Last Thursday, there was a blood orgy over the corpse of Emanuel Steward as boxing media-types fell all over themselves to get the “scoop” of the trainer’s passing. Even when it became apparent that the family wanted privacy for their last few moments with the man and/or enough time to inform the entire family, these swine, one after another, were “breaking” the story.
Thursday, at about 11:30 AM, Steward’s sister, Diane Steward-Jones, issued the following statement:
“You can tell folks that he is alive and being treated by some of the best experts in the world. The Steward family is dismayed and greatly disheartened and disappointed that during this personally challenging time, people would callously and thoughtlessly run wild with untrue statements in order to garner their ’15 minutes of fame.’
“Where is the moral compass of those seeking to capitalize on this situation? Does anybody take the time to check out the facts anymore?
“Many of those issuing reckless statements have our phone numbers as well as Emanuel’s office number and yet, they haven’t called, just issued statements that are terrorizing Emanuel’s children, siblings and relatives that aren’t able to be here at the hospital.
“SHAME ON THEM! He has feelings and we, his family, have feelings. Consider that and give us our privacy to help our loved ones.”
Yet, the boxing media kept dragging the man’s dying body down the middle of the information superhighway, just so they could be the first to post their overwrought “tributes” to the man and how much they allegedly respected him. Articles would pop up and be yanked down when it became apparent that he had not yet died. Then new articles would spring up to take the place of the old ones. Throughout the day, social media sites were littered with broken links to poorly-crafted obits from websites, both big and small.
“Emanuel Steward was a great man, a true gentleman….Goodbye champ, you will be missed.”
Meanwhile, the family still begged for respect and privacy. So what if Steward’s grand kids have to learn of grandpa’s passing via Facebook status? What’s important is that some guy at Livershot.com can get his fingerprint on the “scoop” and wax poetic about the one time he met “Manny” in an elevator at the Mandalay Bay.
Forget about trying to figure some of these people out or trying to wring some decency from them. They are empty vessels, only interested in being big shots. There was no reason not to wait for a statement from the family. The self-serving swine had no problem violating the body of the man they “admired and respected” in exchange for a few dozen clicks to their site and about $1.25 in ad click money.
Even Thomas Hauser weighed-in from the ivory tower, writing Steward’s eulogy (I assume in a room full of HBO duffel bags and coffee mugs) while the Hall of Fame trainer was still taking his last labored breaths. Hauser would let us know how Emanuel was such a nice guy that he even treated “low-level Internet writers” with respect.
By the Steward family’s own accounts, Emanuel didn’t pass away until about 3 PM. This means that a saddened, stressed Steward family spent an obscene amount of time, the better part of the day, fighting for the dying man’s right to privacy and dignity instead of focusing fully on their last few moments with their loved one.
It was a disgusting display from a disgusting lot of losers, creeps, and professional dupes. As the day passed, the few of us with a half-ounce of decency gathered in a small corner of cyberspace, marveling at the self-serving tributes and general blood lust.
As for me, I couldn’t really write a eulogy for the man when it was finally announced that he had died. I posted quotes and directed readers to other pieces. I just didn’t even want to think about boxing at that point.
If anyone is curious about my disdain for the vast majority of my peers, just look at Thursday. And that was with a man they “admired.”
You can email Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org or watch as he enjoys his status a non-member of boxing’s Fraternal Order of Buffet Divers. Paul is a full member of the Burger King Kids’ Club, a born iconoclast, and an ordained minister in the Universal Life Church.