‘No good deed’, as always…
If you have even a passing familiarity with the website Barstool Sports you probably are aware of the man behind the popular website, Dave Portnoy. While the site may trend too close to close to a frathouse mystique for some, Portnoy has at least made himself likable with a willingness to stand up to politically correct attempts at canceling him. He has not only shrugged off charges of insensitivity and sexism, he fights back.
One other reason to applaud him is that currently he has taken another stand. In this miasma of government over-control restaurants and bars are struggling mightily. Portnoy has started a fundraising effort to help out these businesses, called the Barstool Fund. Initially begun as a $500,000 venture it has swelled in popularity to now over $20 million and is still going. Portnoy has seen fit that dozens of businesses across the country have been receiving assistance to stay open and to pay employees.
One such eatery getting help was The Tadich Grille, a 170-year-old fixture in the Bay Area. You would be correct to say it is a great story that an institution like this is being helped — you also would not be working at the San Francisco Chronicle. When it became known that the historic eatery was receiving assistance from Barstool much had to be made of the controversies involving Portnoy over the years.
Follow along here. The Chronicle linked to a Daily Beast article that is well over two years old, it it details events with ESPN canceling a show with Barstool that happened a year prior to that, over comments that had been made three years earlier than that. So ultimately what were 6-year-old controversies, which had long been dealt with and moved past, now needed to be dredged up in the Chronicle piece detailing the great work in aiding a failing family business.
The family members behind the restaurant were compelled to comment on Portnoy’s past. ‘’(The owner) said the family was not aware of Portnoy’s history of making racist and misogynistic remarks or the accusations of sexual harassment against him. Wherever in his heart he had the ability to make a meaningful difference for small businesses, he’s doing that, and for that we’re grateful.’’
This is the mindset of many in our press pool these days. The Chronicle has to lash out, has to bring up wholly unrelated controversies, in a story concerning the needed help of a local business. Of course, going unsaid was The Chronicle supporting the lockdown orders that Portnoy is helping to combat. Even though the paper has recently recognized that the forced closures are leading to, as it reports, ‘’a restaurant apocalypse’’, it still felt the need to tear down the source delivering some needed relief and good news.