It’s a big surprise when somebody that everyone holds in such high regard becomes engulfed in a scandal like Eldrick “Tiger” Woods has. But it is really that big of a surprise? Did it really let you down? Given Woods’ squeaky clean image you probably didn’t imagine him banging chicks two at a time
I learned earlier in my life that not everything is what it seems. Starting with the revelation as a grade school-er that Santa Claus is alive only in spirit to Guns N Roses breaking up to the trading away or retirement of my childhood heroes of the Sixers, Phillies and Eagles, by now I’m used to being lied to and let down. You see it not only in the world of Sports but teachers, entertainers, politicians, CEO’s, religious authorities and even a couple Presidents have seen their share of scandals. People held up on such a pedestal, looked up to, admired and then ultimately their name dragged through the mud for sins which are routinely committed by everyday people who do not get the same treatment.
I understand to certain point about sex scandals involving Politicians. They are in a position of power and got there touting family values, a commitment to truth etc. I get the outrage about teachers who have sexual relationships with students and I certainly understand when a man of faith strays and molests a kid or embezzles money. The thing I have a problem with is the crazy amount of coverage the media has to spend on Sports Stars and the people who consume this tabloid junk in mass quantities.
You can make any sort of argument you want in favor of Athletes being role models but I’m of the Charles Barkley school of thought and will make my case against it. You see athletes are famous for being good at sports. For passing the ball, running the ball, kicking the ball, shooting the ball, hitting the ball, catching the ball and tackling the person with the ball. For the most part there is no holier than thou art attitude, there is no religious aspect or preaching from them, they cannot make laws and are not in charge of children except their own.
While Sports figures occasionally will hold political office after retirement and some will also praise a religious God before, during and after a game they are in effect in charge of nothing except their own athletic performance.Yes with a great athlete comes tons of money but just because a person has a lot of money doesn’t mean they are a role model. Just because you’re on T.V doesn’t make you a role model. Yes, athletes who get paid to endorse products like Woods and Jordan are presented by the media as good and upstanding but lets remember that these are commercials the athletes are appearing in. By associating their product with greatness on an athletic level is part of the lure.
So Tiger banged a bunch of girls while married, what baseball player doesn’t do that? I’m not advocating or absolving him of his infidelity but thousands of marriages break up every year due to infidelity. Chances are you know someone who was divorced due to infidelity or are the son or daughter of a marriage ruined due to mom or dad not being faithful. What is any different in Tiger Woods’ situation from any other marriage in shambles due to someone fooling around? Money, Fame for being great at Golf? I don’t think the amount of girls matters because one time/girl is cheating.
What I’m trying to say is that Athletes are people too, they make mistakes and they are human like you and I. They are not infallible because they are endorsing watches, hot dogs, cars, underwear or whatever product and just because they are great at their respective sport doesn’t make them a great person.
It’s OK to be a fan of a Sports Figure but putting them up on a pedestal, calling them a hero, having them as a role model for your children and generally wanting to be “Like Mike” will ultimately just end up letting you down in one way or another. I think Charles Barkley was right in saying, “… parents should be Role Models.”. Considering Michael Jordan and Barkley (who both allegedly cheated on their wives) are friends and role models for Tiger, why is anyone surprised by any of this?