Yes, I saw it. ESPN’s Bill Simmons helpfully directed the attention of his nearly 1.3 million Twitter followers to it. ESPN.com included the Thunder in its interactive feature about the greatest players in NBA teams’ histories, and Seattle SuperSonics players were on the list.
Unsurprisingly, bitter Seattle fans flooded the comments section with vitriol directed at the NBA, ESPN, Howard Schultz, David Stern, Clay Bennett and Oklahoma City. Most of the anger was directed at the first five, but of course plenty of people took pot shots at Oklahoma and its people. There were the usual belittling comments referring to OKC as “Hickville USA,” and even the regrettably predictable reference to the 1995 bombing a few blocks away from where Kevin Durant now drops 30 points a night.
Also unsurprising was the presence of some outnumbered Oklahoma City defenders who chose to engage in a back-and-forth with the most vocal and insulting commenters. All of the hateful nonsense on my computer screen got me riled up, as it often does when I see people invoke a mass murder as a way to put a city’s population down. I soon got to work on a column asking Sonics fans to leave the people of Oklahoma City out of it. I was determined to be logical, accommodating (of Seattle’s numerous legitimate gripes), passionate and fair.
But then I got a better idea. The only idea. What I think we all need to do in any debate of this kind, especially about something that won’t be changed and happened years ago.
Ignore it. Resist the temptation to engage them. Especially the ones who can’t spell. Here’s why: Keep Reading…