Tiger, Tiger, burning bright

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Elizabeth Tenety, a young woman who blogs over on On Faith, laments Tiger Woods’ fall from grace, asking at the end of her post:

When will those in the spotlight learn that we’re counting on them? Can
our national heroes publicly sin and remain worthy of adoration?

The answers are 1) never; and 2) yes. If you don’t believe me, try Michael Wilbon, who has made a study of the subject. Actually, the truer answer may be that those who’ve been in the spotlight for longer than 15 minutes know that we are counting on them–to behave badly, and repent, and get on with their messy lives, or not. Where would American culture be without celebrity falls from grace and the ensuing soap operas? That’s what we adore. Go, Tiger, Go!

  • Jim Corl

    Tiger Woods is an extremely talented athlete with a huge personality. A golfer myself, I am one of his fans. When he first hit the pro tour, he played a tournament in the town where I was living. He was overheard making a rather nasty remark about our town, and because of rain, left the event early on Sunday. I worked that event for several years as a volunteer and thought at the time that he had been, in his young life, hanging around too many wealthy clubhouses. That kind of life, with its public adoration can lead to a way of being insulated from the reality that the rest of the world lives with. I feel bad for Tiger, more so for his family, but there is an opportunity before him right now, a teachable moment, where he can make an important adjustment in his life. His real metal will not be tested by what he did, but what he does with it. He has the opportunity to take a giant leap in character right now and I hope he makes the best use of it. I don’t worry about the religious conservatives and moralizers or what they say about him. They live in their own fairy land. Expecting perfection from human beings shows just how disconnected THEY are from reality.