11/22/2004 Add a comment

So, Ron Artest has been suspended for the entire season thanks to his role in a player-fan melee. Was the punishment severe enough? Too severe? He did a very bad thing, to be sure. Players entering the stands and throwing haymakers isn't too cool. (Though neither is pelting players with food and ice and beer.) Artest is a notorious head case, who can't seem to control his emotions, which is sometimes a good thing on the court. His past suspensions may have caused NBA commish David Stern to give him more of a punishment than usual. (And maybe not enough of one, according to Michael Wilbon.)

But this seems like the classic parenting dilemma. Do you keep punishing a child with increased levels of punishment until they come around to it? This runs the risk of the child giving up and rebelling completely. Or do you try to nurture and bring them around without so much threat and force? This runs the risk of the child taking advantage of the parent. In any event, my guess is that it's a little of both, and the NBA should send Artest to counseling so that he's not stewing at home alone for the rest of the season. William