Damon BruceThe Richie Incognito flap has left a lot of people upset. Some are mostly upset at Incognito. Others (including yours truly) have turned their anger toward the Miami Dolphins organization for creating a culture where harassment, extortion and intimidation in the name of “toughness” are allowed, if not encouraged. I talked to someone today who’s simply tired of the whole story, and that person certainly isn’t alone.

But some believe that there’s something wrong with Jonathan Martin, because he’s a large adult man who supposedly should’ve stood up to Incognito’s behavior with verbal and/or physical force. These people think the NFL is a rough, uncaring world that Martin couldn’t or refused to handle.

Damon Bruce took it further, declaring loudly that the NFL and sports in general is a man’s world (cue James Brown).

Bruce has taken a fair share of criticism this week from those who believe his stance on Martin is insensitive or even irresponsible. Bruce lashed out at the critics today in a rant that painted his detractors as too sensitive or feminine.

I wasn’t able to listen to Bruce today because I was in Santa Clara listening to 49ers coordinators instead, but BASG writer Wendy Thurm came through with several quotes from the first hour of Bruce’s Thursday show.

“I am re-masculating sports.”

“I plant a flag back in sports for the boys.”

“Sports has lost its way because women are giving directions.”

“I’m willing to share my sandbox as long as you realize you’re in MY sandbox.”

“Ultra-feminine opinions interjected into the world of sports.”

“If sports injuries are too gruesome for you, go write a restaurant column.”

“Everyone’s coming to my view of Incognito … that Jonathan Martin can’t handle a professional locker room environment.”

“I know how professional sports works.”

“I see these tweets by LOLKNBR and @hangingsliders. That’s Wendy Thurm. I like Wendy Thurm. I’ve had her on my show. She’s very smart. She knows baseball. I enjoy her contributions to the sport she covers.”

“But very few small handful of women who are very good at this at all.”

“Message for all the women, all the guidance counselors, the sensitive males … all of this world of sports, especially the world of football, has a setting. It’s set to men. Women, ladies, sensitive guys, you can observe, be offended, report on it all. But we’re not changing it for you.”

“It’s a man’s world. Guys can get away with locker room talk.”

“Ladies, don’t think you’re re-writing the rule book for us. Don’t think we’re going to your sensitivity training.”

“It’s unfair in the world of men. You’ll learn that early.”

“Sports are set to the dial of men. And I’m not going to allow it to be changed.”

“That’s why guys like Richie Incognito exist. Jonathan Martin is distracting in the locker room more than Incognito.”

“You are all high and overly sensitive.”

“I’m willing to share my sandbox as long as you realize you’re in MY sandbox.”

If you follow some of the same people I do on Twitter, you’re aware that Bruce’s comments pissed a lot of people off. However, I’m not surprised that Bruce went on the offensive (no pun intended) today for a few reasons.

— Bruce has thin skin. Just ask Rich Lieberman. (This hardly makes him unique among Bay Area radio hosts, by the way.)

— Bruce doesn’t care one bit about women listening to his show, and has even said as much in the past. Jeff Kent once said “the money lies in the RBIs.” In sports talk radio, the money lies in male listeners age 25-54. That’s why Bruce said, “Sports are set to the dial of men.”

— Bruce is in the midst of the only three-way (“Yes!” – Kate Scott voice) battle in local sports talk radio, as his show is on at the same time as both KNBR 680’s “Fitz and Brooks” and 95.7 The Game’s “The Wheelhouse.” As angry as people were today at his comments, attention is what he seeks. He’s a radio host. The two most successful people in his industry, if we move beyond sports, are Howard Stern and Rush Limbaugh. During a relatively slow week for Bay Area sports chatter (no baseball games or signings of note; NBA/NHL just got started; 49ers came off a bye), the Incognito/Martin story fell into Bruce’s lap and he made a decision as a host to put all his chips in the “let’s cater to manly-men who think only wimps get bullied” basket.

Clearly the opinions of women are just as valid as men, whether we’re talking about sports or anything else. I couldn’t disagree more with Bruce’s stance on Martin’s culpability in what happened to him, but Bruce has a right to his opinion. My biggest problem with his on-air content this week was that in sticking up for a bully, Bruce used a bullying tactic of his own by discounting opposing views not just as inferior, but in a way that paints those views as “less than” because they’re somehow less masculine, and supposedly femininity doesn’t have a place in the locker room or on the airwaves. So in effect he was playing to the audience of those already in his back pocket — dude-bros who talk about things like “man caves” and “man cards” without a hint of irony.

Bruce is a talented radio performer, but if he wants to broaden his audience he might want to work on opening up the conversation to fans who may not already be huge fans of his. But then again, what do I know — KNBR 1050 will probably play clips from his comments above in promos to advertise his show for the next six weeks.