Morning Joe | January 31, 2013
>>> here we have a young man that fell deeply, romantically in love.
>> does he say that? does he say he fell in love ?
>> i asked him straight up, was this a romantic relationship with you? and he says yes. i said, are you, then, therefore gay? and he said, well, when you put it that way, yes. and then he caught himself and said, i am confused.
>> actually, willie --
>> i may actually turn the bushmaster.
>> no, no, no. isn't that violating the doctor/patient relationship just a tad bit?
>> not if you're not a real doctor.
>> he plays a doctor on tv.
>> he plays a doctor on tv.
>> the guy plays a doctor in an interview with lights. this is all on the record.
>> this is really just for show. it's really not real.
>> well, it's real for us. we're trying to figure out what's going --
>> willie , i've got this manti puzzle at home.
>> it's starting to come together.
>> found one more piece.
>> this is starting to get boring.
>> fits right in there.
>> dave zirin 's here, sports editor of "the nation" and
author of "game over: how politics has turned the sports world upside down." where are we in the manti -- it was hot and heavy for a week. people kind of lost interest. did we sort of figure it out in that dr. phil interview yesterday?
>> when i see dr. phil , i welcome our imminent zombie overlords.
>> yes, they're coming.
>> it's a preferable future for me. it would be a happier country. less dr. phil , more zombies. where we are with te'o, america has a newer shinier ball to look at, so they've moved on to the next story, which is of course the super bowl in the sports world .
>> i thought you were talking about the deer husk spray.
>> the deer antler spray? i was in the green room huffing it for hours.
>> we actually have it.
>> we have an oxygen tank, but we actually -- you breathe that stuff in.
>> it's the only way to do morning news. but the manti te'o story, it's still, to me, not being talked about the way it needs to be talked about which is a major crisis in sports journalism . i don't care who he dated, who he didn't date, whether he was in love with a computer or not or tuiasosopo. good pronunciation.
>> you've been studying this story.
>> the bigger issue is that you still have this thing in sports that the great "new york times" sports writer, what he said, you've god up ad let'ses. you god them up, build them up only to tear them down. look at lance armstrong . if armstrong, god forbid , had died ten years ago, might be named differently.
>> we talked about sports before, and we've talked about it, so many of these sports guys, you don't want to call them sports journalists , they kiss up to 18, 19, 20-year-old kids.
>> the same thing with tiger woods . a lot of people could have asked a lot of questions, but he was the only game in golf in town for 10, 15 years. to go up against tiger woods was to lose access to tiger woods , and it was a story that everybody could talk about all the time. so i think there's a resistance -- and not everybody, but in some quarters, they don't want to shoot down the great story.
>> and you don't know sometimes where the kardashians end and the nba begins in sports journalism . unfortunately what this hides for us is there are huge stories that profound on the country and don't get discussed. that's really what the book is about. like in the last five years, massive economic crisis in the country reflected itself in sports . look at four lockouts just in the last year. the issue of football injuries i think has had a profound effect about how parents see sports , 1 million less kids signing up for youth football.
>> you see the president --
>> yeah, the president saying to "the new republic," leading from behind. people have been talking about this for years. and he's coming in on it now.
>> one of the huge stories going forward is going to be the economic underpinnings of the national football league .
>> all this pending litigation. it could be catastrophic.
>> 4,000 former players suing the league including a slew of hall of famers. and what they're raising, it's going to be, like, seriously like a cattle call of testimonies of people who say, you know, i could have predicted losing my hips, losing my knees. i didn't know i wouldn't be able to remember my kids' names, and that's going to be devastating.
>> that sounds, willie , like a happy segue into the super bowl this weekend.
>> the super bowl this weekend. we know the obvious one --
>> good segue.
>> that was good. the obvious story line is the coaches, the two brothers going against each other. what else are you looking at?
>> from the political perspective, this is like the lgbt super bowl in some respects. like is america ready for the big gay super bowl ? on the ravens ' side --
>> excuse me?
>> didn't get that? in scarborough country , are they ready for this?
>> i don't know if they're ready for it in san francisco . you see what the players said?
>> that's what's so interesting. the san francisco 49ers are also the first nfl team to do one of the it gets better ads. the ravens have a player who said openly i'm going to use the super bowl as a place to talk about marriage equality and to talk about anti-bullying campaigns. then the 49ers have a player named chris culliver, one of howard stern 's sweaty minions all this anti-gay homophobic stuff. the growth of an lgbt movement in this country has also had a profound effect on athletes, on masculinity, on how people talk about sports . it's really fascinating. the other issue in the super bowl , this is not being talked about, but there's going to be a commercial --
>> are you going to make up another issue?
>> this is a real one. there have been, like, actual protests -- actual protests in the streets of d.c. the other one was real, too. this one's real. there's going to be a super bowl ad for a company called tod eed sodastream that's on an illegal settlement in the west bank . there have been protests of showing the ad, protests of people saying no, this is a good thing. this is also going to be a political repercussion in sports .
>> sports is political, huh?
>> the house is on fire anyway. i'm not the arsonist. i'm just saying look, it's on fire.
>> okay, billy joel .
>> we got our picks lined up.
>> we've got our picked in order.
>> we're going to go around the table. i'm taking the ravens for no reason. i've got a friend from baltimore. i like the team. they're gritty, they're old. one last stand for the ravens .
>> i like the ravens because of the coach, john harbaugh , a little more smiley-faced than his brother.
>> i think they're going to shut down kaepernick.
>> i like the ravens because this is colin kaepernick 's tenth start of his career. law of averages and ed reed hasn't had an impact game yet, the future hall of fame safety for the ravens , he's due.
>> no reason?
>> she doesn't show her work. she just gives you the answer.
>> and usually right.
>> don't be frightened.
>> i'm going with the ravens .
>> the 49ers are favored and everybody's picking, the four or five of us just picked the ravens .
>> i don't know why you did that.
>> you did at the end of the year.
>> i saw it in terms of ray lewis ' last ride and deer antler spray or not, is he an icon in baltimore. and the whole city's behind him.
>> but as we know, ray lewis takes a back seat on sunday to the soda company from the west bank . that'sanybody's going to be talking about on the broadcast.
the book is "game over: how politics has turned the sports world upside down."
>> great to be here.
>>> three months after sandy, we'll visit a community has still very much in need of relief. you'll want to stick around this. keep it on