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Look at Tony Stewart 'incident' objectively
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Last comment by JimmyMack 3 months, 1 week ago.

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I’ve been reading my Facebook feed with growing disdain the past two days. I get it -- innocent until proven guilty. Really, I do. But isn’t anyone even going to entertain the notion that Tony Stewart MIGHT have hit fellow driver Kevin Ward Jr. on purpose?

Everyone seems to be automatically running to his defense – claiming right off the bat that it was an “accident,” that Ward was stupid and “deserving” because he walked out onto a dark track, that people need to leave Stewart alone and quit badgering him because what happened could’ve happened to anyone and he’s very distraught over it.

OK, I’m willing to believe any of those statements might be true. I’m also willing to believe Tony Stewart did it on purpose – a scenario no one else seems open to.

I’m not a NASCAR fan and I don’t know much about its participants, so Tony Stewart and his perceived innocence or perceived guilt mean nothing to me. Honestly. Actually, I DO hope it was an accident. I’d hate to believe we live in a world where a guy would so quickly take another man’s life over basically nothing. Nothing.

But the fact of the matter is, Tony Stewart is a hothead who is legendary for his blow-ups and temper tantrums. And if you watch the video of the incident (yes, I did), you’ll hear that he revved the engine before his car made contact with Ward. Onlookers and witnesses attested to the same thing. Also, there was a yellow caution flag out. Why would you need to be revving your engine if you should be slowing down? Sounds fishy to me.

For those who say Stewart is very upset over what happened – well, of course he is. He could be facing a trial and prison. Is he going to act nonchalant? No way. Is he truly upset over the loss of Ward’s life? Or is he upset about what he may have gotten himself into? Either way, it would look even more awful on his part if he wasn’t distraught, so who would expect anything else? Saying he’s upset is NOT an excuse and it’s NOT a sign that he’s innocent.

Getting out of your car and walking out onto a dark track is stupid. There’s no doubt about that. Do we all do stupid things every day? Yep. Do we deserve to die for our mistakes? If you’re crossing a street against the light and an oncoming car spots you in plenty of time, the driver likely will slam on his breaks. No, the driver shouldn’t have had to do that. You’re an idiot for crossing against the light. But that doesn’t mean the driver can justify hitting you by saying, “You know, I saw that pedestrian and had plenty of time to stop and avoid hitting him, but he wasn’t following the rules of the road, so he deserved to die. And that’s why I hit him.” Sounds a little ridiculous, huh?

And finally, think about this: Why isn’t Stewart behind bars?! If you or I (or Kevin Ward Jr.) had hit and killed Tony Stewart with our car (on accident or otherwise), would we be walking around free right now? Nope. I highly doubt it. We’d be jailed, awaiting the outcome of the investigation, likely slapped with an involuntary manslaughter charge of some type, with other charges pending.

People are arrested, tried and sentenced for offenses that are less serious than this. People need to STOP acting like professional “athletes” are deities and jumping to their defenses! Sure, there are plenty of good ones out there, but an athlete’s celebrity status does not mean he or she cannot be held accountable for their actions. This is seriously unbelievable and infuriating.

I’m not convicting Tony Stewart in a court of public opinion. I’m just asking everyone out there to see this situation for what it is and understand that he could be guilty just as easily as he could be innocent.

Latest Activity: Aug 11, 2014 at 4:11 PM

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gacpl commented on Monday, Aug 11, 2014 at 16:36 PM

watch the video for yourself.

gacpl commented on Monday, Aug 11, 2014 at 16:54 PM

the guy clearly ran way to far into the track, the sudden rev of the engine happened as he was hit, it could have been caused from the sudden movement of the car hitting him. i did not hear it rev before like he was trying to hit him or even scare him. as far as arresting him, the cops on the scene made the call from the evidence they seen there. they also consider that he is not a real flight risk.

JimmyMack commented on Monday, Aug 11, 2014 at 18:07 PM

@HM: You sure seem to know Tony's 'bad boy' rep. He's been a crier and a whiner for a long time. I don't know if he is 'at fault' or 'not at fault' this tragedy. However, he is involved in a sport in which people DO die. (Dale Earnhardt, Fireball Roberts, Lyle Petty, to name just a few.) Same as Boxing where some boxers are killed in the ring during or after a fight. Or the NFL where careers are ended with questionable hits. Some resulting in career ending injuries (ruined knees, concussions, and in some cases total body paralysis.) I don't know if anyone has been killed playing hockey in the NHL but they have fights that had they occurred outside the arena would be classified assault and battery, yet the fights are allowed even encouraged!

Yeah, I heard things that Tony accelerated before hitting the man with his right rear tire section, but that is done when approaching a curve. Doing it under a yellow flag? I don't know.

I guess what I am saying is lets see how the NASCAR honchos say it shakes out before letting the men and women with badges come in to play.

JimmyMack commented on Monday, Aug 11, 2014 at 18:14 PM

Personally, I think it is just a matter of time until someone dies form competing in the Ultimate Fighting Championships.

To wax philosophic: We Americans have a love affair with violence. We like Knock outs, we like car wrecks, we like Baseball bench clearing brawls etc.

We are IMHO we are a violent warlike people.

timeontarget commented on Wednesday, Aug 13, 2014 at 06:59 AM

JJ Yeley, a NASCAR driver who has driven sprint cars for Stewart, told the Sporting News that the fact you can hear Stewart hit the gas in his car prior to hitting Ward should be taken into the context of how sprint cars operate.

“They have a solid rear axle, they don’t turn on a dime,” Yeley said. “You usually turn those cars with the gas. … They don’t just turn as soon as you turn the wheel. It does take the throttle to do that.”

Yeley said that if Stewart would have turned the wheel sharply without getting on the throttle, the car would have continued in the path it was going or would have spun. He compared it to riding a jetski, where throttle is needed when making a turn.

“The right side wing panel comes down sometimes below your eye level so you will have a blind spot. … There’s a part there where you wouldn’t see someone if they jumped out and got that close to the car,” Yeley said.

JimmyMack commented on Thursday, Aug 14, 2014 at 11:39 AM

Well, as one that is admittedly self aware of: liking to see 'Mike Tyson' type knockouts at any and all the weigh in levels, one who waits for the big crash that happens more and more with the Boys that drive fast and only turn left, one who doesn't change the channel when a hockey fight breaks out or a bench clearing brawl that occurs during a baseball or basketball game, I consider myself a relatively sane individual as long as none of the confrontations results in the death of someone.

But, we don't know if somebody is going to get killed or not while not turning our heads away from a car wreck, do we?

So: We watch. We don't turn away.

JimmyMack commented on Thursday, Aug 14, 2014 at 16:51 PM

Being an aggressive race car driver is not a crime. Death occurs. It is a dangerous sport. I don't feel Stewart should be charged with any criminal offense. Ward got out of his car and angrily walked onto a track with speeding cars going around it. He placed himself in harms way.

The most that I can possibly foresee happening is Stewart receiving some possible sanctions from NASCAR for maybe not adhering to the yellow flag slow down sufficiently.

And NO. I do not like Stewart. I think he is one of the biggest hotheaded jerks in NASCAR.

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