When Gene Simmons speaks, you have to listen.
That’s a rule of mine.
Having been to scores of Kiss concerts over the years and a big fan of Simmons’ marketing genius, he’s an individual whose every public statement is worth consideration – which is why his recent defense of Tim Tebow, the unemployed Heisman Trophy winning quarterback, took me completely by surprise.
Here’s what Gene Simmons said:
“He’s got a religious passion, as well he should – we’re in America. He’s proud to be a Christian, what’s wrong with that? And yet, with sports media and pop culture media, they make fun of his religion. Really? In America? If he was wearing a burqa, they wouldn’t dare say anything. But if you’re a Christian, you get to be picked on? What the hell? The guy’s got family values. I never saw the media picking on Michael Vick for torturing dogs. Or this other football player, who’s alleged to have killed, committed murder. That’s ‘cool.’ But a guy who’s religious and has got family values isn’t ‘cool.’ He’s cool to me.”
Step back and think about what Simmons is implying here, and you have an incredibly bold statement on the cultural barometer of American life.
There is no doubt Tim Tebow is a polarizing figure. Having won three-of-four games he played in against my beloved University of Georgia football team (he was a highly successful quarterback for the University of Florida from 2006-2009), I’ve had a long-standing grudge against him but admiration as well.
But that’s only because his final two years at Florida, he helped orchestrate victories over the ‘Dawgs by the combined score of 90–27.
When he came out of Florida and was drafted by the Denver Broncos, perhaps the most disgusting comment was leveled at Tebow, and it had nothing to do with his religious views.
As the news of his selection in the NFL Draft of 2010 was made public, cameras captured the Tebow family celebrating the news. Fred Toettcher, a Boston-area sports personality, said the scene looked like a “Nazi rally”:
Just when you thought you knew everything about Tim Tebow, a Boston sports radio station informed us that he is probably a Nazi.
The host was joking, but then so was Don Imus when he insulted the Rutgers women’s basketball team and CBS fired him. Will it do the same when the race-based insults are directed at Tebow?
Why do I get the feeling Tebow will be Denver’s starting quarterback before Fred Toettcher is out of a job?
“Toucher,” as he is known to his listeners on 98.5 The Sports Hub, had this observation on Tebow’s draft-night gathering.
“It looked like some kind of Nazi rally … so lily-white is what I’m trying to say. Yeah, Stepford Wives.”
Could you imagine any sports personality saying that a black family celebrating their son’s/grandson’s/nephew’s selection by an NFL team on camera looked like “a scene from a welfare office”?
Of course not.
But upon entering the NFL, Tebow was a lightning rod of controversy that has continued to garner attack after attack even when he’s not donning a jersey on Sunday.
And that’s what Simmons was alluding to in his defense of Tim Tebow, offering a welcome defense of professional sports’ most polarizing individual.
Back in 2007, when news first broke of Michael Vick’s involvement with dog fighting, it was [positively] reported that he had found God. But for Tebow to have lived his entire life committed to Christ is somehow a sin, worthy of fodder and ridicule in the eyes of many, especially media.
Though I’m still yet to be convinced Tim Tebow has the ability to be a starting quarterback in the NFL, being an outspoken, passionate believer in Jesus Christ shouldn’t be a metric used against him by scouts or media.
At the age of 26, Tebow has a 9-7 record as a starting quarterback, completing 47.9 percent of his passes. In the playoffs, he’s 1-1, completing only 40.4 percent of his passes.
In football terminology, that’s how you should gauge Tim Tebow’s effectiveness as a quarterback in the NFL.
However, he has also rushed for 660 yards in 14 games back in 2011. In 15 games, Robert Griffin III rushed for 815 yards for the Washington Redskins in 2012 (a significant portion coming on a 76-yard run against Minnesota).
There’s a belief by many NFL pundits and scouts that a new era is upon football, where the dynamic and athletic quarterback of the future (as embodied by Griffin, Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers and Colin Kapernick of San Francisco) is about to revolutionize the game.
Tim Tebow would seem to fit the description of a quarterback who isn’t cut from the same mold of a Tom Brady or Brett Favre (perhaps the greatest quarterback of all time), but is rarely mentioned in the same breath as a Griffin, Newton, or Kapernick.
Though his lack of passing accuracy can’t be questioned, Tebow is consistently left out of many quarterback discussions because he routinely doesn’t fit the left-wing media’s agenda.
I know from firsthand experience that if you don’t sing the media’s narrative you better not let them know it. Otherwise, they will black ball you and try to encourage the American sheeple to do the same.
One quick example to support my theory: I watch the World Series every year as most of you probably do. Each year I see a stat that comes across the screen during at least one of the games (generally having to do with Mariano Rivera). It lists all of the top post-season closers of all time. They usually do this to show how dominant Rivera has been during his post-season career. At any rate, the stat always reads “top post-season closers of all time (minimum 15 innings pitched).”
As one would expect there are several notable names up there, but one name that is always absent despite having thrown 21.3 scoreless playoff innings is … mine. That’s no accident, folks. That’s conspiracy. I know about it – and so does Tim Tebow.