So I am trying not to read any more articles about Ryan Braun or Alex Rodriguez, but they are like train wrecks that I can’t turn away from….and I feel bad because of it.
For those of you who are not sports fans, these two gentlemen are the latest poster children for steroid use and cheating in professional sports, and they have dominated the sports news for at least a month now.
Naturally I have some things to say about them.
Listen, I’m fully aware that people cheat in sports, and I’m also fully aware that our sports “heroes” are often much-less than we would like them to be. The fact that these two players, and quite frankly hundreds like them, chose to use steroids to improve their performance does not shock me. I wish I lived in a world where this kind of behavior shocked me, but I don’t. Daddy didn’t raise an idiot and I know there will always be those who try to gain an unfair advantage….in sports…in business…in life.
However, there is something about their behavior that still surprises me, and I’m not really sure why it does. Despite overwhelming evidence that they did, indeed, cheat, they still insist on their innocence, and in some cases rile against the system that is crucifying them publicly.
Can you say ego?
The worst case I have witnessed was Lance Armstrong, who went so far as to financially ruin former friends who dared to speak out against him when in fact he had cheated and later admitted to cheating.
Can you say ego?
What is tragic about all of this is the fact that American sports fans are a reasonably forgiving group. If someone just admits to doing wrong, eventually the public will forgive and forget. Heck, the same can be said for politics….Bill Clinton comes to mind….I think that the public is just looking for some accountability, an admission that yes, this person screwed up and yes, they are trying to do better.
We are all imperfect, but I have found from personal experience that being honest is encouraged and happily accepted. I have written often about my alcoholism and the damage I did back in my drinking years. I was selfish and spiteful and I hurt people….and the reception to my articles about those days has been remarkable. People have accepted me with open arms and supported me, and I think part of the reason is because they just want to know that people are being honest with them, and I have been brutally honest.
So yes, Mr. Braun and Mr. Rodriguez, your insistence on skirting the truth and acting as though you have been wronged bothers me on several levels.
And yes, those of you out there who find it so hard to be honest, your behavior also bothers me, and I really think you are missing an opportunity to be accepted for who you are rather than who you would like us to believe you are.
Have a great weekend my friends!
“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”