Well, yes and no.
Jared Remy’s certainly hurting after the Boston Globe blowtorched him on Page One Sunday. (In that piece, it should be noted, the stately local broadsheet yet again failed to disclose that Red Sox principal owner John Henry also owns the paper. Or is the hardreading staff the only one who still cares about that kind of stuff?)
Jerry Remy? Jury’s still out.
Start with Gerry Callahan’s full-throated support in today’s Boston Herald.
Red Sox job is Jerry Remy’s call
At what point do you give up on a kid?
When exactly do you throw up your hands, turn your back and walk away from your own child?
Jerry and Phoebe Remy are the parents of a 35-year-old monster with a long history of hurting women — particularly pregnant ones — but they haven’t reached that point yet. Their son Jared is evil to the core, but they still visit him in jail. They presumably pay for his lawyers. They probably hope and pray he will once again come before a pliable Massachusetts judge and avoid the harshest penalties allowed by law.
Somehow this doesn’t sit well with many Red Sox fans who think Jerry Remy should no longer be allowed to sit in the NESN booth with Don Orsillo and talk about baseball.
But it sits okay with Callahan, who ends his piece this way: “Jerry Remy admits he made mistakes and he knows things will never be the same for Remdawg Inc. But he shouldn’t be stripped of his livelihood and sent home to stare at the walls. Jared should go to prison for the rest of his life. Jerry should go back to work, and, finally and at last, give up on his rotten, hopeless kid.”
Crosstown at the Globe, not everyone is so forgiving. Alan Wirzbicki in a point-counterpoint with Alex Beam:
[I]f Jerry Remy sold used cars, then maybe none of it would matter. The questionable decisions an employee makes with his own paycheck are usually his own business.
But Jerry Remy doesn’t sell used cars. His job is to be a particular TV persona — the gentle, chuckling color commentator on Sox games. Playing that role has made him popular. But now that’s not an image that he can project without turning New England’s collective stomach.
Now it’s Beam’s turn:
I understand that when most people read the story of Jerry and Jared, they see an entitled, well-off sports celebrity gaming the legal system on behalf of his wild and dangerous son. I see something different: a complicated, confusing morass, of biblical pain inflicted on a family that wants to balance its love for a disturbed child against society’s legitimate expectations of personal safety.
Jared is in jail, where he belongs. I’m sure his father and his family are living in a special kind of hell. If the sins of the son are visited on the father, well, that’s not what I call justice.
But it’s what a letter to the Globe editor does. Here’s Frank Hannon of Melrose:
CONCERNING THE return of sportscaster Jerry Remy to the booth as his son, Jared, awaits trial in the murder of his girlfriend: Perhaps charity demands that NESN be given the benefit of the doubt about what the network knew of the elder Remy’s role in the repeated enabling of his son. However, the Globe’s expose of the monumentally sordid circumstances of Jared Remy’s record removes all doubt (“For Jared Remy, leniency was the rule until one lethal night,” Page A1, March 23).
Who will be able to watch Remy without being reminded of the unimaginable havoc wrought by his son? Even for crass economic reasons alone, let alone the basic duty of social responsibility that NESN owes the community — and yes, there is such a thing — how can NESN possibly allow Remy to stay on the air?
If you’re looking for a tiebreaker, try the redoubtable Dan Kennedy at Media Nation. He has an interesting conversation going on in the comments thread.