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Out of Bounds

CJ Dudek, Sports Columnist

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Dennis Rodman has more or less the same credibility when it comes to foreign diplomacy as an inmate in Sing Sing.

This is a man that put on a wedding dress just to promote his book back in 1996. Rodman had an MTV show in which he interviewed guests from the comfort of his bed. Rodman has been to rehab, been caught driving whilst intoxicated, and been involved in multiple domestic violence incidents.

Yet all of that outward lunacy pales in comparison to Rodman’s recent visit to North Korea for the purposes of ‘basketball diplomacy.’ Over the weekend, the madman of the midway met with the madman of east Asia, Kim Jong Un, and said “As a person to person, he (Un) is my friend.”

To be fair, one has to put Rodman’s words in proper context. Many will misinterpret Rodman’s one-on-one meeting with Un as Rodman accepting Un’s rule of his people. In reality, Rodman’s interaction was just a fan admiring a great basketball player.

Even though that fan is a ruler of a country and Un treated the hall of famer better than any of the citizens he is in charge of.

It does not take John Kerry to tell you that, as a ruler of a country, Un has been far from exemplary. An article by BBCnews.com said that 3.5 million people have starved to death in North Korea since 1995. And the U.S. is still technically fighting the Korean War because a peace treaty was never signed after the 1953 truce ‘ended’ the war.

It is hard to figure out which is scarier, the fact that Rodman wants Obama and Un to talk about basketball, or that Rodman probably got closer to Un than anyone in U.S. intelligence in the last half century or so.

Seriously, in a CNN.com article, former Assistant Secretary of State, Stephen Ganyard, told ABC News, “There is nobody at the CIA who could tell you more personally about Kim Jong Un than Dennis Rodman, and that in itself is scary.”

It’s terrifying, actually. Nobody can take this meeting seriously because of the man who supposedly bonded with Un. Rodman gets his sanity questioned on a daily basis, and he is supposed to be the man who leads the U.S. to peace negotiations with an enemy government?

That is simply not going to happen. Not every international sports story will be Invictus. If Un wanted to bring the citizens of North Korea together and better his nation through some form of basketball diplomacy, he’d have to actually feed his people first.

While the principal of being the bigger nation and talking to your enemy may be noble, there are people in this world in which reason fails to reach them; and Un is one of those people incapable of reasoning.

And Rodman very well may be a person incapable of fully grasping reason, himself.

Although sports reporters from Chicago to San Antonio swear that Rodman has a good heart, most of them will not refute Rodman’s questionable sanity. If there is an athlete in the world who is to unify people for a cause, it is most certainly not a man who is regarded as one of the dirtiest players in NBA history.

Though Rodman has been making a fool out of himself for his entire professional life, it was inconceivable to think belittling diplomacy was in his arsenal. Dennis Rodman having an affair with Madonna, sure that’s possible. Professional athletes making an a-hole out of themselves happens every day.

But to pretend that there was any kind of good that came out of two insane man vying for the President of the United States to talk with them about basketball is just plain dangerous.

Now that Rodman has had his moment back in the spotlight, the men in the white coats can put him back in his straight jacket.

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