News and Notes

If I May, A Few Words on Tiger Woods

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Tiger Woods owes us nothing. Zip. Zilch. Nada. The fervor caused by his car accident, theories as to what really happened, and this quest to throw dirt on him is contrived and quite honestly boring. Tiger owes us putts, pars, bogeys, and driving it off the tee 315 yards at the Masters. He owes us whatever it is he puts forth on the golf course…and nothing more.

After he puts the 3-wood away for the day, that’s his time. I don’t really care how he spends it.  At day’s end, he has people he has to answer to, and it’s not you or me.

In no way, does Tiger’s dalliances deserve severe scorn…except from his family and in particular his wife Elin. That’s it. Johnny Columnist in Des Moines, Iowa, your 1400 word opus on why Tiger is bad for kids and people in general does not matter. Why? Because it’s none of our business.

Having spent time hanging out with athletes in social settings before, I can tell you that they are doomed. They are around people, places and things that are not conducive to the family unit. Women are thrown their way and women throw themselves at them. It’s an environment that equals fail for the family unit.

Eventually, everyone is going to have a bad night from the field if you put yourself in situations to fail. That’s what Tiger did. Did he use poor judgment? Yes. Are his actions a good example for kids? No. Yet, should he lose sponsorships because of what he did? No.

As Mike Wilbon astutely pointed out a few days ago, Tiger’s mistake is nothing new to the sports world. It’s happened before and it’s going to happen again to someone else. Ultimately, Tiger was setup to fail for a simple reason. He’s human. The track record of most high profile athletes/celebrities suggests a similar trait.

The role model argument? Nope. Parents, family, and friends are role models, not some athlete that you have no personal connection towards.

Sadly, a lot of us in society are hypocrites. Come hell or high water, we are going to support guys short of them committing a major crime. If you don’t believe me, look no further than the NBA. The number one selling jersey in the NBA at the moment is Kobe Bryant.

We all know what happened to Kobe a few years ago in Colorado. An MVP, two trips to the Finals and an NBA title later, he’s as popular as ever.

Kobe isn’t alone though.  Muhammad Ali, one of the most beloved figures in American sports history has been married four times including once to a young lady who was 17, when he was 25. Did this cripple the Ali legacy? He lit the torch at the 1996 Olympics.

People hold athletes to this mythically standard of perfection that is impossible to achieve. Plenty of men screw up relationships on a daily basis. Granted, this one is exposed to a few extra set of eyes than what Bob from around the block has to deal with.

Everyone should just understand that the concept of the athlete being this totally faithful husband is not a pipe dream but it’s in the neighborhood. Some of these guys mean well, but they are in an environment where relationship failure is the likeliest option.

To make a long story short, the ladies of Woods is not a news story. It’s just another brick in the wall. As Duke said during Rocky IV, “he’s a man, he’s not a machine.” Ladies and gentlemen, Tiger Woods is human. He’s just like you and I. He shares similar flaws to you and I. He just comes off the 18th tee at Augusta a hell of a lot better than you and I.

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