This article is going to cause the sharks around JR Giddens to circle. If you haven't read it, and you like JR, and you lack the ability to read critically, you might not want to read it. If you have read it and you don't like JR, this is not the place to come and heap more pain on him, because you can't read critically. Or if you plan to put on your Black Panther glasses like Jason Whitlock did today and compare the man who knifed JR Giddens, Jeremiah Creswell, to Malcom X, well, there might be a special place for you with white halls, chubby nurses and soothing music. Seriously:
Let me make this clear: Jeremiah Creswell isn't an angel. Life without a father, life with little money, life with little direction has turned him cold and defiant.
But his humanity hasn't been erased. His gangster posturing doesn't justify a mob swarming and attacking him. It doesn't mean he's a pathological liar. It doesn't mean he's incapable of experiencing and giving love. His friends praise him for his attentiveness and affection toward his son. Jeremiah's life has no less value than yours or mine. He's capable of change. What crime or immorality has Jeremiah Creswell committed that Malcolm X didn't?> It probably seems odd or farfetched to compare Jeremiah to X. But at one time in his life, the legendary black leader was viewed no differently than Creswell.
Let's see here...Malcolm X was a bit of a hellian...Jeremiah Creswell is a convicted felon and wannabe gangsta...it's perfect. Too bad for Whitlock, whom I generally enjoy, that there have been a hundred million other punk ass kids since Malcolm X who didn't join the Nation of Islam, start a revolution, get assassinated and have an Oliver Stone movie made about them.
There's one reason why this article reads the way it does, and that's because you're hearing one side of the story. Have I any doubt that JR was in the wrong place doing the wrong thing and shares some blame for what happened? None at all.
But this story doesn't make sense. Think about it: 12 men, among them extremely large basketball players are pounding on one tiny guy with "bricks" and "glass" and other "foreign objects". This quote, in particular stands out:
"They were hitting him with bricks and all kinds of foreign objects," Flores said. "And they were doing it from (close) range. There was blood all over him. It was a total annihilation. I was really disappointed."
Creswell was treated with 12 staples for a gash on his head, but that's not bad enough for what is described quite melodramatically, by not one or two but three convicted felons in this article. 10-12 big dudes, among them a convicted attempted murderer, by all accounts all drunk, should have killed Creswell if they were using bricks and bottles how I imagine they would be used in a fight. The human body just isn't made for that sort of punishment.
I knew a guy in high school who got in a drunken fight one night. He and a couple of his buddies started beating on another kid...somebody grabbed a tire iron and before they knew what happened, the kid died. That was three people.
Ten could do a lot more damage. I'm just not buying this story for that and a number of reasons. Don't get me wrong. I would be fine with it if Bill Self booted JR from the team for putting himself in this situation, despite the fact that I like JR a lot. But when all the facts come out, and that may not happen, today's Star account is not the story that will emerge.
I think what will likely happen is that JR will suffer a suspension of perhaps five games, and hopefully he'll have learned a lesson about where not to be and about with whom he should hang. If the story is even partially true, which I suspect it is, Creswell is lucky to be alive, and JR is lucky to be only worried about healing his leg.