Friday, February 19, 2010

Tiger Woods' business: None of ours

I don't care if Tiger Woods is (was) one of the more revered athletes in sports today. Today's public apology, which ESPN went out of their way to bring in an "apology expert" to dissect, was unnecessary in my eyes. What is an apology expert anyway; someone who can tell if someone is legitimately contrite or not? If that's the case, I'd like to hire one for personal reasons. ESPN, I'll be in touch.

But I digress. Why does Woods have to come out and apologize to the media and the public? He is a professional athlete, and he isn't the first to cheat on his wife. I understand the wholesome, family image that he has portrayed in recent years and that he is trying to reconcile that. But he has no responsibility to apologize to the people who brought his "transgressions" into the public eye.

I had to turn off ESPN today (shocking, I know) because it was all Woods, all the time. This bears repeating: TIGER WOODS HAS NO RESPONSIBILITY TO THE MEDIA OR THE PUBLIC TO APOLOGIZE. His only responsibility is to his wife and his family, and that's it. I understand that he gets paid a lot of money to swing a long club at a tiny ball and endorse multiple products and services, but that doesn't mean he loses every right to privacy that the average American is allowed.

Woods was absolutely right when he said, "Personal sins should not require press releases and problems within a family shouldn't have to mean public confessions." Yet if he truly believed in his own words, why did he issue his statement this morning?

He felt the pressure coming in on him from all angles and he caved under that pressure. Instead of sticking to his guns and keeping his issues private, he came out and made a public statement. Sadly, it was a necessary step in the situation to pave the road for an eventual return to professional golf. But it shouldn't have to be this way.

Woods took time off from the game to attempt to fix his marriage (and spend time in sex rehab, the stupidest kind of rehab there is). He shouldn't have to answer to anybody if and when he wants to make a return. If Woods was a mortgage broker, would he have to hold a press conference within his company to apologize for his personal transgressions to get back to work? The answer is no, and the fact that his status as a highly-regarded professional athlete forces Woods' hands is just stupid.

Woods is not an elected official, as one of my friends so obviously pointed out to me. Nobody voted for him to be the top golfer in the world, so he owes nothing to nobody. If this was Barack Obama cheating on Michelle then yes, a public apology would be in order. But it's not.

I really hope that this is the last we have to hear of Tiger Woods' personal life, because it's personally none of my business. He's not the first person to cheat on his wife and he's not going to be the last. I don't care how popular he is, the man deserves to be left alone. Not only for his sake, but for his families' sake.

It seems like this has become more of a public issue than a private, family issue and that's just wrong. If the Woods family cannot recover from Tiger's disgressions, I believe the media and the public will be partially to blame. It has to be hard enough for Woods to fix the situation without having to fix his public image as well.

So I will say it again: leave the man alone and let him and his family work out their issues IN PRIVATE. Otherwise, this public scrutiny and media attention is going to lead to the downfall of a family, something we see too much of in today's society as it is. It's hard enough to fix a situation like this without public interference. And if the media really wants everything to work out for Woods, they will leave him alone from this point on. It's a true shame that won't happen.

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