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Opinion

Celebrities falling from grace reminds fans they are human

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December 10, 2009

I’m sure the last thing you might want to read about is Tiger Woods, and the events that have taken place in the past two weeks. Since my good pal Derek Johnson is covering my beloved sports team this week, I thought I might examine how people admire “famous persons,” from professional athletes to Hollywood celebrities.

There is nothing wrong with looking up to these people as role models, but it seems all too often people damn near worship the ground they walk on. 

Admittedly, it’s sad when someone you look up to does something disappointing (winner for obvious statement of the month), whether it’s breaking the law, or something people might consider immoral and wrong.

A lot of these people think that they are above the law and untouchable. Quite often they don’t even have to break the law to show that they think so highly of themselves.

Look at Tiger Woods’ situation. I’ve always greatly respected Tiger Woods as an athlete and person, and I think a lot of people, before these last few weeks, would have agreed that he is the prime example of a “perfect role model.”

All his situation has shown, or should have shown us, is that truly everyone makes mistakes, and no one, despite their image, is perfect. Some people think his actions should end his career, while others think that it should be soon forgotten. The only thing that his “situation” makes me think/feel, is just straight up confusion and frustration.

Honestly, man, you have quite literally everything. Not only are one of the most beloved athletes of our time, but you have the wife, kids, house, career, fame, and not to mention, millions upon millions of dollars.

Why would you risk it all on these “alleged” impulses to do something that, considering what’s at stake, clearly isn’t worth the risk? 

On the other hand, there is no way I’m going to smack the gavel on Tiger. I feel that the media is really, really good at making people incredibly judgmental and negative. Seriously, can you imagine having everyone in the nation keeping an eye on every little significant thing you do? There’d be nothing to worry about, right? We’re all innocent and have never done anything wrong that’s news worthy.

I can’t imagine the feeling of frustration and anger with someone trying to weasel their way in to your life, tweaking every detail in hopes that it might be the next big story. Sure, there are media outlets out there that are objective about the whole thing, but it’s not really objective when you have a “television news show” that has a split screen four ways discussing their “opinions” on how and why you’re a bad person.

Why do people care so much about what these “celebrities” are doing? Why would you invest so much emotion and care into what someone else does with their life? If it’s a charitable ordeal, or something like that, then that’s obviously different.

Curiosity isn’t a bad thing, but when someone else’s life becomes an obsession, and sadly, in today’s paparazzi world, a living, I personally think it’s wrong on many levels.

This mentality of “I’m untouchable” can be seen all over the place. Look at Chad (Johnson) Ochocinco. Week in and week out he’s engaging in “shocking” behavior. 

As an NFL fan, it ticks me off when he does these publicity stunts because I feel that it damages the integrity of the game, but what’s it saying to young athletes and people that look so highly upon these superstars? Ochocinco is being fined week after week for tens of thousands of dollars, but still continues to engage in the same behaviors. I feel like this sends a message of “go ahead and do whatever you want, because if you’re good at something, no one will care what you do, right or wrong.”

I’m not saying that’s what everyone is going to get/take from someone like Ochocinco’s actions, but that doesn’t take away from fact that continues violate the different conduct rules of the NFL without a care in the world, and all he gets is a slap on the wrist.

To say that young minds aren’t affected, consciously or subliminally, by something like this would be ignorant considering all the exposure and merchandise the “youth” today are involved with anything from clothing to video games. 

In the end it’s a big debate that will always have many sides about how certain actions should be viewed, punished and dealt with. Obviously, I think certain situations with these celebrities should be dealt with accordingly regarding the severity of the situation.

However, some people might consider Tiger’s actions worse than Michael Vick’s years ago. All of a sudden, we’re back to square one of the argument.