- The Washington Times - Friday, January 21, 2000

To be perfectly frank, we have never been baseball fans. Aside from the fact that it is singularly unappealing to us to see grown men in little beanie caps and leggings running around in the dirt throwing balls at each other, we find the game is just too slow and predictable for our tastes.

We came up with the idea that there should be hidden sand pits and bear traps buried around the field. If they would add this bit of merriment to the game, then you would really see the players jump around. No more the boredom of a fielder languidly preparing for the inevitable catch of a pop fly. A wrong step here, a mis-positioning there, and the jaws of a bear trap would put some of that old snap, crackle and pop back into the game. But alas, as in the case of so many other prophets unheralded in their time, our idea did not seem to catch on, so we turned our attention away from baseball into areas more worthy of our penetrating analysis, and concentrated more on the highways and byways of human, and some not-so-human, behavior.

Notwithstanding our indifference to the national pastime, the recent ranting of baseball player John Rocker caught our attention. In an interview, this Neanderthal dumped on "Queer[s] with AIDS … foreigners … 20 year old mom[s] with four kids," and the city of New York in general.

Since these pronouncements were not exactly emanating from Albert Einstein, our initial reaction was that a person had to be a little deficient in the gray matter department in the first place to spend his adult life running around in circles. You would never find a Jew running around in circles, worse yet with his whole intention being to set foot in the absolute exact place he started from. A Jew may run to catch a train, a plane or his wife's boyfriend. He runs to get somewhere or something, not to go nowhere and get nothing.

The next day the media carried stories that Rocker's superiors at the Atlanta Braves ordered him to undergo psychiatric testing. Putting aside the presumption that one has to have a brain in the first place before psychiatric testing is possible, the very thought of forced psychiatry used against someone whose views are contrary or unpopular conjures up for us some of the most horrendous aspects of modern totalitarian regimes.

After several minutes of sustained heavy-thinking and discussion with some of the most eminent minds in the coffee shop, we have rethought the situation and now believe it is not a completely bad idea.

Why not start with the owner of the Braves himself, Ted Turner. He described Christianity as, "a religion for losers," made fun of the pope, and applauded the mass suicide of the Heaven's Gate cult. Turning away from the world of sports, how about Ross Perot who saw men running around his lawn involved in some sort of Cuban-lesbian plot. And what about a certain politician who can't keep his hands off girls of any size, shape or condition, and then swears under oath that the girls were hallucinating or, as his wife would describe it, he was victim of "a right-wing plot."

You don't need Doctor Freud to see there is something wrong with a 50-year-old man who can't seem to figure out what you are supposed to do with a cigar when there is a young girl in the room and you can't find a match. Shouldn't somebody be warming up a psychiatrist's couch in the West Wing?

And what about the people who stood in the cold for 24-hours in Times Square looking at a clock? Start rolling out the couches. And what about the psychiatrists themselves, who spend half their lives in medical school, internship and residency and then spend the other half listening to rich, overweight women on couches talking about some things that happened 30 years earlier? Personally, if we are alone with a woman on a couch for an hour, and she still has her clothes on, we consider that we struck out, which brings us back to baseball, a game we never thought much of to begin with.

Jackie Mason is a comedian and Raoul Felder is a famed attorney.

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