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Jace Fry, and the stooling of our society

Can’t we be better?

Kansas City Chiefs v New England Patriots
The Truth: So are the other six days, amirite?
Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

Apparently, at the same time Jace Fry was having a bit a of struggle with his first major league start — surrendering a home run to Francisco Lindor three pitches into the game — his engagement was being smashed to smithereens by his fiancée.

How do we know this? Apparently that smashing was done on social media — Instagram, Twitter.

No, but really, how do we as Chicago White Sox fans know this? Because someone named Pat tipped off scorched-earth journalism site Deadspin with the story. And in all likelihood, Pat doesn’t troll the social media accounts of major league fiancées on a daily basis to see who’s having a fight or breaking up: He or she was tipped to this info by someone close to the breakup.

And why should we know this? Believe me, I get it, it’s an old man take to go anything short of all-in on the concept that every aspect of our lives should be, or could be, known and public at all times. Many of us actively contribute to this global newsgathering via social media, as producers and consumers.

And I’m not outright dogging Deadspin, because within this more nauseating, TMI content is some great writing and outstanding journalism, stories that need to be told that no one else is telling. I’d prefer more Outside the Lines and less TMZ, but I’m afraid our world does not reflect those tastes.

And perhaps you find the transfer of compromised bodily fluids, or the psychological diagnosis of one scorned half of a coupling to another fascinating. Some of you must, or else these stories wouldn’t exist. It’s just weird.

No judgment in the ongoing case of the ex-engaged, I’ve hurt and been hurt. Most of us have. Jace’s fiancée telegraphed that she would delete her posts shortly, and thank goodness someone was there to screencap her pain (or aggression) for posterity — and profit. It’s just a sad statement on our society.

And speaking of sad statements on our society, there’s the Barstool Sports empire, representing the worst of the bro culture most of us hoped to leave behind in the 2000s ... or 1990s ... or 1980s ... or 1950s ... or 1850s ...

I’m certain some of you read/watch and like Barstool. And that’s fine, you have that right. I wish every last one of you shared my exact opinions on the crisis our country is in right now, but I know you don’t, and I try to walk a careful line over that. Not because (h/t MJ) “Republicans [or Democrats] buy shoes, too,” but because I can honor our need to have the White Sox provide some sort of (mostly) safe haven from the harsh world out there. It’s not easy, really, but part of my duty here is to honor that.

And you don’t need another white-guy take on Barstool, so I won’t grapple too much with spelling out one. But I thought we as a society were better than this.

I know, lighten up, it’s just a bunch of white guys backslapping at the expense the other gender and other colors. A story as old as time, right? But, speaking again as one of those white guys, don’t we already have enough safe spaces? Isn’t the world itself, by and large — and yeah I know “they” want to kill “me” for my freedoms, spare me, we’re talking sports and culture, and pain for profit — my safe space?

To read the accounts of people who are not like me, struggling to walk through doors busted open for me from birth, is heartbreaking. The female reporter who needs to double-take every move she makes, from her makeup, outfit, intimacy, questioning, to eye gaze. The African-American consumer who must mentally hopscotch through something as simple as a stop at a Quick-E-Mart, much less a Macy’s. Latin players, insinuated as dumb by even our recently-departed team announcer, cheered on the field at the same time many of those whooping would wall them out.

It’s just ... enough. Can’t we stop this stupidity? Can’t we put an end to caricature for profit and just stand shoulder-to-shoulder, finally?

I’m proud of the work we’ve done here at South Side Sox this season. I hope I’ve continued the respectful, high-minded tone set by the prior administration, and raised the ante by passing the mic to additional, diverse voices. That mission is ongoing, and hopefully the makeup built into this site will never again collapse back in on itself. The world we live in is rich, and abundant; there’s no reason our site shouldn’t be reflective of the White Sox fanbase.

And I appreciate all of you keeping a sense of fair play, comporting yourselves well even when debate over, hmm, something even as nuanced and sensitive as service time gets hot.

In coming days or weeks I hope to outline an offseason plan, and soon segue into coverage for 2019, including additional voices on SSS. I hope you’ve enjoyed your time here in 2018, stick around as the calendar turns, and ask for an even bigger helping in 2019.