Role Models

I wanted to try something new today that I haven’t done before. It will require a couple of things from the reader to be any bit successful, and for that I request that if you enjoy this bit at all you comment your opinions or reblog it for others to see it and comment. (I promise this isn’t a ploy for followers only wanting success here).

So without further adieu I present a debate question. 

Question: Should athletes be considered role models?

My opinion: Look at what the players stand for. Who can honestly say that they have never had a sports hero? I in particular still have a Michael Jordan, Babe Ruth, and Mark McGwire poster in my own bedroom, and I am nineteen years old. I have idolized players both on and off the court or field for as long as I can remember. I’d whisper “and Tiger Woods has this putt left for the Masters” every time i would be on the practice green. I firmly believe there is a natural attraction to athletes that give us a hope as kids that we can be like them. We grow older watching them until they retire then we pick a new member of our favorite team, and talk about when “(insert name) hit that walk off home run in the 11th inning”.

The good ole days.

But, if we choose foolishly, our favorite players can really dig a hole in our heart as we watch turmoil of stupidity play out on a national stage. We can hear words like “I’m not here to talk about the past”, “I’ve made my share of mistakes”, or “I’m not the most believable guy right now”. (Mark McGwire, Tiger Woods, Lance Armstrong). We can get so wrapped up in the thoughts that they are superhuman that we forget that they are human, with human problems, and human mistakes. 

Where my opinion comes in is where you break down the whole role model idea. You can’t have a role model who hasn’t ever messed up. In taking one on, you have to be prepared for a halfway tainted view f them if something in the media surfaces that isn’t ideal. If you can honestly accept both their success and failures, then sports role models are perfect, and should be had by all. 

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Now it’s your turn to comment and tell me what you think! Even if you’re a person reading because my mom posted this to her Facebook (thanks mom) you can still comment. I want this to be fun, and the results will lead to whether or not I choose to do another debate forum. Thanks you for your time, the read, and participation with the Sports Dish. 

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4 thoughts on “Role Models

  1. I think your take on this issue is well rounded. The reality is that role models are human and humans make mistakes. I don’t think they are to be modeled after but definitely learned from. It’s the same for anyone in the lime light. If you are in the oven(spotlight) long enough you will burn at some point. Great take, Dev.

  2. Thoughtful piece here.

    In my opinion, athletes should be considered role models. However, our relentless approach to reporting makes it tough to justify this. What do we value in the people we look up to?

    In one regard, we look for a set of skills that we envy. Throwing or catching passes (etc., etc., etc.) at a world-class level is something at which we marvel. In that way, idolize away. It reminds of a time when we participated in sports, simply enjoyed playing.

    On the other hand, the people we envy for more intangible things (integrity, morality, etc.) tend to be people we know. This is a more malleable group because we see these men or women for the entirety of their beings: their successes and failures, their faults.

    Do professional athletes owe us anything? I think, yes, in a way. Sure, they’re human and prone to mistakes, but they should realize they’re in an enviable position, not just in what they do for a living, but how much money they make doing it. They should strive to contribute back into the society that gives them so much. And, in turn, we should be able to admire them for more than their ability to hit 400 feet home runs.

    1. Wow. Very well said my friend. I like how you separate the category of man and athlete, and I agree, it needs to be something we discern upon before taking a full diving into this idea behind role model. Thank you very much for your comment.

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