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Old 02-09-2009, 09:38 PM   #1  
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Default Fallen HEROES?

In recent days a couple of our so called idols have been exposed to be less than perfect.

Michael Phelps was caught smoking pot ~ Alex Rodriguez has admitted....after being caught....to have used steroids.

I don't know that either asked to be an idol.

Is it fair to them that we, as a people, look up to them...idolize them?

Why is it that we care what Brad and Angelina's kids look like or if they even have kids?

Why do we care what religion Tom Cruise is or what couch he will jump on next?

Why do we look up to people in the spotlight?

What is the matter with us?

Is it fair to "them"?

What do you think?

Who was/is your idol?

For me it was always a baseball player growing up...always a Los Angeles Dodger of course

When my son came out to the car, after school, when he was 15 and was upset that Tupac Shakur had died I knew I had failed as a father
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:26 PM   #2  
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Dale Earnhardt was my hero. He didn't let "Going Big Time" change him. You could watch the other drivers change the way they "handled" reporters and the public as they were trained in public speaking. A couple of years before he died a reporter asked him how he felt about a driver who had made a rookie mistake and knocked him out of the race. He just gave the guy a "Are you serious?" look then, point-blank, said, "That's a stupid question." and walked off. Interview OVER!!!!

My sister met him once in The Bahama's. Her boss's yacht was docked next to his, The Sunday Money. She was sitting out on the dock kicking back and so was he. She said they just started yapping like you would with anyone you met like that. Would never have realized he was a multi-millionaire super star if you didn't know(but she sure knew).

She was the first person I called when I heard the news. I completely lost it. To this day, when asked if I could met anyone, living or dead, he is the only person that comes to mind.

Last edited by Operator265; 02-09-2009 at 10:27 PM.
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:36 PM   #3  
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personally i dont care if michael phelps smokes pot. most people do at some point in their life, i am not condoning it, but i dont think most people have the right to judge him. Its not like pot improves performance or anythign lol. He still did great at the olympics and on his own merit.. good for him.
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:40 PM   #4  
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My family watched the summer olympics. My 5 year old was fascinated with Michael Phelps. In fact, we were watching basketball and he yelled, "Go Michael Phelps!" Whether Mr. Phelps likes it or not, he IS a role model. Kids look up to him. My son took swimming lessons last summer so he could swim like Michael Phelps. I'm going to work my a$$ off so my son doesn't 'bong' like him.

I don't have an idol, although I've been in love with John Travolta since 3rd grade. Vinny Barbarino.... sigh....
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:46 PM   #5  
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I believe that the difference lies in whether the thing you're doing is related to the thing that made you a "hero".

Alex Rodriguez did something wrong that was related to what he is "looked up to" for - baseball. He used performance enhancing drugs to make himself look like MORE of a sports hero, and to gain more acclaim. I believe that any repercussions that fall on HIM, he earned. Period. He took the paychecks and the acclaim that were based on his performance, which he artificially enhanced and lied about, repeatedly. His wrongdoing was part of what made him a "hero".

Michael Phelps is a different story. He did something wrong also, but it was completely UNRELATED to what he accomplished in Beijing. His actions were taken in his private, personal life, with no intention of impacting his performance. He passed ALL of the drug tests for performance enhancing drugs during competition, even submitting himself to more vigorous testing. His wrongdoing had nothing to do with what made him a "hero". I believe that, honestly, the matter with him should be dropped.

All of these people agree to be "looked up to" by being in the fields they are in, more or less. But it's one thing to be looked up to for something you genuinely did, and then let down some people who took your good performance in one area (swimming) and applied it to make you a golden boy across all areas. It's another thing entirely to be looked up to for something that chemicals did for you, and let down all of the people you'd lied to about it.
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Old 02-09-2009, 11:16 PM   #6  
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10-4 mandalinn!!! Excellent post!!
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Old 02-09-2009, 11:23 PM   #7  
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My heros have always been people in my life, my mother for raising 5 children pretty much on her own with an alcholic husband, my sister for putting herself thru college to get a nursing degree by working menial jobs and walking back and forth to school everyday for years.

We set up these icons, and are suprised when they fall, they are human, not super human, just human.
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:04 AM   #8  
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I think it's nice to know that these people are not perfect, that they make mistakes just like everyone else.

I also agree that we pay WAY too much attention to these people's personal lives (i.e., the Brangelina family), and we tend to idolize them in areas they weren't meant to be idolized in.
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:34 AM   #9  
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It is the cultire we live in. People in the public eye expose their lives to us -through interviews and etc. We feel that we "know" them and take it personally when things happen to them.

I don't think that there is anything wrong with being sympathetic when someone in the limelight dies. I remember when Tupac died. I wasnt devasted but it made life and death became real to me. I had not known anyone young who had died. I realized that he would no longer make music and etc...It was final. No one is exempt from death. Biggie died ; Left Eye from TLC died ; Alijah died. All the way to Heath Ledger. While I may not approve of some of these people's lifestlyes...I still "feel" their absence.

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Old 02-10-2009, 07:54 AM   #10  
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I also agree it's fine and normal to be upset by someone dying. I get upset when people are murdered in my local newspaper, so a big celebrity all over the news is bound to make me stop and think.

Phelps doing pot is so blown out of proportion in my opinion. It can't affect his career, except negatively, so it's not like he was cheating or anything he did means less now. And for kids following him? They'll do it anyway if they are going to, whether their idol does or not. Pot is SO easy to get a hold of. Even someone as innocent as I could find someplace to get it, or know someone who does it. It's REALLY hard not to. I loved Britney Spears when I was younger and I never went off like her haha. I think it's made a bigger issue than it has to be.

And oh man, that whole Tom Cruise is crazy thing annoys me so much. It was **** trying to find anyone to see Valkyrie with because Tom Cruise is a "scientologist" and "jumps on couches." Rargh. People miss a good movie cause of what someone did in the past.
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Old 02-10-2009, 08:40 AM   #11  
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I don't think that anyone should be upset with Michael Phelps for smoking pot, most people do at some point. I pretty much came in to say what Mandalinn (very eloquently) said, if it doesn't have anything to do with his performance, why the big deal? It actually opened up a good talk with my kids about drugs and about how, even if it's something small or "just one time", it can have an unintended effect on your life (I hate the "just say no" and "drugs are bad" mentality of most drug talks, I'd much rather say, "look, here's real life and look what's happening").

Another thing is that these people have so many people just waiting for them to do ANYTHING that will sell a picture. I wouldn't want to live my life in a fishbowl, so I don't think that when people do we should get too bent out of shape when they make human mistakes. He's a 23 year old kid doing what most 23 year old kids do at some point in their 20s, get over it America.
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Old 02-10-2009, 09:40 AM   #12  
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The thing I get from the Michael Phelps incident is that he shouldn't be considered a hero... neither should A-Rod... or any other Hollywood celebrity. They either have tremendous ability or talent, or have been very lucky to get to where they are. Good for them, but it isn't "hero" worthy.

To me, there are many others who could be considered heroes and have earned the respect. These are the people who our kids should look up to. How many stories could be told about the heroes in the military? What about all of the emergency response people at 911? What about Sully, the pilot of the plane that went into the Hudson.

As a parent, though, I admit it is so tough to keep kids from focusing on the rich and famous.
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:34 PM   #13  
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I think the term "hero" is used too loosely. Really tired of people calling people a hero for doing their job. A hero is someone who goes above and beyond...someone who does something that they normally wouldn't.
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:54 PM   #14  
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See, Cpt Sullenburger no doubt is a "hero" for doing his job. But even he never asked to be a hero - he was just doing his job, and saving his own life, and the lives of many other people, through some quick thinking and incredible flying skill. Now he's a mini-celebrity...getting keys to the city, being videotaped regardless of where he goes, etc. He did his job, and did it exceptionally well, and as a result is incredibly well known. He didn't ask to be a hero either (in fact, does anyone else think he looks visibly uncomfortable during all of these media events?)

What happens when the photos come out of "Sully" at a strip club? Are people going to talk about how disappointed they are in him? What if some girl he dated before his wife comes forward and says he did something terrible? What if he, post-retirement from flying, smokes pot? (I know plenty of folks his age who do, and not for medical reasons, either).

I think the problem is that we take a person who does SOMETHING exceptional...Phelps, Capt. Sullenberger, etc...and decide that, unless we get evidence to the contrary, they must be EXCEPTIONAL PEOPLE at everything else. So Michael Phelps, who is a great SWIMMER, disappoints people by smoking pot, not because anything he has done or indicated previously was a lie about whether he smoked pot, but because him being a "pot smoker" doesn't reconcile with him being exceptional in all areas. When in reality the two have nothing to do with one another.

I'm really passionate about the topic (and I guess that's obvious!). Again, A-Rod is a different situation, because he clearly was doing wrong with the aim of becoming a hero. But Michael Phelps never made any promises to the American people. He never made any claims. He did what he was born to do, at an exceptional level, and the media and other people started building him up to be this Amazing Human Being On All Levels. And that is a label that NO ONE can live up to.
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:11 PM   #15  
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Personally I feel really, really bad for anyone with celebrity status. Can you imagine being hounded by paparazzi or even just dogged by the media at all? Can you imagine not being able to go out to a restaurant or even the mall because you might be recognized and bothered by the general public?

What Michael Phelps did was a mistake--and whoever took his picture also made a mistake (why send it to the press?). He admitted it, now lets get over it.

What A-Rod did was a mistake, but he has acknowledged the fact that he did it and because of the fact that it was to make him better in his sport, he ought to pay some consequences (although his health in the future might be consequence enough).

Leave Sully alone. Let his celebrity status fade so he can go back to being the normal man he was and let him live his life.
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