Nasty Tennis Player’s ‘Anger’… Just Like Joe Wilson?

-By Warner Todd Huston

It was bound to happen, but it might have been the Orlando Sentinel’s TV reviewer Hal Boedeker that was first out of the gate to compare the obscenity laden tirade disgorged at a tennis match by Serena Williams to the no more than annoyed outburst of “you lied” from Representative Joe Wilson during President Obama’s healthcare speech.

Apparently, according to Sentinel columnist Boedeker, there is no difference to pointing out that a liar is lying, as Wilson did, and losing one’s mind in a petulant, childish explosion of anger, as Williams did. In fact, Boedeker didn’t just compare Wilson to the diva tennis player but he lumped Fox News, Tea Party attendees and Glenn Beck into the mix just for good measure. They are all “angry” according to Boedeker.

After comparing Williams tirade to Rep. Wilson, , Boedeker went on to claim that the “fury” of the Tea Party goers won’t help anything, then he chided Rep. Wilson for raising funds as a result of the incident last Wednesday, hit at Glenn Beck and Fox News, and on and on it went. It was one extended attack on everything conservative.

Of course, one wonders if Mr. Boedeker ever called the anti-war movement on its useless “fury,” or called out Nancy Pelosi for saying that anyone that disagreed with her is “un-American”?

We can guess that likely he hasn’t. After all with all his finger pointing, in a piece where he tries to set himself up as the reasonable one castigating those “angry” conservatives out there, he can’t seem to find examples of where anyone on the left exhibits this same sort of “anger.”

If Mr. Boedeker was so upset at the low form of political discourse, wouldn’t you think he’d be displeased with Pelosi’s name-calling, or perhaps the nearly psychotic behavior of folks like Keith Olbermann? Wouldn’t you think that Mr. Boedeker would raise an eyebrow at the nutty behavior of Cynthia McKinney, or Representative Jan Schakowsky? Shouldn’t Boedeker be a tad upset that Senator Dick Durbin called our troops Nazis, or shocked that Senator John Kerry said that those same troops marauded through the night “terrorizing women and children” in Iraq?

Wouldn’t you think that Boedeker would find it apropos to raise an eyebrow at the Old Media, of which he is a part, constantly calling Tea Party goers “tea baggers” knowing full well of the dirty connotation that the label has?

Boedeker did at least give us a line from the profane Bill Maher. Unfortunately, it isn’t clear at all what he feels about Maher’s words. Boedeker doesn’t tsk Maher nor moan at his rhetoric, he just lists the quote as one of the “range of reactions” that represents “the sharpest attack.” Did he think Maher was over the top or wrong for his outburst? Boedeker doesn’t really say. He leaves it wholly unclear. It is hard to understand the point of the Maher quote unless it was thrown in as an effort to appear non-partisan in his piece. The result is unsatisfactory for balance, for sure.

In the end, it seems clear that “anger” and the low character of today’s political debate is not what vexes Mr. Boedeker. If it did he’d have at least one example of the left’s indulging the same methods and would have come out clearly against such. No, what seems to vex Mr. Boedeker is the conservative side of the aisle. Apparently conservatives are just wrong and Boedeker will use any meme to promulgate that idea. Sadly, it appears that his inapt comparison of the foul-mouthed tennis star to all of America’s conservatives simply served as Bodeker’s vehicle to attack the right.
Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as,,,,,, Human Events Magazine,, and the New Media Journal, among many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs to discuss his opinion editorials and current events and is currently the co-host of “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Conservatism” heard on BlogTalkRadio. Warner is also the editor of the Cook County Page for

He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the new book “Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture” which can be purchased on He is also the owner and operator of Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions : EMAIL Warner Todd Huston

Fair Use: This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. I am making such material available in my efforts to advance understanding of political, human rights, economic, democracy, and social justice issues, etc. I believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research, educational, or satirical purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site/blog for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

Copyright Publius Forum 2001