(most definetly the wrong Love Child)

The Memphis Commerical-Appeal’s Geoff Calkins has received a letter or two questioning his judgement in writing an article about Memphis G Darius Washington Jr. fathering a boy out of wedlock. Calkins responded thusly,

An educator wrote and said, in most discussions about education in Memphis, unwed pregnancy is the “elephant in the middle of the room.”

Is it wrong to say, hey, look at the elephant?

I think we should look at the elephant.

That’s why I wrote what I did.

More often, sports writers ignore the kids toddling around college gyms and locker rooms. Or maybe there’s a glancing mention deep in a feature story.

That’s how we treated DeAngelo Williams and his son for the last couple years.

Nobody wrote about it head on.

We wrote about DeAngelo’s smile, and his car, and his mother’s fight with breast cancer.

But not his son.

Because that’s wading into deep water, there, and isn’t it easier just to ignore the little guy?

It always bothered me that we did that. Because illegitimacy is an epidemic, especially in our town.

So when I learned that Darius also had a child, when I realized that the two biggest stars at the University of Memphis are single dads, it seemed like the time to tell you what I knew.

The idea was never to glorify Darius, as some of you suggested. His own father called the issue “a black cloud” on society. Darius and his girlfriend cried when they learned she was pregnant. Where’s the glory in that?

But Darius didn’t urge her to have an abortion. He didn’t flee from his responsibilities.

He showed up through the pregnancy, showed up at the hospital and has shown up ever since.

Isn’t that part commendable? Wouldn’t the city be a better place if every father did that?