The Bounce
Doing it for the fans

James Small and the nature of his passing.


Last week James Small passed away at the age of 50. Cause of death was reported as a heart attacked. The nation mourned a rugby hero who was a key figure in South Africa's nation unifying 1995 World Cup triumph.

The end.

Well, no. Of course not.



Now I get what is happening here. There's more to the story, there's a juicy angle, there's something unexpected. But for me there are two things about this 'sex club' angle following James Small's passing.

It's so incredibly insensitive to those he has left behind. The guy has two kids, two kids who really don't need this in their lives together with the undeniable grief and suffering of losing a dad. I know newspapers and traditional media houses are struggling nowadays, but this smells of gutter journalism. It's opportunistic and desperate.

Friend and sports broadcasting veteran Darren Scott elaborates on this well in a recent Facebook post here.

'That's journalism' many will argue, it's shining a light on what happens out there. But there is always a human element that can be exercised, and it naturally wasn't here.

But then most importantly there is the second point. Who cares?

James Small went to a sex club. So what!

The guy is an adult, it may have been something he liked to do. There's no shame in that. Everyone does so-called 'weird' stuff in their life. So why is this a story?

Why in society are we so quick to judge people, meanwhile in the privacy of our own home our internet browser history is probably way more sordid than this establishment that Small was believed to have suffered a heart attack in.

People need to grow up. James Small was a rugby legend in society. That's what we cared about, that was his 'special thing' in life and that's how we will remember him. The fact he may or may not have enjoyed sex clubs on the East Rand of Johannesburg is such a non story.

I was on PornHub the other day. Simply perplexing how their home page is mostly about step brother / step sister / step mother sex scenarios. Is that the thing in porn nowadays? Maybe, and so be it, who am I to judge.

Oh, right, I was on PornHub, do you care? Will that make you no longer want to read this blog or follow me on social media?

Of course not, you don't care. 

So even though I am way more insignificant than James Small in the public, the same should apply. We all live our lives differently, but we all deserve to be seen in a positive light. If James Small was in an underage sex club, was the king pin of a drug syndicate and died on a pile of blood stained money that was extracted from a cash in transit vehicle, then sure, let's probe the story.

But it wasn't, so let's just exercise a bit of common sense in how we see our fellow man. If you want to judge people for how they spend their personal time, submit your unedited browser history first and testimonies from ex-lovers, then you can do the whole 'holier than thou' routine.

Even then, you will only come across as a prick, so don't bother.

Rest in peace James, you lived a life that people will remember, and you inspired people to do positive things or in the very least just feel good about being a rugby fan.

That's all that really matters right now.

Tags: james small, james small death, james small rapport, darren scott james small


Who will win the Rugby World Cup?
New Zealand
South Africa

bj 2