I completed my morning ritual this morning by opening my email in box and was greated by a fellow bloggers article from yardbarker.com. Kevin Ferguson of sidelion report (www.sidelionreport.com) positioned himself and was put on the internet as defending Michael Phelps, and telling the world to leave him alone.
I on the other hand, have a different take on the issue. Michael Phelps captured the hearts of America and the World over the last two Olympic games by capturing a record after record en route to his record number of gold medals. He instantly became the role model for millions, and probably revitalized interest in the sport of competitive swimming.
Like it or not, his actions in and out of the pool are a reflection of his character, and will be mimicked by those trying to be like Mike. With his sponsors saying it is a non-issue, they are basically telling the world, its alright to smoke a little marijuana – even though its illegal.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not proposing we strip Michael Phelps of his medals, and shame his name for eternity, I agree with Kevin on that. He did not cheat to get his medals, he won them fair and square. What he did do though was act like an ass, and got caught doing something illegal. While all the Carolina police may have is hearsay evidence (can you really tell there was some Mary Jane in the pipe in the picture?), and pending a drug test they may not be able to charge him, but I give them credit for investigating it. Just because he is a world reknowned star doesnt mean he should be allowed to get away with it. But he should be punished accordingly. If we look the other way for a little marijuana, whats next?
My honest thoughts on the matter though? Is it really Michael Phelps in the picture? When I first saw it I thought it bore a resemblance, but couldn’t tell for sure it was him.
The Bills want players of character for a reason. They don’t want the bad PR that comes with players like T.O., Pac-Man Jones, etc. The Pittsburgh Steelers have proven that you can win while chasing down players with character. We shouldn’t just look the other way when super stars do the wrong thing.
You can read Kevin’s full article at http://www.yardbarker.com/olympics/articles/Michael_Phelps_and_Lawrence_Taylor_How_Things_Do_Change/498181