Friday, February 19, 2010

How sincere

Troops are dying in Afghanistan, tens of millions of Americans are out of work and some nut flew a plane into an IRS building, but the BIG news this week is that Tiger Woods went before a TV camera and apologized for being lower than whale poop. The other night, with all that is going on in the world, ABC News' lead story was that Tiger was going to talk about his well-publicized, self-inflicted problems. Not that he WAS talking, but that he was GOING to talk. That's a sad statement about what passes for news judgment these days. And this wasn't even what one would typically consider to be a news conference. Tiger was going to read from a written statement and was refusing to answer any questions. It was all very self-serving, but most of the news media treated it as if Moses were coming down from the mountain to issue 10 more commandments. On Friday, Woods spoke for about 15 minutes. I can sum it up for you this way: Tiger is "deeply sorry" for his "irresponsible and selfish behavior." He has let us down. His wife didn't hit him with a 5-iron. He's not going to answer any questions about the status of his marriage. He's getting back into his Buddhist faith. He's going for more therapy. And he plans to return to golf someday. No @#$%, Sherlock. Does anybody really think Tiger is going to skip the Masters in April? Really, those were the only noteworthy statements in his entire speech. Only a handful of writers and a single TV camera were invited to this self-serving event. To its credit, the Golf Writers Association of America declined to send any of its members. Certainly, Woods has the right to set whatever ground rules he wants, but reporters don't have to be a part of the charade. The reaction of some media personalities was ridiculous. George Stephanopoulos of ABC said the speech was “one of the most remarkable public apologies ever by a public figure." Go overboard much, George? And golf analyst David Feherty of CBS said, "The vast number of people just want their Tiger Woods back." No, David. The vast majority of people really don't give a damn whether they ever see Tiger Woods again. Their lives just aren't that shallow. But CBS, I'll bet, really wants its Tiger Woods back, because he's the meal ticket for that network's golf coverage. I give credit to Rick Cerrone, the former public relations director of the New York Yankees. He saw through the BS and told CNN, "What I saw was arrogance. It was basically an infomercial." It's early, but I'd give the award for stupidest reaction to Debert Cook, publisher of African American Golfer's Digest, who said, "I think we are entering a whole new era spiritually and emotionally for Tiger Woods." Pardon me while I puke. The Onion gave the speech the gravity that it deserved, putting up a story with the headline, “Tiger Woods Announces Return to Sex." As always with Tiger Woods, it's all about Tiger Woods. And I'm guessing that I'm not the only one who believes that if Tiger hadn't gotten caught, he'd still be hitting the sack with as many cocktail waitresses as he could get his hands on.

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Blogger PRIguy said...

I too was disgusted with the way the media handled this crap. I heard a guy on the radio here this morning say that ESPN was running promos for this like they would for the Super Bowl. I refused to watch the spectacle and Brant's post was the first thing I've read about it. I won't debase myself like that.

I could give two s**ts about Tiger and his infidelity. For that matter, I could give two s**ts about golf in general. What pisses me off is that he's using a pseudo-addiciton as an excuse for being a philandering ass. If he winds up a broke caddy, I won't care.

One more thought...why in the hell is there an African American Golfer's Digest? You can put that one in the same group as Miss Black America, the United Negro College Fund and the NAACP for organizations that perpetuate racism - from the other side.

February 19, 2010 at 5:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that the interest in Woods and his dallying is overblown, but I don't agree with the self-righteous fools who condemn him and question the genuineness of his appearance today. Who among us hasn't made a mistake, hasn't done something we later regretted, hasn't always done the right thing even when we knew that what we were doing was wrong? Yes, Woods read from a statement that he may not have written himself, but to me, the sentiments appeared to be genuine. I think he realizes he screwed up and is now wrestling with inner demons that he may or may not eventually defeat. But he showed guts in appearing today -- more guts than John Edwards and Bill Clinton and god knows how many other millions of men and women who have been caught in the act and denied it.

And he was right not to take questions from reporters, who from the beginning of this mess have not been interested in what really might have happened, but in what they thought had happened and how the vaunted Tiger would be booted from his pedestal.

Woods is not the first man or woman who has had an affair, and he will not be the last. Woods may or may not learn from this, but one thing is certain: The day after Tiger ran his car into that tree, some other married person was in the bed of someone he or she was not married to. Woods is no better nor worse that the others.

Did you ever hear the song "The Cheater?" The tag line is "He's gonna build you up just to let you down." Well, it applies here, but not to Woods. No, i applies to the media and everyone else who loves to elevate people to hero status, then join in the frenzy when the "hero" proves to be human.

February 19, 2010 at 10:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's the same "I been bad, boo hoo, forgive me' speech spouted by all the others caught in sex and/ or money scandels. Sorry? You bet he's sorry - not for all the good times but for all the money he's losing from cancelled endorsements. I hope those big companies don't fall for his calculated apology.

Another entertaining post- and right on the mark, Brant!

February 20, 2010 at 12:02 AM  
Blogger Brant said...

I think this whole "sex addiction" thing is BS. If a single guy has sex with a half-dozen different women over a six-month period, no one would think he had anything other than a normal sex drive. He might not be the most morally grounded person, but there's nothing physically or mentally wrong with him. But when a married guy gets caught shagging a bunch of sleazy broads, suddenly he has an "addiction." One of the Pittsburgh TV stations did a piece with counselors who work with "sex addicts," and one of the counselors said almost all of his clients are men, and almost all of them come to him because, a) they got caught screwing around on their wives, or, b) they got in trouble with the law for some sex violation. I think that proves my point.

February 20, 2010 at 7:33 AM  
Blogger Brant said...

Here's another good one to come out of the Tiger fiasco. One of his alleged mistresses, Veronica Siwik-Daniels, says she deserves a face-to-face apology from Tiger because of the unwanted attention he has brought her, because, in her words, "I did not deserve this." For the record, Siwik-Daniels is a former porn actress whose credits include the classic "Big Breasted Nurses." She also previously claimed that Tiger impregnated her twice, with one pregnancy ending in miscarriage and the other through an abortion. Also, she watched Tiger's speech with her attorney, the ubiquitous Gloria Allred. Why would she need an attorney? Hmmmmmm. Let's sum this up. This is a woman who took money to do gawd-knows-what in porno films. She carried on an affair with one of the most famous people on the planet. She aborts a pregnancy, apparently for her own convenience. She hires one of the most famous lawyers in the country. And she has no problem talking to the media about her dirty deeds. And she's complaining about unwanted attention? Gimme a break. She also had the gall to say, "I am sorry for my part for any of (Tiger and his wife's) pain, but you can't help who you fall in love with." Come on. It may be true that you can't help who you fall in love with. But you can control whether you have sex with a married man who has two small children.

February 20, 2010 at 8:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Rick Cerrone hit the nail on the head - it was arrogance pure and simple. The same arrogance that prompted Woods to essentially say he thought he could get away with his actions because of who he is and how much money he has. The guy may be the greatest golfer who ever played the game, but he also is the worst human being to have ever played any professional sport.

February 20, 2010 at 9:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not a psychologist, and it won't be a popular position, but I'll argue that sometimes you CAN'T control who you have sex with. This doesn't mean that you go to bed with every undesirable man or woman who seeks to drag you there; it doesn't mean that a woman is always the unwilling victim of a man who rapes her: it means that sometimes it's impossible to stop when you are strongly sexually attracted to someone (opposite sex or not). This applies to men and to women -- maybe more so to men, but certainly there are female examples. And as we have seen, it's not restricted to teenagers.

Sex is a powerful force, and that's why there is such a thing as sexual addiction. It can be expressed as not being able to stop buying porn mags or visiting Internet sex sites, which can lead to disinterest in sex within or without marriage. Being addicted to sex is no different than being addicted to any other thing -- gambling (which, like sex, exerts no physical or chemical reason why the urge repeats itself) or drinking alcohol or taking drugs (which do have physical affects) or even being unable to stop buying shoes or using your credit cards.

And sexual addiction does not affect men only. Some women who fall into a careers as porn stars later discover that they are addicted to sex. Some women learn that they need sex -- whether it be with a woman or a man -- to feel validated, to have purpose. Some men feel the same necessity to justify "being a man," or to have a measure of control over a woman.

I think Tiger made a great analysis of his condition by saying that he thought he deserved to do whatever he wanted whenever he wanted, and that money and fame enabled him to do so. Now -- maybe he was parroting the words of a clinician, but we eventually will find out, won't we? But who is responsible for elevating Tiger to that position? How long did the media know about Tiger's affairs and say nothing (like they did with JFK's)? Why do others resist having affairs? Maybe because, unlike Tiger, they are not in high profile positions that expose them to a variety of attractive, willing, women. And maybe some people resist just because because they can, for moral or other reasons. It's that simple.

What everyone needs to do is back off this and other spectacular stories -- like "Balloon Boy" and which Hollywood star was arrested for DUI -- and allow Tiger to seek his natural level. If we want to hammer on people who actually have a negative effect on people's lives everyday by abusing power, we have more than enough judges, lawyers, politicians, minor civic officials, bosses and ministers to go around.

February 20, 2010 at 9:21 AM  
Blogger Brant said...

Very good comments, anonymous. Points well taken.

February 20, 2010 at 11:55 AM  
Blogger Lori said...

I was thinking Anonymous missed your point Brant.
Wasn't it.....There is bigger, more important issues in the news?

I was surprised you even made comment since you were the one indicating more important issues were at hand.

Sorry,I didn't finish your article (because I don't care about Tiger Woods personal/social/professional life). I try to read all of them all the way through. I may not always agree with you but I find your thinking process interesting.

February 21, 2010 at 8:22 PM  

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