It seems no one can get enough of basketball star Jeremy Lin, including journalists and pundits. The saturation media coverage of so-called Linsanity has extended to New York tabloids, Time magazine covers — and now New York Times columnists. Unfortunately, not everyone likes the angles the media are taking to get in on the Knicks player’s aura.
David Brooks, a Times columnist, wrote an op-ed column about a side of Lin that isn’t much in the public discourse: his religion.
The column, titled “The Jeremy Lin Problem,” opens with this:
“Jeremy Lin is anomalous in all sorts of ways. He’s a Harvard grad in the N.B.A., an Asian-American man in professional sports. But we shouldn’t neglect the biggest anomaly. He’s a religious person in professional sports.”
As sports fans know, religion in sports is as much an anomaly as team jerseys are. In an attempt to tackle the well-covered story of Lin, Brooks chose an angle that was inherently flawed. Athletes and religion are often inextricably linked.
“Please stop using Jeremy Lin to illustrate your pet theories,” the Atlantic’s Ta-Nahisi Coates writes in a response to Brooks’s column. “If your writing file displays little interest in professional sports, Jeremy Lin is a really bad place to start. There are just too many trip-wires.”
On Twitter, a hashtag questioned the so-called anomaly:
But with Lin’s popularity surging, there’s no doubt Brooks will not be the last writer to trip on the wires of Linsanity.