There have been a rash of negative repercussions from the use of social media here in the Kansas City area in the last few months. First it was the Kansas Jayhawks football vs basketball scuffles, with a blow-by-blow narration from sophomore guard Tyshawn Taylor. Then it was the Larry Johnson fiasco.
Johnson, best known as a middle-of-the-pack talent who benefited from a Chiefs offensive line studded with All-Pro talent, finally let his mouth write a check his modest talents couldn’t cash. After several Tweets in which he lambasted Chiefs coaches, with a few gay slurs thrown in for good measure, he received a two-week suspension. While he only missed one game due to a bye week for the Chiefs, his continued unpopularity led to a 32,000+ signature petition demanding he not be allowed to become the Chiefs’ all-time leading rusher, a mark he was within 75 yards of reaching. This morning, the Chiefs announced his release.
Personally, I think he should have been given his walking papers following the second incident, but that was under a different coaching and management staff. Rookie head coach Todd Haley no doubt had to assert his authority in this matter.
Interestingly enough,though, it wasn’t the problem of him attacking women that finally led to his release, it was his reckless use of social media, demonstrating yet again the real power of these platforms. Johnson clearly didn’t understand the ramifications of his tweets, and as a result he now finds himself unemployed (albeit still incredibly wealthy).