Tiger Woods: Morality and Celebrity

If you live in a desert cave, you may not know that Tiger Woods has gotten caught committing adultery with multiple women -a confession that led his wife to leave him, and led him to check into a sex rehab facility (you also wouldn’t be reading this blog, but use your imagination).  Today he is finally going to address the public after stepping away from the game of golf for a few months. 

The world is on pins and needles.

Of course, the outrage of this scandal comes from our dashed expectations of this good-guy superstar.  We expected that Tiger could do no wrong with his wide smile and 350 yard drives.  In our minds, Tiger was larger than life.  The problem is…he probably thought so too.  And although I believe that Tiger is capable of making his own decisions and is guilty of the decision to commit adultery, I wonder if we had created this fictitious alter-world for Tiger where he can do no wrong.

Just the other day while watching TV my wife says, “I don’t get why all of these rich celebrities always get free stuff.”  Ironic, but true.  People throw free things at celebrities all the time.  Maybe it’s an attempt to get an endorsement, or maybe we just want to make these “super people” happy.  On a concert stage little girls cry in an outburst of emotion when they even come close to a rapper who sings mostly about the sexual degradation of women.  When we have a civil problem we shine the spotlight batman symbol above our senator’s office in the hopes that they rid the world of evil-doers and economic decline.

Then…humanity strikes.

Martha Stuart cheats the market.

Chris Brown beats his girlfriend.

Mark Sanford rendezvous with a woman in Argentina.

As we fix our eyes on these celebrities in the hopes that our own lives would seem just a bit more interesting, Tiger Woods reminds us that celebrities are only human…nothing more…nothing less.  Morality is something that everyone struggles with: from adultery to white lies.  So as Tiger gives his apology as I’m writing this blog, remember what we’re putting our hope in, remember who we are trying to emulate.  The world is more than TV’s version of it.

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