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Jeff Pearlman surprised at backlash: “I love Walter Payton”

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Author Jeff Pearlman, whose new biography says Walter Payton abused drugs and cheated on his wife, says he greatly admires Payton and is taken aback by the harsh reaction his book has received among Payton’s friends and fans.

“I love Walter Payton,” Pearlman said on The Dan Patrick Show, via John Mullin of CSNChicago.com. “I love him a million times more now, understanding him as much as I feel like I do, than when I was just some guy, a fan reading love notes to him.”

The reaction in Chicago has been nasty, with Payton’s old coach Mike Ditka leading the charge by saying he’d like to spit on Pearlman. Although Pearlman is no stranger to controversy (he wrote the much-discussed 1999 Sports Illustrated profile of John Rocker), he says he wasn’t quite prepared for the response to his Payton biography, which was excerpted in Sports Illustrated this week.

“It’s been pretty fierce,” Pearlman said. “I’ve never had a backlash like this in my life. It hasn’t been the most fun day in my life.”

But Pearlman insists, despite the protests of many who knew Payton, that he sought to paint a fair and accurate portrait of a man he respects. Pearlman says he talked to Payton’s friends and family and believes that a full reading of the book tells the story of a good man who led a complicated life.

“I guarantee you, when people read the full book, all 460 pages and not just the five in Sports Illustrated, they’ll consider it a very detailed and all-encompassing and very fair look at his life,” Pearlman said.

If nothing else, Pearlman is right that his book should be judged by those who actually read it, and not those like Ditka who would cast aspersions on Pearlman before reading what he wrote.

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74 Responses to “Jeff Pearlman surprised at backlash: “I love Walter Payton””
  1. jacunn2000 says: Sep 30, 2011 12:33 PM

    Pearlman is the National Enquirer of the sports world. Sweetness is gone. Let him rest in peace scumbag.

  2. dukesanuch says: Sep 30, 2011 12:36 PM

    I have a feeling you are going to see a lot of #34 jerseys at Soldier Field on Sunday.

  3. jw731 says: Sep 30, 2011 12:36 PM

    Just let the man Rest in Peace

  4. drmonkeyarmy says: Sep 30, 2011 12:36 PM

    Heaven forbid somebody tell the truth and not engage in the all too common practice of hero worship.

  5. Stiller43 says: Sep 30, 2011 12:36 PM

    As long as what he wrote was accurate and not a fabrication, what’s so wrong with writing these things? Because he’s no longer alive?

    People can’t know the truth about somebody posthumously?

    Payton may have been a wonderful man and a great football player, but why can’t the world know the whole story? (again, assuming these things are true)

  6. torgerl says: Sep 30, 2011 12:37 PM

    Boys Will Be Boys was a great book. I’m sure a lot of the Cowboys didn’t like some of the stuff that was said in that book either but truth is truth. Looking forward to reading this one.

  7. firerosenthalthebastard says: Sep 30, 2011 12:38 PM

    relax Ditka geez…. spit on the guy?

  8. cmb79 says: Sep 30, 2011 12:40 PM

    Judging by the smear campaigns he’s written prior to this, I have a very hard time believing that he is as surprised as he portends to be. Whether or not his sources are correct, or that he wants to be “fair and accurate” is not the issue; the fact that he’s seemingly become the go-to-guy for dragging out the skeletons from moth-balled closets is.

    Maybe I’m just naive, but why do we need these hidden accounts of so many people? I guess it’s just a symptom of society and Perlman’s just astute enough (or ballsy enough, possibly) to cash in on the “need to know.”

  9. polishrod says: Sep 30, 2011 12:40 PM

    Nobody disagrees that Payton was a good man, but to deny that he had his flaws is just wrong.

    People like Ditka and those obsessed with hiding the truth, should just go back to sticking their head in the sand.

    Pearlman is a good reporter and he should be lauded for his brave work here.

  10. Rod says: Sep 30, 2011 12:44 PM

    And what did you think would happen after you wrote a book with a lot of derogatory statements about one of America’s heros of the NFL?

    Books full of controversial statements are not exactly what Walter Payton’s fans want to hear or know! Guaranteed, your book won’t sell enough copies to cover the printing cost.

  11. ttommytom says: Sep 30, 2011 12:45 PM

    If Pearlman is surprised then he is either an idiot or lying. Probably both.

    NFL Man of the Year is named after who?

  12. kevpft says: Sep 30, 2011 12:45 PM

    Some mixed feelings on this, but ultimately I think it does society no good to maintain the fantasy that someone has to be perfect before they can be admirable.

    Everyone is flawed, and until we get rid of the notion that we have to only selectively understand someone – and cover up all the flaws that are inconvenient – we’ll be a bit emotionally crippled as a society.

    Heroes and saints aren’t perfect people. They’re people who do great things. They are flawed people, like the rest of us, who choose to do great things. And that choice doesn’t instantly make them transcend their humanity. It leaves them as messy as they were before. We don’t want to believe this, because we like the notion of transcendence. But it’s an illusion.

  13. crazycane says: Sep 30, 2011 12:48 PM

    polish,

    How the f do you know if it’s true? You sit there saying that everyone should stick their head in the sand. Do you know that the word naive isn’t the English dictionary?

  14. boneyardbuc says: Sep 30, 2011 12:49 PM

    Yeah Pearlman should make an honest living like endorsing erection medication!!!

  15. cav2ya says: Sep 30, 2011 12:51 PM

    look who’s calling the kettle black.. PFT 2 days ago was all over this pearlman guy for tarnishing Paytons image, now PFT is saying that people shouldn’t jump to conclusion until they’ve read the book.
    HYPOCRITES!

    oh, and, Go Eagles!

  16. danospleasanton says: Sep 30, 2011 12:52 PM

    How about some respect for the no longer living? Why is this jackass bringing up the past and tarnishing the name of a legend? I have always felt bad for Sweetness, losing out on scoring in a Superbowl. He had to sit and watch Ditka give his carry to the Fridge. I guess now we know he did all his real scoring OFF the field. Having said that, this “author” is a real turd and should be boycotted. Unfortunately, we live in a society where money drives dirtbags like Jeff Pearlman who love money and are willing to rip a legend for a few bucks.

    So long as they do not need to look a man in the eye or hear it strait from the source… We call that a COWARD where I come from.

  17. jimbobobjr says: Sep 30, 2011 12:53 PM

    “I love Walter Payton (my meal ticket.)

  18. joetoronto says: Sep 30, 2011 12:54 PM

    Screw Pearlman and the horse he rode in on.

  19. rajbais says: Sep 30, 2011 12:57 PM

    I think that people are heavily reacting too, but “Sweetness” looked like a lovable guy!!!

    But, what if these substances caused his liver to fail???

    His liver issues killed him at age 45!!!

  20. boneyardbuc says: Sep 30, 2011 12:58 PM

    crazycane says: Sep 30, 2011 12:48 PM

    polish,

    How the f do you know if it’s true? You sit there saying that everyone should stick their head in the sand. Do you know that the word naive isn’t the English dictionary?
    ===================================

    The word naive isn’t the English dictionary??

    I agree.

  21. realdraftgm says: Sep 30, 2011 12:58 PM

    whatever whoever wrote this article I am sorry now this guy is even worse because he talks of Peyton cheating on his wife again the man is not hear to defend himself. How could you ever prove that anyhow and again this is somewhere you just don’t go like Kobe did with Shaq at least Shaq was alive to defend himself. And truly if you love Walter like you say then you never would of wrote that about him cheating.

  22. mightyleemoon says: Sep 30, 2011 1:03 PM

    Nobody is saying Walter was without flaws. But, what purpose does it serve to shine a light on the negatives in his life after he has already passed and does not have the opportunity to defend himself, if he so chooses.

    It’s a coward’s move to drag someone through the mud posthumously.

  23. metalhead65 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:05 PM

    the reason Ditka and bears fans are pissed is that it was nobody’s business what he did after retired. he spent his career building a reputation as great player and person and now this jerk thinks we need to know every detail about him? no thanks I for one will not be buying let alone reading it.

  24. pleasantsurpriselefty says: Sep 30, 2011 1:18 PM

    A civilized society demands that the truth be told about our icons or role models. What if all the books written about historical figures ignored all their warts? Our view of history would be incomplete and left wanting. I like Ditka a lot but get a grip.

  25. cshearing says: Sep 30, 2011 1:18 PM

    I think the problem here is really that people are very quick to demonize someone with any flaw, such a drug addiction. To hear it about a player they admire and respect? They cannot rationalize the good feelings with the innate disappointment they have for anyone that does “drugs”. I blame the War on Drugs for indoctrinating everyone into thinking that “illegal drugs are bad, but booze and prescription Vicodin is good.”

    Thus, Nancy Reagan is to blame for this whole mess ;)

  26. rudegger says: Sep 30, 2011 1:18 PM

    I think what is being missed here is the fact Walter Peyton was very human. I for one would not think less of him if what the book says is true. I have had numerous injuries throughout my life, broken fingers, broken hands, my right arm has been broken 3 times, I have broken my ankles several times, I broke my pelvis, ripped the ligaments in my knee, and I have permanent damage in my right shoulder. I am only 38 and I am in constant pain. I purposely avoid pills because of the damage to my liver, there are times when the pain is so great however I need to grab for that bottle. I can only guess what the future holds.

    When we talk about Walter Peyton now, we have to realize that this guy damaged his body extensively through football. I think it is sad that he would bring glory to so many, but suffer through the pain of glory alone. Is it believable that he would go hard into painkillers? Was he human?

  27. fissels says: Sep 30, 2011 1:20 PM

    After hearing these revelations I still respect Walter Payton as highly as I always have. He was human. He had challenges just like all of us.

  28. broncobillie says: Sep 30, 2011 1:20 PM

    “But Pearlman insists, despite the protests of many who knew Payton, that he sought to paint a fair and accurate portrait of a man he respects.”

    Liar. All he’s interested in is selling books. Controversy sells, so he’s happy as a clam about the mud he’s raking up, no matter who suffers in the process.

  29. rdssc says: Sep 30, 2011 1:24 PM

    The fact that he is surprised by the backlash shows his lack of understanding of who Walter Payton was and what he means to so many people and a community. I don’t need Jeff Pearlman to drag up crap about a dead guy to show me celebrities with money have marriage problems and that Professional Football players struggle with pain and mental health after football. Screw Pearlman.

  30. ehatem says: Sep 30, 2011 1:26 PM

    How much research could he have done if this reaction is surprising to him? I mean, seriously? All you have to do is go back to where “media” types were dragging the man through the mud because they all just knew he had AIDS when in fact he had that rare liver condition that eventually took his life to see how fans reacted to those in the media even suggesting something negative about the man. And that was when the man was alive. Now that he’s not here to defend himself? Backlash? The man is lucky he wasn’t lynched when he was in Chicago.

  31. rdssc says: Sep 30, 2011 1:27 PM

    If Jeff Pearlman’s intentions were so noble, he should donate the proceeds from this book Walter Payton High School.

  32. str82dvd says: Sep 30, 2011 1:28 PM

    When did Walter Payton turn into MLK with a jheri curl?

  33. kd75 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:28 PM

    So everybody is shocked that a pro athlete abused pain killers, drank a lot and cheated on his wife?

    Really?

    US Presidents have done worse…

  34. fwippel says: Sep 30, 2011 1:29 PM

    Gee Jeff, that’s what happens when you’re so out of touch with reality that you think it’s actually okay to air a man’s dirty laundry to the rest of the world.

    Add to that the fact that this man (Payton) is no longer around to defend himself, and his family stands only to be harmed by your book, but I guess you didn’t care to take that into consideration, huh?

    If you can’t understand how people would be upset by that, than you have no business publishing anything.

  35. dolphindad says: Sep 30, 2011 1:30 PM

    Pearlman should be celebrated not villified. If Walter Payton didn’t want a book written about him, then he shouldnt have been in the NFL. Payton made millions playing the game and from sponsorships afterward, he sold himself to the limelite adn did so happily. Pearlman isn’t tarnishing Paytons legacy, Payton did that himself by doing drugs and these things. so what if Pearlman is doing it for the money. why are you at your job right now? for the betterment of mankind? i doubt it.

  36. drunkenagitator says: Sep 30, 2011 1:30 PM

    It’s a biography of a noteworthy athlete. If someone writes a biography of Elvis, should they leave out the sordid parts because someone who idolized Elvis might not like it? Payton was a human being with flaws, just like anyone else. If you don’t want to read about his flaws, don’t read the book. 90% of the pretentious blowhards screeching and squawking won’t even bother reading it themselves, they’ll just draw idiotic assumptions based on skimming part of an online article about the book.

    The person who deserves scorn here is Mike Ditka, basically an ignorant animal who wants to “spit on” someone who wrote a book about a man he coached 25 years ago. He’s a grown man who acts like a petulant little baby. What an embarrassment.

  37. kd75 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:32 PM

    And as for the Man of The Year Award being named after Sweetness…It WAS given to wife beater Warren Moon one year.

    “Senators don’t have people killed, Michael.”

    “Now who’s being naieve, Kay?”

  38. rdrs68 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:33 PM

    I hope he writes a book about D-Bag Ditka.

  39. richm2256 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:35 PM

    “It’s been pretty fierce,” Pearlman said. “I’ve never had a backlash like this in my life. It hasn’t been the most fun day in my life.”

    —————————————————————-
    That tends to happen when you trash the legacy of a universally loved dead guy.

  40. freewayjim says: Sep 30, 2011 1:39 PM

    We all know that sex and scandal sell big in this country, that being said if what’s in the book is factually true then so be it!

    However, if the content of the book is fabricated or exaggerated in any way then Ditka should kick Pearlman in the nuts after he spits on him.

  41. grogansheroes says: Sep 30, 2011 1:46 PM

    Grow up people. I read that he spent over 800 hours interviewing people that knew Payton. I don’t think he made up stuff to bash Payton. So the guy has flaws, just like everyone. If you think he was some kind of hero because he could play football, then that’s your problem. That he abused pain killers, ate them like candy, undoubtedly contributed to his condition. Abe Lincoln had plenty of flaws, yet he persevered. So there should be no books written about dead people? You people are ignorant. 25= IQ of PFT readers.

  42. richm2256 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:46 PM

    Stiller43 says:
    Sep 30, 2011 12:36 PM
    As long as what he wrote was accurate and not a fabrication, what’s so wrong with writing these things? Because he’s no longer alive?

    People can’t know the truth about somebody posthumously?

    Payton may have been a wonderful man and a great football player, but why can’t the world know the whole story? (again, assuming these things are true)

    —————————————————————
    The reason people can’t know the truth about someone posthumously is because that person isn’t around to defend themselves against crap like this.

    I’ll go one step further …… the poundings these athletes endure, to earn their paychecks by providing entertainment for us fans, must be incredible. If any of them need greater use of pain meds to get through life after football than us “Regular Joe’s” need, I can’t blame them, and find no fault in that.

    Cheating on his wife is a different matter, but he didn’t answer to us on that, he answered to his wife.

    I wonder how squeaky clean Jeff Pearlman is, by the way?

  43. midwestguru says: Sep 30, 2011 1:48 PM

    Assuming he has facts to back up his story I am glad to learn more about the real Walter Payton.

    Were all adults here and realize our heros have their own flaws. Combine that with all the recent research on veterans with all post game issues they are dealing with and the abuse only makes sense.

    Regardless, he was an icon on the field and dealt with a lot of punishment for our enjoyment. Lets not get all wrapped up in how he dealt with the after effects.

  44. cowboydipl0macy says: Sep 30, 2011 1:49 PM

    Football players are not heroes.

    Payton may have been a good, but flawed, man, but he was not a hero.

  45. touchdownroddywhite says: Sep 30, 2011 1:53 PM

    I’m pretty sure writing about somebody’s life and only talking good is an ode. A biography should be all encompassing and I applaud him for telling the whole story(assuming it is all true) instead of going the other route.

  46. jamie54 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:56 PM

    Of course those in the media will support another member of the media who of course say you have to read (= buy$$) the book in order to judge. Heaven forbid you judge someone who writes something bound to be controversial without actually BUYING the book. What is this guy an idiot to think when you have a subject bound to draw a reaction (and therefore that’s why you write it, plus for the $$$), there won’t be people out there with a negative response?

  47. godofwine330 says: Sep 30, 2011 1:58 PM

    2Q + 2Q = 4Q, Mr. Pearlman

  48. nagaswan says: Sep 30, 2011 2:02 PM

    Ditka can drown in a see of spit

  49. atxpatfan says: Sep 30, 2011 2:07 PM

    So Pearlman is basically saying he’s a great guy and a great athlete who also had some (fairly significant) flaws. Ok…big deal…there are worse things! It doesn’t mean his family will love him less or that he shouldn’t be remembered for his incredible accomplishments.

    Do we have to believe that because someone can run fast and jump high, that makes them perfect in every aspect of their lives?

    Besides, the guy lived a life very few people get to experience…with the fame and the money and the adulation. It’s hard to say how anyone would handle that.

  50. purplekoolaid1 says: Sep 30, 2011 2:09 PM

    I’m gonna spit on Ditka. Next…

  51. waxedagain says: Sep 30, 2011 2:12 PM

    It’s fundamentally in bad taste to write scandalous secrets about a dead celebrity when the celebrity was not given the opportunity to respond to the accusations. All this guy is doing is rehashing rumors and gossip without context. Yes, what exactly IS his purpose? One does not have to read a book to read damaging excerpts from it. Only an idiot does not realize that this is the age of Facebook and Twitter where so much damaging info is communicated out of context. Any responsible autheor has to understand the age we live in, and not require others to read his complate book to judge why he attacked a legend no longer with us.

  52. jutts says: Sep 30, 2011 2:14 PM

    Walter Payton was the greatest “Football” player I ever saw play. No one is imune from the tribulations in life. Truth is undeniable.

  53. rmzthefirst says: Sep 30, 2011 2:14 PM

    Qusetion, did he have the Payton families blessing on writing the book and everything he wrote about?

  54. gamingphenom says: Sep 30, 2011 2:15 PM

    drunkenagitator,

    I couldn’t have put it better myself. If you people want to blame anyone for this controversy blame SI who seems to have only printed the negative things that Pearlman wrote. If he wrote a 460 page book I’m sure there are also a lot of good things about Payton in there. Pearlman is just telling a complete story about a famous athlete. There is nothing wrong with that. Would you people rather Pearlman have lied and omitted the negative details of Payton’s life? Or should he not have written a book at all which is what his job consists of?

  55. thebigkahuna23 says: Sep 30, 2011 2:22 PM

    Jeff Pearlman is full of it. You don’t love Walter Payton. You love that you were able to exploit him. Now your name is out there in a way it hasn’t been before. If you really loved the guy you wouldn’t have wrote a tell all when he wasn’t around to defend himself. Regardless if it’s true or not, you just don’t do it.

  56. favreforever says: Sep 30, 2011 2:24 PM

    What the point of being filthy rich if you can’t be filthy?

  57. buckybadger says: Sep 30, 2011 2:35 PM

    People are such tools. They never want the truth to be told, only be told what they want to hear. This is why no one in our country has slightest understanding of history because he would rather believe lies about these figures than the actual truth. We don’t want to go through the trouble of finding out facts, just want to believe what we feel should have been the facts.

  58. richatthelake says: Sep 30, 2011 2:39 PM

    I hope Jarrett & Brittany Payton(Walter’s kids) write a “tell-all” biography about Jeff Pearlman.

  59. tandemunicycle says: Sep 30, 2011 2:45 PM

    Anyone considering Jarrett or Brittany here?

    A son who likely had a hard time undoing himself from his father’s shadow, could never crack the NFL, but carved a niche as a motivational speaker despite it, now has to unnecessarily have issues of his past dredged and convoluted, to form more issues?

    All we have in this world is the meaning we take from it, and Pearlman can’t leave well enough alone. So he goes ahead and steamrolls two living young people who are forced on the defensive, because it’s more important to “bring a man to truth.” Great job. You’re a saint and now a martyr. Your tongue is boring a hole through your cheek when you act surprised by the backlash.

    If you don’t have the human instinct to have sensed the hatred, then you have no right to define one by writing a book. You are scum, and by acting “awe shucks” you have gone from spitting on a grave to defecating on one. I’m not a Bears fan or old enough to remember Payton play, but unfortunately I’ll remember you.

    Congratulations on finding your meaning, JP.

  60. blueintown says: Sep 30, 2011 3:01 PM

    Let’s cool it with the “let Sweetness rest in peace” talk. Do you think Walter Payton was unaware he had a fondness for women, a proclivity to pain killers, and a deep struggle with the loss of the thing he loved most? The guy is probably the greatest human to ever play football, but he is still human. Authors scribe “tell-alls” about historical figures who have long since passed every damn day. Get over it, or just don’t read it.

  61. buzzbissinger says: Sep 30, 2011 3:01 PM

    If nothing else, Pearlman is right that his book should be judged by those who actually read it, and not those like Ditka who would cast aspersions on Pearlman before reading what he wrote.

    So you’re saying Ditka (who actually knew Payton) has no right to question some chump who wrote a book about him?

    The media just loves to stick up for each other.

  62. fwippel says: Sep 30, 2011 3:02 PM

    kd75 says:
    Sep 30, 2011 1:28 PM
    So everybody is shocked that a pro athlete abused pain killers, drank a lot and cheated on his wife?

    Really?

    US Presidents have done worse…

    ****************************************
    You make a good point. However, my problems with this book are simple. This was not authorized by his family, and Payton’s not around to answer these charges as being true or false. It seems like a lot of people posting here are just assuming these allegations are true. Who knows, maybe they are and maybe they aren’t.

    But theses allegations were not made while Payton was alive, and to bring it up after his passing without his family’s blessing is indecent, and just wrong.

    I wouldn’t want myself or any family member of mine to be treated like this; it’s not right. It may be legal, and protected free speech, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do.

  63. destructicus says: Sep 30, 2011 3:13 PM

    If I were Walter Payton, looking down in heaven, and somebody wrote a book about my life that DIDN’T include any of my questionable behavior I’d be pretty pissed at the inaccuracy.

    There’s no disrespect in accurately telling a man’s life story. Quite the opposite, in fact.

    Watch “Run Ricky Run” and you’ll see a perfect example of how strong men want to be represented.

  64. rickditka says: Sep 30, 2011 3:21 PM

    I’m sure the author is happy about the “backlash”, it helps to promote the book. Not much of a story there, I would have thought that Wally would have been more colorful. Pain killers, cheating… not much there. We could all have guessed that much.

  65. stairwayto7 says: Sep 30, 2011 3:35 PM

    Bears fans can’t handle the truth! They shoudl eb upset with Ditka for onyl going to 1 Super Bowl and not givign the ball the Peyton at the 1 but giving it to Fridge!

  66. twesty85 says: Sep 30, 2011 3:42 PM

    If Walter Payton were alive to confirm or deny the “facts” in this book i would be more open to the idea. Since he’s not alive I think this was the worst idea on behalf of the author and he should be ashamed of himself. It’s too bad there is no way for anyone to take legal action against the author for libeling(for those not next to a dictionary: anything that is defamatory or that maliciously or damagingly misrepresents.). Does anyone think he would have written this book if Mr. Payton was still alive? Mike Ditka should author a book to rebut what this “author” wrote.

  67. sportsdrenched.com says: Sep 30, 2011 3:54 PM

    It’s fundamentally in bad taste to write scandalous secrets about a dead celebrity when the celebrity was not given the opportunity to respond to the accusations. All this guy is doing is rehashing rumors and gossip without context. Yes, what exactly IS his purpose? One does not have to read a book to read damaging excerpts from it. Only an idiot does not realize that this is the age of Facebook and Twitter where so much damaging info is communicated out of context. Any responsible autheor has to understand the age we live in, and not require others to read his complate book to judge why he attacked a legend no longer with us.

    That’s why FB & Twitter draw criticism because the information there is quick, out of context, and hard to get to the orginial source.

    That’s not the case here. Jeff Pearlman wrote a BOOK. He’s bucking the quick hit information age. A book contains proper context, based on interviewed sources. Proper Context and understanding takes time to attain. I would assume if the stuff in the book isn’t true that there would be lawsuits filed. I find it hard to beleive that SI Editors would publish something like this without a legal review.

    Whether a person is alive or dead. The truth is the truth and you can’t get away from that even posthumously.

  68. str82dvd says: Sep 30, 2011 3:56 PM

    When did it become such a crime to report facts in this country?

  69. hoochbcs says: Sep 30, 2011 6:48 PM

    twesty85 says:
    Sep 30, 2011 3:42 PM
    It’s too bad there is no way for anyone to take legal action against the author for libeling(for those not next to a dictionary: anything that is defamatory or that maliciously or damagingly misrepresents.).
    *******************************************

    That could happen. And who knows, it might someday. However after 700 interviews I doubt Pearlman is in the business of making up stories. Plus, who gets sued? Pearlman or the person he is quoting?

    I’m not asking you specifically. I’m just throwing it out there. You and the rest of the morons who idol worship on this site are hopeless. But, that’s my 2 cents anyway.

  70. broncobillie says: Sep 30, 2011 7:11 PM

    Until Pearlman donates all the profits from the book to a charity, the fact remains is he is enriching himself, and doing it at the expense of another. Is it legal? Sure. Is it laudable? Absolutely not. But neither is the National Enquirer.

    If Pearlman is surprised there’s a backlash because he’s doing a National Enquirer on an icon, he’s an idiot. Who wants to buy a book written by an idiot?

    I agree with the poster who said we should also not forget SI for highlighting just the negative. Way to go, SI!

  71. irishjackmp says: Sep 30, 2011 8:48 PM

    The media often fail to realize that the first amendment isn’t just a right for the media, but a right for all Americans.

    Reporters seem to revel being the one’s holding the spotlight on someone else’s shortcomings (especially in a cowardly way as Pearlman does here… doing it after the guy is dead and can’t defend himself) but I suspect they would support it much less so if the spotlight were shown on them.

    Just once I’d love to see a guy like Pearlman get a taste of his own medicine and have someone dig around in his past to see if they’ve done drugs, cheated on their wives, etc and make it public. I highly doubt he would think it was “fair game” the way him going after Sweetness’s dirty laundry is.

  72. truthserum4u says: Oct 1, 2011 5:55 AM

    drmonkeyarmy says:
    Sep 30, 2011 12:36 PM

    Heaven forbid somebody tell the truth and not engage in the all too common practice of hero worship.

    Stiller43 says:
    Sep 30, 2011 12:36 PM

    As long as what he wrote was accurate and not a fabrication, what’s so wrong with writing these things? Because he’s no longer alive?

    People can’t know the truth about somebody posthumously?

    Payton may have been a wonderful man and a great football player, but why can’t the world know the whole story? (again, assuming these things are true)

    —————————————–

    It’s not about hero worshipping.
    It’s not whether it’s true or not.
    polishrod – It’s not about denying he had flaws.
    kevpft – It’s not about thinking anyone is perfect.

    Here’s what it’s about:

    What good does this book do? What is the point? What’s it’s purpose? What service does it provide? After all, Pearlman claimed it was a “disservice” that people are presented as a “golden guy”. He didn’t think it was wrong to show someone is flawed.

    But we don’t live in a Pollyana world anymore. The internet provides instant access to a multitude of outlets that gladly display and talk about the flaws of others. Who exactly does Pearlman think he is enlightening? Whose head is he pulling out of the sand with this inside look? Nobody thinks anyone is perfectanymore, if they ever did.

    The problem with a book that targets a persons faults and isn’t a “learn from my mistakes” or “I overcame this to reach success” point of view (which I assume is the case based on the author’s own words as to why he felt it was important to write it) is that we take down another person for people to look up to. It’s not hero worshipping, it’s finding someone who is an inspiration. It’s the good in someone else that inspires others to do the same. It’s the good in someone (overcoming obstacles, attaining success, helping others, sacraficing, working hard) that inspires others to reach heights they might not otherwise attain. And then they inturn may inspire following generations.

    What good does it do if by showing a person’s faults you potentially take away their ability to positively influence another? We already know people are human.

  73. axespray says: Oct 1, 2011 6:07 AM

    He’s a good guy, had some problems, He’s human, heck if he was 100% perfect as a human being, than I’d be more worried.

    it’s the guys that seem 100% perfect that tend to be those “B.T.K” type dudes.

  74. tdhawk says: Oct 2, 2011 11:53 AM

    Pearlman (how ironic his name?) should consider this gem from another noteworthy author, “Let no man notice the speck in another’s eye for the log in thy own.” Guy named Matthew wrote that after a sermon he heard on a mountain. It’s always dangerous to worry about or comment others.

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