20 Second Timeout is the place to find the best analysis and commentary about the NBA.

Monday, May 24, 2021

Kwame Brown's Important Messages

Unless you are completely disconnected from any form of social media, you have seen, heard, or at least read about the videos that Kwame Brown has posted recently. Brown's first video included his reaction to an exchange on a recent episode of the "All the Smoke" podcast hosted by Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson. During an interview with Jeanie Buss, Buss discussed the Lakers' trade of Marc Gasol and Kwame Brown for Pau Gasol when Barnes and Jackson interrupted Buss to assert that there was only one player on the other side of the Pau Gasol trade, as if Brown has no value. Brown has been the butt of insults dating back to when he was the number one overall pick of the 2001 NBA Draft, and Brown fired back with an extended NSFW response. 

It is easy to dismiss Brown as angry or say that he is ranting; that is often the reflexive reaction of people who do not want to address the substance of another person's message. In the initial video and then a steady stream of follow up videos, Brown has delivered several important messages, which I will paraphrase here in no particular order and without the NSFW language:

1) The very use of "All the Smoke" in the title of the podcast endorses both marijuana use and a confrontational approach to life; Barnes and Jackson pride themselves on being marijuana users who do not back down from conflict.

2) Barnes and Jackson are delivering negative and destructive messages to youth in general, and specifically minority youth. Brown urged Jackson to pull up his pants, act like an adult, and stop spending all night smoking weed and playing cards. It should be noted that this is not about whether or not marijuana use is legal (or should be legalized) in a particular jurisdiction, but rather about whether or not that lifestyle is the best lifestyle to promote to youth. 

3) Jackson tries to portray himself as both a Black Lives Matter activist and a "gangsta," but Brown considers both stances to be inauthentic. Jackson's response on Instagram (since deleted), a veiled threat to meet Brown on the street, only adds to Brown's credibility while diminishing Jackson's credibility.

4) Brown questioned why certain people are given media platforms and asserted that to get a media platform you have to be willing to compromise your values and compromise truth. Stephen Jackson is best known for running into the stands to confront fans in Detroit, and he has revealed himself to be an antisemite who unapologetically endorses Louis Farrakhan, so it is certainly reasonable to ask why major media corporations are so eager to work with him, and why so many people are eager to associate themselves with him.

5) Brown noted that Jackson brags about how much money he spent on, shall we say, "entertaining" himself, and Brown asks why Jackson does not use his wealth and resources to help others. 

6) Brown said that the only jokes people have about him are basketball jokes and he asked when people will get tired of that same old joke. He made over $60 million playing pro basketball, so he does not consider himself a bust in life; he owns property, grows his own food, and answers to no one. 

Paraphrasing a line from the movie "Searching for Bobby Fischer," I would note that when Kwame Brown played in the NBA he was better at basketball than the vast majority of people will ever be at anything. How many people rank in the top 350-400 in the world at anything?

7) Brown said that his frequent critics Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless are losers who never accomplished anything, and Brown asked what qualifies them to talk about basketball. Brown said that if he is a "scrub" and a bust like they asserted then he should be called "Houdini" for fooling so many teams into paying him to play basketball, and he asked if being a number one draft pick who plays in the NBA for over a decade constitutes failure then what are we to think of the athletic careers of guys like Smith and Bayless? 

8) Brown talked about how former player Jalen Rose tried to explain to Smith and Bayless that someone who plays for over a decade in the NBA is not a scrub and not a bust, but they just kept shouting Rose down.

9) Brown pointed out the NBA's double standard in punishing Lou Williams for violating COVID-19 protocols but not punishing LeBron James for violating the same protocols.

10) Brown praised his mother for her good advice, and he noted that he is a success story who overcame a difficult background. He is in no way a "scrub," and he contrasts his life path with what he termed the "degenerate" lifestyle afflicting minority communities, a lifestyle that he feels is encouraged and promoted by Barnes and Jackson.

I don't think that Brown is lashing out in anger. Ignore the NSFW language, and he has made a series of powerful statements. He is right about Barnes and Jackson not being good role models, and not being qualified for the huge media platform that they have been blessed to have. He is right that Smith and Bayless generally have no idea what they are talking about, and that they often take personal shots at people instead of just making a skill set analysis. Rose kept telling them that there is a difference between evaluating a person's basketball skills and just calling that person names, but Smith and Bayless disregarded what Rose said.

Brown is frustrated by the stupidity of so much that is said and depicted in the media. I share that frustration. Brown often predicts how his targets will respond to his videos, and he has been on target; he says that he is going to expose these people for who they really are, and to this point he has outsmarted them and made them look foolish. For instance, Brown has mentioned that people try to tear him down based on things that his family members did years ago, but Brown rightly noted that actions of family members when he was a young child have nothing to do with him and nothing to do with his message. Charlamagne tha God--and what person who has self-awareness gives himself such an outlandish name?--went on his podcast to talk about Brown's family history, and Brown just eviscerated the rapper, calling him out as a child rapist and asking why companies keep hiring him after the crime he committed. Charlamagne tha God, not quite understanding when to quit when he was only a little behind, had his lawyer send Brown a cease and desist letter stipulating that Charlamagne tha God pleaded guilty to contributing to the delinquency of the minor, not rape. Brown read the letter during his next video, said that he retracts calling Charlamagne tha God the "r word," and then expressed his opinion (in words that I will not repeat here) about the character of a person who contributes to the delinquency of a minor. Brown said that he does not care about the lawyer's letter, that he will keep expressing his opinion about Charlamagne tha God, and that he appreciates the lawyer informing him the exact name of the crime to which Charlamagne tha God admitted his guilt.

Brown was living in quiet obscurity until Barnes and Jackson decided to crack sophomoric jokes on their big-time show. They had a chance to reach out man to man to apologize but did not do so. Every target of Brown's videos went after Brown first, often in personal ways. They asked for what they are getting, and it seems like Brown is going to keep giving it to them. 

Kwame Brown is speaking truths that many are afraid to speak, and it will be interesting to see what happens next.

Labels: , , , ,

posted by David Friedman @ 9:52 PM



At Wednesday, May 26, 2021 5:27:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...


David kwame brown a breath of fresh hair

He a southern man who has high character and principles and he exposed matt barnes and stephen jackson for being little boys playing a image

All they had to do was apologize and kwame wouldnt of blown up like he did

He went 242k subscribers and like 150k instagram subscribers since this started.

He drops gems on respect manhood and how to treat people and how media attacks black men by using stephen a matt Barnes and jackson

Barnes and jackson dissed him 2 times in a week for no reason and kwame roasted them Bad

Barnes got it terrible "becky with the good hair" etc

They went from laughing at him on ig to running from ig hiding and deleting comments lol.

Idk david if i ever seen a flip like tha. they thought kwame Was dirt and the people like me and u like kwame and see the phony in barnes and jackson


Barnes avg 8 pg in 16 years when was he a great player at any level high school college or pro kwame was at least a high school all american

Stephen jackson could play a good player but he said delusional stuff like he was better than ray allen lol.

Kwame didnt live up to potential but was a high end bust he played 13 years and made 60 million dollars he was a serviceable big man

Great read tho david u made valid points


Post a Comment

<< Home