We all know now that Michael Phelps smoked something in a bong, A-Rod took steroids, Obama smoked pot, and a few politicians "forgot" or "under filed" their taxes. All very serious mistakes and all illegal. I've posted my opinions on some of these subjects as have others. Yet, I was taken aback by the following email I received from Jed and his child Tilly,
I have a comment from my littlest (by two minutes), Tilly.
There was some discussion at school and he wants to know what is the difference between Phelps smoking pot, sports players taking steroids or our new president Obama smoking pot. I believe all were federal crimes yet one can not only keep his job but his job is to run the federal government. We also have a treasury secretary who I believe runs the IRS who successfully cheated on his taxes.
My answer: I guess the American people expected more from their sports fans then their president and other politicians. Why is there a double standard? Presidents also seem immune to perjury charges too.
The reason this took me aback was, it was right. It made me think why I cared about Phelps and A-Rod for doing wrong yet never really mentioned being miffed about the world leaders.
I thought about this a lot. I realized that it wasn't just me. When I looked at the mainstream media they too were more interested in swimmers and baseball players than world leaders and policy makers.
Then it hit me. People look at sports stars and see people playing games. Games most of us have played at one point in our lives. We get angry at them because in some cases they have cheated at the game. Nobody likes a cheater. Especially when a cheater makes bus loads of money. I think, deep down people fantasize that they could be the super star athletes and that we would never cheat, given the chance. So athletes are living out many, not all, people's childhood dreams.
I can't say I ever pretended to play President when I was a kid. I never picked my friends to be in my cabinet. I was never chosen last to be Secretary of Veteran Affairs. I don't recall playing with my Johnny West ACTION FIGURES and pretending to write the State of the Union speech.
We can't relate to the world leaders because we really don't know what they do. We know how to swim, play baseball, football, basketball, hockey, drive cars, go bowling and many other games. Is this backwards, maybe. But, that's just how it is and probably always will be.
I don't think it means we don't care that our current President has tried drugs or the last President was an alcoholic and the one before that was a horny old dog. We just can't understand how those actions will effect them doing their jobs. Not to mention that, aside from Clinton, the bad actions happened well before they became President.
I, myself, might bite my tongue the next time an athlete messes up. I will evaluate the actions they have done and see how they impact my life. But, if I can get a juicy blog out of it look out!