More on the Bonds Ball
Fashion designer Marc Ecko took to the tubes at ESPN.com today for a live chat about his handling of Barry Bonds‘ tainted ball. As it turns out, Ecko is an interesting, thoughtful, and seemingly intelligent man who did not enter into this lightly or on a whim. He appears quite genuine in his quest to use this as a way to further the debate and dialogue about ethics and integrity in sports.
The full transcript is behind ESPN’s “Insider” firewall (nice job, dopes), so if you’re not a member of that service you won’t be able to read it. How-evah, I’ve excerpted two of the best passages for you because I think they deserve to be seen.
Chris (Boston): Out of the three choices you proposed, which one would you choose?
Marc Ecko: I voted, before people knew the site was live, for the asterisk. The reason is that it’s a lot bigger than 756. It has to do with the last 10 years in sports. It’s a system that fosters its athletes to cheat. I want to be able to look at my heros and look at them as heros for a reason and doing it on their own. My ability to imagine doing these things and the very notion that it might not be what it actually is, is bad for the sport. You don’t need that in the living room, when you’re watching the game. You don’t need to be having that discussion.
Then a few questions later…
Chris Starr San Francisco, CA: I understand you’re not a Barry Bonds fan and that’s fine, but wouldn’t the $752,467 have been spent as a donation to charity? Isn’t that a lot of money to waste on a baseball you have no intention of keeping?
Marc Ecko: Actually, as a private citizen who spends millions and millions on charity as it is and earns his money by working really hard, I think the way I spent the money is a good thing. This won’t get swept under the rug. As a social issue, this is real. In terms of speaking about our values and pro sports. I think it’s been good to get that debate out there. After 10 million votes, it’s about seven cents a vote. I wanted to do this, I wanted to mix it up. I earned it. That’s what life should be about. Good question. Fair question.
He also talks about the Hall of Fame and how they’re working with him to display the ball and tell the whole story behind it (assuming it doesn’t end up in space).
This is just about the best thing that could have happened to the ball. Maybe some good will ultimately come of it.