This. This is what the media is doing every single day. They are choosing to draw our attention to certain things, phrase them in certain ways, all to sensationalize something that is likely extremely trivial and mundane. Because, who wants to see and hear about the boring, everyday Explorer?
I am marginally disappointed with the Olympics media coverage, but gargantuanly disappointed with the "lay persons" response to it. Most of these announcers and reporters are tried and true. They are good people, with good hearts. I challenge any one of us to get on air and speak constantly and interestingly while remaining 100% PC. It's not possible. You will slip. You will phrase something incorrectly. You WILL offend someone. We can all find slip ups, things to be offended about, Explorer's...if that's where we've turned our attention. I absolutely don't want to downplay real issues that exist in our society, but I also find it extremely exhausting that we are trying to find Rosa Parks at every single bus stop. The way history tells it, she actively pursued civil rights. This was her passion. She chose to be involved in multiple organizations and movements. She searched for the right moment and seized the opportunity to change a societal norm, in a fantastic and necessary way. These are athletes. And sports announcers. Not societal revolutionaries.
As you may (or may not) have noticed, it is actually less frequent than you'd expect for the team captain of each sport to be the most decorated athlete. It is hard to concentrate, train day in and day out, be guided by your passion and drive in a sport, while also being a motivational speaker and exemplary human. As an elite athlete myself, I remember constantly being reminded by our coaches not to wear our warm ups or any team apparel when going out to the bars (which was also adamantly discouraged from doing, and that any belligerent behavior, no matter our apparel is not condoned nor tolerated in any capacity.) We were reminded regularly that, though we may not want the attention, we will get it. That it's our responsibility to represent the most upstanding and morally correct human behavior at all times. My high school coach held me back from Senior Nationals one Summer, because, though I did not have one single sip of alcohol, I was guilty by association. I followed my friends, I didn't speak up, I did not behave at the level appropriate for an "athlete of my caliber" as they say. I'm not sure I have ever been so heart broken, one of the toughest lessons I have ever learned, and I'm not sure I ever completely agreed with the severity of that punishment. But I had to suck it up and learn that, as Uncle Ben so famously taught us, "with great power comes great responsibility". And, just as Peter Parker made a few mistakes before he knew what to do with himself. And, at moments, was angry with the "gift" he'd been given and the responsibility that landed on his shoulders. He too, had to learn to deal with his mistakes. Wouldn't you rather do this privately, and not under the scrutiny of all the world?
|(OK, maybe sometimes we like a little bit of the lime-light: I was the IU record-holder of most NCAA All-American Honors at one point (with 13). Record hold in the 100 fly briefly, as well. Ahh. The good ol' days.)|