The Vermont Cynic

‘Bro code’ defends cheater


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Kobe Bryant’s farewell tour has been tainted by the locker room division, brought about by the actions of rising star D’Angelo Russell.

This seems to be a fitting conclusion for a team that is much more of a Harlem Globetrotter-esque traveling sideshow than a competitive basketball unit.

Russell recorded a conversation he had with his teammate, Nick Young, in which he seemed to lead Young in a purposefully incriminating direction as he asked questions about Young, who is 30, hooking up with a 19-year-old fan.

Russell’s actions have made him a leper among his own teammates – some reported it has gotten to the level of schoolyard bullying, with teammates rising from the lunch table when he sits – as well as a broad swath of basketball fans.

This wouldn’t be nearly as big of a deal if Young, nicknamed “Swaggy P,” were not engaged to hip-hop star Iggy Azalea.

Although the recording was meant to be private, it ended up leaking, and clearly showed Young admitting to cheating on Azalea.

However, more important than any of the sordid details of this tabloid drama is society’s general consensus that Russell is a vile pariah for violating the “bro code.”

To be sure, Russell’s actions were extremely immature and almost certainly planned around personal gain.

However the fact that this NBA player was cheating on his fiance has been lost in the wreckage.

In addition, the nonchalant manner with which he spoke about it would lead one to believe that this probably isn’t the first or last instance.

Analysts are avoiding this narrative because it’s an epidemic that permeates all professional sports, and must be swept under the rug so fans will continue to hold these players with reverent, godlike regard.

It’s much more prosperous than fans knowing many athletes are adulterous degenerates.

The other thing that is repulsive about this story is everyone’s quick defense of the “bro code” and the subsequent hatred directed toward Russell because of it.

While nobody likes a tattletale, and certainly not one who does so for his own gain, didn’t Russell inadvertently do the right thing in revealing this to Azalea?

At the end of the day, Nick Young still admitted to cheating on a women that he was planning on marrying.

Shouldn’t this be the bigger issue?

It’s disconcerting how much negative emphasis was put on revealing the infidelity, rather than on the immature way with which he did it.

In this case, the “bro code” is nothing more than a defense of cheating on one’s significant other through the use of teamwork, or at the very least turning a blind eye on it when it happens.

Should Russell have done what he did?

No.

But equally important is the question, should we, not just in the athletic world, but society in general, really be teaming up to “adhere to bro code” when it comes to infidelity?

It’s a sad world that thunderously chastises cheating on the court, but readily condones it off the court.

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‘Bro code’ defends cheater