Tuesday, September 9, 2014

My Opinion. PEACE!: Thanks, Stephen A. Smith

If you didn't know, I am one opinionated chica.  I wrestle with whether or not to include my opinions in this blog.  I've thought about starting another blog and have had this idea for quite some time.  While I work out the kinks and figure out what I'd like to do, I've decided to add some of my opinions here in a series called My Opinion. Peace!  Since this blog is about things relevant to raising my daughter.  I've decided to include this particular opinion hear.  Hopefully, you'll see the relevance, if only indirectly.

At first, I tried to be low key, but after seeing the video, I am even more upset with Stephen A. Smith's words. Actually, not his words, but his one word - provoke. Thinking that maybe he had more insight into what happened, I felt like maybe in this case the woman was inciting her fiance.
We all understood where Stephen A. Smith was going. We all understood his message, but sometimes he's not the most eloquent cat. I've always felt that for the most part intent is more important than what's said- that there is meaning beyond words. So for that, I've always said he may have had a good point, but just included a word that should have been left for exclusion.

PROVOKE (MERRIAM/ WEBSTER): verb \prə-ˈvōk\
: to cause the occurrence of (a feeling or action) : to make (something) happen
: to cause (a person or animal) to become angry, violent, etc.

So what are some of the things that women do that can cause a man to become angry or violent (definiton of provoke)? The answer is it varies with every man who becomes violent toward women. For some men it may be charging and hitting them. For some it might be failing to clean up the house to their satisfaction. "What? I saw you talking to some man at work.? Well this is gonna get you a nice little beating." The actual issues that spark these altercations can vary.
I wished that Stephen A. Smith could have pointed to the specific behaviors that he felt women should avoid, like violence against men. That would have worked in everyone's favor. This is why, to me, Whoopi's statements differ greatly from SAS's.
The one problem that I am now having with the video and Stephen A. Smith is I don't see support for this woman being the aggressor. I do NOT. She doesn't seem scared, but she seems like she's trying to stay away from him. She's walking behind him. He waits for her and then spits on her. She walks ahead of him. He follows her. She turns every attention to those buttons on the elevator ( they can't be that interesting). He's in her face. To me, this man was the one provoking.
In my book Stephen A Smith has apologized.  I'm not angry at him, per se, but those words can never be taken back.  What is a bit shocking to me, is with the release of the video that so many men are now verbally high fiving Mr. Smith for his words, as if he were right all along.

So, thanks Stephen A. Smith. Thanks for reminding us, that it is always the woman's fault. Thanks for making this woman responsible for her own beating. Thanks for helping us to ask the age old question- "What did she do to deserve it?" 


  1. I think he did choose the wrong word, and should have been more specific. With all things, words can and will be interpreted different from each listener. Our experiences play a great role in our interpretations. When he originally made the comment I didn't take it as if he was talking about their case in particular, I assumed that he was saying that there are instances in which women can be the aggressor, and that we should teach girls and women to not put themselves in a situation for a man to have an excuse to hit. I didn't see the video so I have no opinion about their case, but with domestic violence I don't believe anyone deserves to be hit female or male. Adults should be able to communicate with words. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, and being open to dialogue.

  2. I agree that people should not hit each other. I can't say whether SAS meant to implicate that this particular woman was provoking her attack, but even then, I do feel that he should have been more responsible, knowing that while talking about this specific case, such comments infer that she was provoking. Whether he was speaking of this case or not, I do believe that, like a lot of people who noticed that both Ray Rice and his fiancee were arrested and charged with assault, S. Smith probably believed that she was playing the part of Solange in that elevator, else his comments were just misplaced. Either way, I appreciate the dialogue.