Lin Problem" this morning, it seemed as though our Twitter feed instantly sparkled with little nuggets of dissent—so many in fact that we put together this guide to David Brooks haters.

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After reading David Brooks' "The Jeremy Lin Problem" this morning, it seemed as though our Twitter feed instantly sparkled with little nuggets of dissent —so many in fact that we put together this guide to David Brooks haters. As a New York Times Op-Ed columnist, Brooks did his job: find a newsworthy topic, wax poetic, and connect it to a larger general picture. The problem, as the Twitterverse will point out, is that Brooks wrote about Lin being an anomaly for being a religious athlete (which if you've ever seen athletes dunk, score and rain down three-pointers you'll know that Jesus is totally a sports fan) and then wrote ... you know what, we'll let his haters explain.

Are You ....

A Sports Fan? Yes.
Familiar with Jeremy Lin? Of Course. He's the Asian-American point guard who just dropped 13 dimes in 26 minutes last night, and torched Kobe and company for a career-high 38 (though it's not surprising since Derek Fisher can't guard an empty chair).
High Brow or Low Brow? High

Then You'll Love: The Atlantic's Ta-Nehisi Coates's Column, "Please Stop Using Jeremy Lin To Illustrate Your Pet Theories"

You probably already know this since you follow Coates on Twitter (and you should if you aren't), but Coates was one of the first ones to tweet his anger with Brooks' column this morning and has been giving us eloquent arguments about using Lin's rise to stardom to talk about race. "I think if you weren't writing about sports before, you shouldn't start with Lin. It will be really hard to not say something regrettable," Coates tweeted in a Twitter obliteration of Brooks's column this morning. His article up on The Atlantic dissects Brooks' column further, pointing out that Brooks is using Lin to spread off-base theories about religion. "I don't really see why sports is any more in 'tension' with the 'moral ethos of faith' than a great variety of other human endeavors," Coates wrote.  "I'm not even sure that it is."  He adds (fair warning you will need to be a sports fan to know what any of the next few names mean):

And if we agree that Lin is, in fact, not an anomaly, then why are we talking about this now? Why not with Tony Dungy? Or Charlie Ward? Or Kareem-Abdul Jabbar? Why now?

A Sports Fan? Kinda.
Familiar with Jeremy Lin? Yes, of course. I live in New York. 
High Brow or Low Brow? High, but I don't mind a little snark and fiction here and there.

Then You'll Love: Salon's Alex Pareene's column, "David Brooks: “I have heard of Jeremy Lin”

"David Brooks had to write a column about something, and his deadline was fast approaching, so he glanced at the sports page and saw something about New York Knicks phenom Jeremy Lin, and he was like, yeah, that works. Next stop, most-emailed list!," opens Pareene's column that's as much an exercise in very-believable literary theory as it is a thorough plucking of Brooks' argument. Unlike Coates, Pareene goes for a bit more snark here, kindly blaming Brooks' poor column on writer's block and a fast-approaching deadline. "This is the point where you hit 'select all' and then 'delete' and start your column again," writes Pareene, after noting Brooks non-anomaly, adding "The New York Times should probably consider having someone take a quick glance at David Brooks’ columns before they publish them." Ouch.

A Sports Fan? No.
Familiar with Jeremy Lin? Yes, of course. I am a culture junkie.
High Brow or Low Brow? High.

Then You'll Love: The New Yorker's Alex Koppelman's pithy blog post

"How You Know David Brooks Doesn’t Watch Sports" is all Koppelman writes, before letting the first few lines of the Brooks column finish the joke. It's a smirky restrained "in the know" type of insult, and the kind of insult that strikes the fear in even the most hard-hearted of writers.

A Sports Fan? Doesn't matter.
Familiar with Jeremy Lin? Doesn't matter. I just hate David Brooks.
High Brow or Low Brow? See Above.

Then You'll Love: Amanda Marcotte.

A Sports Fan? Yes.
Familiar with Jeremy Lin? Obviously.
High Brow or Low Brow? Low.

Then You'll Love: SB Nation's Spencer Hall's "The Worst Column Written About Sports Ever Published"

"I don't know if New York Times columnist David Brooks is an alien life form," ponders Hall, who concludes that the New York Times editors along with brooks must be for allowing such a ham-fisted article even see the page. "This is akin to crashing a broken tricycle into a vat of toxic waste going uphill past signs warning you about the very stupid thing you are about to do," writes Hall describing Brooks's column. Hall eventually gets past the colorful imagery to elegantly describe Brooks' problem--block quotes and connecting a Lin quote with a Jewish theologian--which is yes, clunky.  His conclusion? "There is no 'problem' with Jeremy Lin. David Brooks is an alien, and not a particularly bright or humble one."

A Sports Fan? Yes.
Familiar with Jeremy Lin? Obviously.
High Brow or Low Brow? Low and the shorter the better.

Then You'll Love: Twitter.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.