Saturday, November 10, 2007

Ok, this is kind of despicable

This week, CNN aired a documentary called "Death Grip: Inside Pro Wrestling" which dealt with the horrific Chris Benoit murder/suicide and the alarmingly high rate at which professional wrestlers have been dying prematurely. During the piece, they conducted an interview with WWE star John Cena, currently rehabbing a torn pectoral muscle. What the documentary aired and what Cena actually said are drastically different things. This is a pretty ugly example of selective reporting, misrepresenting someone's statements to fit an obvious agenda.

CNN version
Voiceover: "John Cena is a WWE superstar, now recovering from an injury in the ring. He doesn't like being asked if he has used steroids."
Cena: "This is a crazy question. It's something that...it's tough to answer just because the way society is now, the way people conceive things because performance enhancing drugs have got the spotlight, and it's a hot thing to talk about. I can't tell you that I haven't but you'll never be able to prove that I have.

Wow, seems rather damning, right? Like one of those Mark McGwire "I'm not here to talk about the past" non-admission admissions. WWE smartly recorded the interview, obviously expecting shenanigans. And here's what Cena actually said.

Actual, Unedited Version
Interviewer: And it seems that WWE is under the microscope right now.
Cena: Of course. As is all of sport.
Interviewer: A lot of talk about steroid abuse, drug abuse. Have you ever used steroids?
Cena: Absolutely not. And this is a...
Interviewer: Even back in bodybuilding days? Football days?
Cena: This is a crazy question, and it's something that's tough to answer just because the way society is now, the way people conceive things because performance enhancing drugs have got the spotlight, and it's a hot thing to talk about. Any time you see any athlete, in any athletic venture, even the PGA tour, achieve physical greatness, something that is beyond the norm, even for a top-tier athlete. If top-tier athletes are rushing for a thousand yards, and then somebody comes out and starts running people over and rushing for two thousand, it's not athletic achievement any more, and that's something that really gets me. It's always, 'he or she is on performance enhancing drugs.' And it's only because certain athletes have gotten themselves in a certain situations where the finger is automatically pointed at somebody else and they go, 'oh, they're on performance enhancing drugs.' My answer to that question, have you ever used steroids, is the only thing I can say, I can't tell you that I haven't but you'll never be able to prove that I have. Because each one of you, each one of you out there, has an opinion on how I carry myself. And I can take a million tests, I've been tested for drugs since I was seventeen years old, I can take a million tests and pass every one of them. But as soon as I pass it there's another guy going, 'oh, there are masking agents, there's this, there's that.' I know the arguments because I've been in that situation. This is a subject that's very near and dear to me because since I was a very small child I've worked my ass off to get to where I'm at, and it sucks to be able to have to deal with people saying I rely on a crutch. You know I wake up every day and I work myself to the bone because I love what I do. I got the best gig in the world and I love it. And it kills me to have to sit here and do this with one arm. I want to be back out there. You hear stories about guys coming home from the war, and they're in the infirmary and all they want to do is get back out into the field. I want to get back in the field, you know, it's killing me. But to have to deal with the popularity of a substance that enhances performance, it's tough to take. I take great pride in the fact that I have a god-given gift of above average natural strength. And I show it off whenever I can because to me it's fun, it's entertaining, and it's what I love to do.

Notice how CNN omitted the "absolutely not" part, Cena's direct answer to the steroids question. And the part about having a natural gift. And how they acted as though the "I can't tell you I haven't" was his direct response to the steroid question. This is just lame, lazy and irresponsible.

2 Comments:

Blogger DanaKing said...

"That's just lame, lazy, and irresponsible."

No, that's CNN,

5:31 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Armintrout said...

Oh, that's really nice. ::fumes silently::

8:41 AM  

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