The disappearing realm of good role models

"If people are paid for what they do, it seems, there are no rules concerning their behaviour."

It is getting harder and harder to find people, particularly in sports, but also in political high spots, that one could recommend as role models. If people are paid for what they do, it seems, there are no rules concerning their behaviour.

More and more the once, “merciless glare,” of media is quite merciful in its impact. Sure, Lance Armstrong has gone from icon to sort of nobody important, but he lives pretty well on the proceeds of his drug-fueled racing highs and you hear very little of him now, only months after the concrete revelations of his sleaziness came out.

Druggies in other sports, particularly baseball, get wrist-slapped just before they get big free agent deals, and you will have to go a long way to convince me that nobody in pro hockey ever used performance enhancing drugs, even though news of discovered infractions on that front is very, very, rare.

Part of that is that the NFL is so over the top that miscreants in other leagues get passes.

Not a week goes by without some current or recently former football hero is arrested, or convicted of some act of illegality or criminality. Drugs, money scams, murders, rapes, sexual abuses and harassments, assaults – all are part of the everyday culture of the world’s most profitable sporting enterprise.

Even the nearly sainted Walter, “Sweetness” Payton, generally a paragon on the field and well loved by fans from around the world, turned out to be a less-than exemplary family person and a drug abuser – and he was long considered the best of them.

The NFL is different.

One has to be at least a little stupid to volunteer to participate in such a painful endeavour – regardless of the monetary rewards – that almost guarantees a brief and painful post-career life. Perhaps we should just expect less of football players, and stop buying the products they endorse.

But other sports, and politics, and as we have seen of late, big business, produce few in the way of well publicized exemplary humans, you know, the kind of people you should want your kids to emulate.

There are still people worth emulating in the world, and they are probably closer than you think.

Want a role model for your kids, be one. That means modulate your behaviour so as not to be a, “hockey parent,” or a grump of any kind. If you can’t do that, find a neighbour who can and encourage your kids to be like them.

The world needs civility, and kindness, and engagement from its residents. Turn away from the Rob Ford extravaganza, the weaseling of parliament and maybe the ultra-violent games and movies that are all around, and take yourself and your family in a better direction.

Sports, games, the ability to make a profit – these are all good things.

They are only very good things if what goes along with them is good for our families and friends and neighbours and the environment.

 

Just Posted

Protestors blocking Columbia Avenue Saturday evening. Photo: Betsy Kline
Old growth protesters begin 24-hour blockade of Castlegar’s main street

Members of Extinction Rebellion plan to stay overnight

Forty sled dogs were seized by the BC SPCA from a Salmo kennel in February. A recent ruling has decided the dogs won’t be returned. Photo: Gounsil/Flickr
BC Farm Industry Review Board rules against Salmo kennel after 40 sled dogs seized

Spirit of the North Kennels was also ordered to pay BC SPCA $64,000

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

SD20 now has an electric bus. Photo: Submitted
Kootenay-Columbia School District 20 adds electric bus to fleet

Bus will be incorporated into Castlegar route for next school year

Painting by Dave Davies from Shaver’s Bench facing Teck Trail.
Happy 120th Birthday to the City of Trail!

The town of Trail Creek- or Trail Creek Landing - was incorporated as a city on June 14, 1901.

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Most Read