Once upon a time a few people worked as gossip columnist. They trolled around trying to pry juicy secrets from people about the rich and famous. If you wanted gossip-you read their column. Now-it’s everywhere-it’s settled into the body of journalism like a virus.
What happened to reporting real news? When did everything become so salacious? It’s being enjoyed a bit too much-people are rubbing their hands together with glee while hanging out somebody’s dirty laundry. What happened to boundaries?
The latest bit of scandal involves the great Tiger Woods, and at last count, ten women. He’s fallen off that pedestal we propped him up on and crashed to earth. Why is everyone so shocked? Isn’t he human? Doesn’t part of being human include making mistakes? No one is perfect.
Society has this knack for building up athletes, politicians, or people in the entertainment industry to god-like status, and then becoming crestfallen when they stumble. Since when were the gods perfect? Do a bit of poking around in Greek and Roman mythology, you’ll find a few gods who were guilty of bad behavior. Zeus was the biggest philanderer! He seduced many women-goddesses and mortals-who bore him children.
So Tiger screwed up. Does he owe us an explanation? No. He owes his family an explanation. He must work things out with them. Everyone has the right to a personal life-everyone. That means handling family matters in private.
On December 2, 2009, Woods commented on his website about the current situation. The message in the first paragraph highlights the need to address family matters privately.
“I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart. I have not been true to my values and the behavior my family deserves. I am not without faults and I am far short of perfect. I am dealing with my behavior and personal failings behind closed doors with my family. Those feelings should be shared by us alone.”
Do you think that the press will respect the family’s privacy? No. It is absurd that he had to publicly address the need for privacy. A line’s been crossed that we may not be able to restore. These days, people are too eager to see others fail. It’s frightening.
Remember when Britney Spears was going through a rough time, she needed help, and instead was skewered in the media. A celebrity in rehab-now that’s big news! Forget about respecting the boundaries of the program-we want pictures and we’re going to get them now.
How about we pay more attention to what’s happening in our educational system. We need upgrades across the board. We need to reevaluate teaching methods, exams and grading; we need to upgrade facilities and equipment. We need to get our youth excited about learning and reading. We need to make a college education attainable for all nationalities.
How about we pay more attention to what’s happening to our soldiers in the military. What’s available to them when they finally get home? There should be a system in place for them to transition out of the military-a system that includes emotional support, job prospects, education, and medical coverage. Whatever they need to move forward should be available to them.
What’s going on with the elderly in this country; the homeless, the hungry, the orphaned? It’s hard to believe that there are children and adults who don’t have enough to eat, or a decent place to live.
Too much is happening in the world today that needs our attention. Enough about the rich and famous and who’s zoomin who. Let them deal with whatever they’ve created privately. Let us raise our intellectual curiosity toward the bigger issues in the world.