By Sara Konkel
Last updated: 02/11/14 10:00pm
Confusing celebrities in a live interview as an entertainment reporter is like pulling the wrong tooth as a dentist. It’s the ultimate failure.
In an L.A. interview with Samuel L. Jackson, KTLA 5 reporter Sam Rubin mistakenly asked Jackson about his Super Bowl commercial. Jackson awkwardly looked around before quickly realizing that he was referring to Laurence Fishburne.
Jackson immediately blew up and started scolding Rubin’s ignorance. He took the comment as a racial insult and shouted at him, saying that black people don’t all look alike. Jackson ranted for about two minutes shouting and laughing in annoyance with the comment.
Rubin’s co-anchors were laughing hysterically in the background while Rubin was desperately trying to change the subject back to the topic of Jackson’s new movie, RoboCop.
It’s never OK to wing it at your job, especially if your job involves being an expert in entertainment and not looking stupid in front of thousands of people. I think it’s safe to assume that Rubin went with the impromptu method in terms of the questioning for this interview. Had he come in a bit more prepared, he could have avoided a horrific, career-changing incident.
In an attempt to diffuse the situation, Rubin issued an apology shortly after noting that it may not be possible to live this error down. Even though he handled it in the best way he could, I’d say he’s probably right.
By Olivia Dimmer
Last updated: 02/11/14 11:53am
Coming out can’t be easy, especially when you’re on the verge of being drafted into the NFL. Michael Sam from the University of Missouri could be the first publicly gay player in professional football.
Sam is a senior on the Missouri football team, awaiting the 2014 NFL Draft in May. He was a first-team All-American and was the Associated Press co-Defensive Player of the Year in the Southeastern Conference. His teammates also voted him Missouri’s most valuable player.
Sam said in an interview with the New York Times that he came out to his team last fall in a preseason team building exercise.
“I looked in their eyes, and they just started shaking their heads — like, finally, he came out,” Sam said to the Times.
Coming out as a 6-foot-2, 260-pound gay man months before the draft selection for a notoriously heterosexual field is no small feat — especially with the overtly masculine culture and homophobic remarks that have sparked controversy lately in the league. Expressing his sexual orientation could cost Sam his career.
Yet, there is still hope that Sam can not only break into professional football, but succeed.
The NFL released a statement Sunday night saying: “We admire Michael Sam’s honesty and courage. Michael is a football player. Any player with ability and determination can succeed in the N.F.L. We look forward to welcoming and supporting Michael Sam in 2014.”
If all goes well for Sam, he could become a testament to this country’s changing opinions on gay rights and homosexuality. Sam could even challenge the pre-existing notions of football culture. Sam could give hope to young, gay, NFL hopefuls. Or he could do all three.
And for that, I think Sam deserves his current title of Missouri’s most valuable player — for his athletic ability, his honestly and most importantly, his unwavering bravery to stay true to himself.
By Ben Stram
Last updated: 02/10/14 9:20am
People flocked to Twitter to express their frustration last week after the announcement of a potential boxing match between rapper DMX and one of the most controversial “celebrities” — George Zimmerman.
Perhaps Zimmerman realized himself how downright ridiculous his decision to fight anybody in America really was.
Or perhaps he came to his senses and realized that he could be killed in that ring.
Either way, the match has been cancelled.
It’s pretty difficult for people to forget how he was acquitted on murder charges in death of Trayvon Martin. But maybe he forgot that?
The promoter of the event, Damon Feldman, tweeted the event has been called off.
“I’m sorry for anyone I hurt with this but this was a very big opportunity,” Feldman tweeted. “More to life then [sic] money. It was worth a lot of money to me, but people’s feelings meant more to me. I walked away from a million dollar payday with this fight but to be honest, I’d rather be happy and make people happy. Thank you.”
The reason for canceling the event wasn’t specifically explained, even though Feldman cited his morals as a factor. Who knows who told him to shut the event down?
The match was to be on March 15 between DMX and George Zimmerman and had drawn a ton of attention before its recent downfall.
DMX had not confirmed the fight yet, so many thought the fight would be scripted if the fighters even went through with it.
Sadly, I guess we’ll all be wondering “What if?”
By Matt Sheehan
Last updated: 02/05/14 6:48pm
After you are caught up in one of the most controversial trials in American history, the ex-defendant might want to lay low for a while.
Or volunteer for a boxing match, apparently.
George Zimmerman, who was acquitted on murder charges in death of Trayvon Martin, threw his name out to any celebrity that wants a piece of him. Predictably, thousands of people jumped to the opportunity to cave in Zimmerman’s face, but there is one name that will likely be his opponent — DMX.
While nothing is confirmed yet, the Yonkers, N.Y.-based rapper is the frontrunner to face Zimmerman in a celebrity boxing match.
Zimmerman is a “celebrity”?
As far as I’m concerned, Zimmerman didn’t record an album, star in a movie or take a team to the Super Bowl. Instead he gunned down a 17-year-old on unsolicited neighborhood watch duty, found himself in the midst of a gripping murder trial and was found innocent.
If Zimmerman’s a celebrity, when will he and Casey Anthony walk down the red carpet together?
Where can I line up for a photo opportunity with him? How can I join his fan club?
Oh, that’s right, those aren’t happening because people who are acquitted in a dubious trial aren’t celebrities. Heck, I’m willing to say Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton are 100 times more of a celebrity than he is. Come to think of it, some people who sing karaoke at Crunchy’s are closer that label than Zimmerman should ever be.
Celebrity or not, everyone can agree on one thing — this might be the most anticipated fight in the last decade.
By Juliana Moxley
Last updated: 02/05/14 10:58am
It has been 10 years since Facebook made it’s mark on the social media scene. In the beginning, the site was targeted at college students to help them easily discover who’s in their class.
As Facebook’s tenth birthday rolled around, the social media website has evolved into something so much more than an outlet to “Facebook stalk” others.
People have attributed Facebook as the one thing that can easily consume hours of their day. Between scrolling through your timeline and looking at pictures for last weekend’s awesome party while you’re sitting in a long lecture, people have found it easy to become “addicted to Facebook.”
While some people bash social media for being a way to stalk people or a daily distraction, the social network has actually evolved into an outlet for news. People or organizations can post stories in order to create awareness for certain topics, a place where people go to for breaking news and, of course, it has increasingly been making communication between people easier.
I’m sure everyone has seen a story or two posted on Facebook informing friends about a fundraiser or event, which then gets shared by other people and rapidly expands awareness. Fundraising for events has become so simple, all it takes is a few simple clicks from a link you saw on Facebook in order to donate money to your favorite charity.
Another aspect of Facebook that is currently popular among many groups of people is the ability to form a “Facebook group,” which enables a group of people to privately and quickly communicate with one another. Even certain classes have taken a liking to creating Facebook groups so that classmates can help one another when studying for exams or finding out what they may have missed that day in class. Being a reporter at The State News, I have also become a part of the Facebook group that is just for The State News employees. The benefit of having a Facebook group makes it easier for everyone to communicate and post questions or funny comments, all with the benefit of not having more e-mails being sent to your inbox and getting lost in cyberspace.
While Facebook is now utilized in more ways than just “creeping” on that attractive person you passed by in the library today, there is still an entertainment factor to the website. The ability to post pictures and statuses directly from your phone make it simple for a relative in another state see what you’re up to. There’s also the ability to play games on Facebook, hence the multiple Candy Crush requests you receive from friends who are desperate for a new life in the game.
Facebook can in fact be a distraction for some people, but these past 10 years have brought with it new innovations that make communicating, sharing and entertainment easier than ever.
By Erik Sargent
Last updated: 02/03/14 9:59pm
Each year, millions of people across the globe come together on the first Sunday in February to eat food, drink beer and watch the greatest sport in the world.
Yes, it’s Super Bowl Sunday, an American tradition unlike any other. Along with the football part of the day, people are given the added bonus of the best commercials on television for the year and also a halftime show featuring a mega-star or band.
Yesterday’s Super Bowl did not live up to the epic billing that the national media had created for it. In fact, it wasn’t even close to what was expected.
Starting with the actual game, it was the best matchup you could get on paper in terms of pure football talents.
It featured the Denver Broncos, Peyton Manning and the league’s number one offense vs. the Seattle Seahawks, Richard Sherman and the league’s number one defense.
What resulted was an absolute thrashing of the Denver Broncos, as the Seahawks rolled to a 43-8 victory. The game was in Seattle’s control from the opening snap and Denver was never able to make it a game.
The second part of the day that was subpar was the commercials. Generally, there are very funny commercials that become viral web videos and capture the nation.
This year, there was hardly anything worth remembering. Aside from a couple of touching Budweiser commercials and a brief Seinfeld reunion, the commercials were lackluster.
Finally, the halftime show featuring Bruno Mars was average at best. While Bruno Mars is a talented musician, the awkward placement of the Red Hot Chili Peppers in the middle was just weird and didn’t fit well at all.
Here’s to hoping next year’s Super Bowl gives us some actual entertainment.
By Kary Askew Garcia
Last updated: 02/02/14 9:02pm
Why do college athletes need a union when they’re already getting a free ride? Students at Northwestern University in Illinois have recently advocated to create a union for student athletes, according to a story by Bloomberg News. According to the article these student-athletes are trying to gain more “financial and legal rights” by creating the union.
Yet what happens if suddenly student athletes started to get paid? Especially when you go to a school with a rising football program like MSU it’s understandable to praise certain players that perform well and bring in such revenue for the university. Still, does that entitle them to a salary? Being on an team in college is something completely voluntary and many student-athletes are given scholarships in order to come to school. With many students barely able to afford college, that’s a slap in the face.
Not to mention most university programs that students are a part of on a volunteer-basis are unpaid. If athletes begin to get paid, students engaged in their academics and academic programs will seem to be considered less valuable. It’s going to make it seem like being athletic is a good reason to get paid and by rewarding student athletes with a salary it creates an unfair environment for other hardworking or talented students.
Education is the reason for the university in the first place, and if you want to play a sport then play a sport. But don’t complain about it if you’re not going to get paid for doing a good job on the field. You have a shot at going pro and making millions, and chances are your education has already been paid for.
By Geoff Preston
Last updated: 01/30/14 7:42pm
Maybe a white guy from upstate New York isn’t the foremost authority on what constitutes a “thug,” but to call Richard Sherman a thug is lazy and embarrassing.
In case you don’t know, Richard Sherman is a cornerback for the NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks, after making a game saving defensive play he was interviewed by Erin Andrews and proclaimed that he was “the best corner in the game!” and that the receiver he was going against all game was “mediocre.”
Richard Sherman is also black, has dreads and is known for talking smack during games. After his tirade he was given the “thug” label by Twitter trolls and unemployed, basement living 30-year-olds from Seattle to Miami. He also holds a Master’s degree from some school in Palo Alto called Stanford and got a 4.2 GPA in high school.
Of course that’s not even the main reason why Sherman isn’t a thug. Sherman doesn’t talk trash anymore than any player in the NFL. For everyone that watches the “aw shucks” demeanor Peyton Manning and thinks every player should be like that, I have news for you: Peyton Manning knows he’s the best. He doesn’t just think it, he knows it. He might not say it, but you don’t become as good as he is without knowing you are the best or have the potential to be.
So Richard Sherman says it out loud and he is a thug? To me that line of thinking is lazy. Yes he has dreadlocks, but make an effort to look past that. Yes, he is black, but good lord, it’s 2014 — I shouldn’t have to tell anyone to look past that. What Richard Sherman happens to be is an intelligent football player who might not be wrong calling himself the best in the game. As anyone that has played competitive sports can attest, he sure isn’t wrong believing it.
By Casey Holland
Last updated: 01/29/14 10:21pm
It has been the most common excuse given to me throughout my life whenever anything went wrong.
It seemed the only response people could think of was, “Well, that sucks, but everything happens for a reason.”
They would add that it might just take awhile to realize what that reason was, or that things would be made right again because hey, that’s just the way the world works. It was as if they viewed life as a screenplay or a novel and that its lows could be solved with a little push from the universe.
When my parents first separated, my mom repeated this phrase often, to the point where it almost became a lifeline for her. The announcement of their divorce and the year and a half long process that came with it left me confused, frustrated and hurt all at once.
I didn’t understand how two people could vow to be together forever and bring two daughters into the world, only to decide that they no longer loved each other. I was left with nothing but questions that would continue to remain unanswered.
I clung to my mom’s mindset almost as much as she did. I desperately wanted to believe that this was all a part of some master plan, just a bump in the road that would eventually smooth itself out.
If I’m being honest, believing that everything was happening for a reason made things so much easier.
It gave me an excuse to just sit back and wait for everything to fix itself without actually making a move to make things better on my own — if everything really was happening for a specific reason, then that reason would eventually have to reveal itself to me. My only responsibility was to wait.
It became my go-to excuse throughout my senior year of high school. I failed that math test? It happened for a reason. Car wouldn’t start? I guess I just was not meant to go out that day. I left everything up to the illusion of fate.
This mindset stayed with me until the fall semester of my freshman year at MSU. On an average day during a seemingly average 10:20 lecture, my professor said a few simple words that left my brain reeling.
She said, “It’s not about what happens to you — it’s what you do with what happens to you.”
The more I tossed the idea around in my head, the more I started to believe in it. Maybe everything didn’t have to be left up to the universe. Maybe I could choose my own fate.
At the end of the day, not everything happens for a reason. Things are going to go wrong and it’s going to hurt, but it’s not the universe or fate that are in control.
My parents’ divorce, now no longer simply an act of fate in my mind, helped me decide who I wanted to be. It helped shape me into someone who is independent, who will never let herself rely on anyone else in the future. I found answers instead of questions and found who I want to become.
When bad things happen, now matter how horrible they are, it gives us a chance to learn from them. People don’t have to be steered one way or another by “fate.” They can make their own reasons for what happens to them and find ways to grow from them instead.
By Sierra Lay
Last updated: 01/28/14 9:43pm
The most insulting part of having class on Tuesday was the frostbite calculator linked to MSU’s website.
Almost every student has a 10 minute walk to at least one class, and many students have walks of 20-40 minutes to some classes.
The Student Health Services page on MSU’s website warns that “frostbite can begin to occur in the temperatures we are having within 10 to 15 minutes.”
Seems like that makes most of our treks to class dangerous to our health, doesn’t it?
MSU students were anticipating a snow/cold day Tuesday due to extremely frigid temperatures, including a forecasted wind chill of negative 35 degrees.
Almost every social media outlet available was buzzing with posts from students, ranging from desperate pleas to sassy demands for classes to be called off. Most posts were addressed to President Lou Anna K. Simon, one student even joking that “if class doesn’t get canceled tomorrow, Lou Anna K. has to walk me to every class.”
Some staff members even expressed opinions in favor of canceling class, seemingly just as unhappy about commuting through the tundra-like conditions as we were. When officials announced that classes would go on as scheduled, one professor reached out to students, offering them the option of staying home if they deemed the weather conditions unsafe. She assured students iClickers wouldn’t be used, and posted her morning lecture online.
No one can be sure why MSU’s classes remained in session while almost every surrounding school–and hundreds of schools throughout Michigan and neighboring states–was closed.
Maybe it was because MSU has always been reluctant to cancel class, or perhaps the weather forecast changed at the last minute. But we can only assume they must have some valid reason to force us into the frigid temperatures and icy winds of campus.
Even if that reason is still not apparent when our gloved fingertips have gone numb from the cold.