Archive for February, 2011
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On the TUNNEY SIDE of SPORTS #321 February 28, 2011 Coming next: Judging Behavior or Persona?
After further review…The European Golf Tour played recently in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates produced more than Spain’s Alvaro Quiros as its champion. Unfortunately, for Quiros, the “breaking news” was Tiger Woods – not his golf, but his behavior. Following his missed putt on the 12th green, Woods spit (call it spittle, if you wish) on the green in disgust. “Upon further review” Mike Stewart of the Euro Tour fined Woods an undisclosed amount for his conduct. While the amount is insignificant, the offence (English version) was all over the media.
Woods’ apology was immediate, “It was inconsiderate to spit like that and I know better–just wasn’t thinking and I want to say I’m sorry”. The apology was met with mixed responses. Some, without defending the behavior, mentioned that if it were not Tiger, it probably would not have drawn that kind of attention. Others, without much ado, just accepted the apology at face value.
The question arises do we accept that apology believing that Woods’ act was one of just not thinking? Or do we continue to heap blame on him because of his infidelity (2009) that led to his world-famous divorce? Do we punish the behavior or the persona? My father’s advice comes to mind about what he taught me regarding discipline: 1) what’s best for the individual; 2) what’s best for the group (others) and 3) what would you do if this were your own child?
First and foremost, spitting in public is unsightly and unhealthy. Yet, show me the guy who hasn’t done it! However, when you engage in the game of golf, you automatically accept the rules of golf. Think it possible to invoke that rule in major league baseball? Even seen a MLB dugout after a game? I’ve certainly seen spitting on the field in the NFL. How about soccer? Probably wouldn’t happen in indoor sports.
Woods’ action, although outdoors and disgusting, may cause golfers who follow to walk or putt through that spittle. So the question remains, do you find fault with the behavior or the individual? Some will never forgive Woods’ for his infidelity as some will never forgive Philadelphia Eagles QB Michael Vick for his insolent treatment and killing of dogs (2007).
Will you deal with the behavior or the persona when criticizing and/or disciplining others?
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I am determined to be cheerful and happy in whatever situation I may find myself. For I have learned that the greater part of my misery or unhappiness is determined not by my circumstance but by my disposition.
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