Archive for August 2015

First Amendment & Fools on Twitter

“Curt’s tweet was completely unacceptable, and in no way represents our company’s perspective,” ESPN said in a statement. In his classes and talks on ethics to those in both the sports world and corporate world, Chuck Gallagher, president of Sports Ethics LLC, routinely includes discussions on the social media. There are millions of ways to ruin a career especially in sports where the window is so narrow. One of the easiest things to do is to say something really dumb on the social media. Among athletes, Twitter is the fool’s […]

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NFL Study on Arrests: Ethically Flawed

One of my favorite comedians in the entire world is Chris Rock. He pokes fun at everyone, including himself. A number of years ago, in a comedy routine, he made fun of a guy who said: “I’ve never been arrested. I take care of my family.” To which Chris Rock responded (I am sanitizing this a little), “You’re not supposed to be arrested, and you are supposed to take care of your family.” As I read a piece of research done by the University of Texas at Dallas on arrest […]

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The Ethics of “Everyone Wins”

Participation

About a week ago, Nancy Armour (USA Today) wrote an insightful article (August 18, 2015) entitled: “Armour: James Harrison is right, you shouldn’t get a prize for showing up.” The article was prompted by Steelers LB James Harrison who took away participation trophies from his kids. His contention was that his children should not be awarded trophies unless they actually earn them. Said Armour: “Somewhere along the way, someone had the misguided notion that kids should live in a la-la land where everything is perfect, there are no hardships or […]

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No Social Media? How will Clemson FB Survive?

Clemson

The news out of Clemson may be troubling if you play Tiger’s football and you think you are addicted to the social media. According to Scott Keepfer, writing for the Greeneville (SC) News: “The Clemson football team’s social media shutdown went into effect on Aug. 3, the first day of fall camp. Players don’t have to delete their social media accounts, but are forbidden from being active on them until season’s end. The annual ban, which has become standard procedure for the Tigers over the past several seasons, is designed […]

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More Gender Bias in Sports

More often than not, we are confronted with gender stereotypes in sports that do a major disservice to both men and women. It has again happened this week. For example, there are those who put on the blinders and say, “Well, the PED controversy applies to men, of course. Women could care less about that kind of stuff.” I need only mention the tragic case of track star Marion Jones or Boston Marathon winner Rita Jeptoo who was banned 2 years for PED’s and just the day before yesterday, Olympic champion […]

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Who Cares About a Player When They Are “Gone?”

In 2009, Sports Illustrated arrived at the statistic that 78 percent of all professional football players declare bankruptcy within a 24 month period. The statistic has been proven to be false. In April 2015, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) re-worked the numbers and found that it was more like 1.9 percent of players go bankrupt after two years, and after 12 years, it is closer to 16 percent. This news is not cause for cheering and celebration. Jordan Weissmann, writing for Slate.com (April 13, 2015) pointed out a […]

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PED Disconnect: Holding the Mirror to Ourselves

Last week I was interviewed in regard to ethics and PEDs. I am ethically against them, but we can save that conversation for another time. Later the day of the interview, a woman reached out to me on the social media and said that it was a silly argument as the “pharmaceutical industry” had taken over sports and that everyone who plays sports cheats. She admitted she did not like sports or professional athletes in general. I thought a great deal about the interview and the comments above. Something was […]

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Good People around Aldon Smith

“This is a day that doesn’t have anything to do about football. … Although he won’t be playing football for the San Francisco 49ers, he will be supported and helped, and he will not have to walk this path alone.” — 49ers coach Jim Tomsula Aldon Smith has finally been released. After multiple chances and numerous counseling sessions I am sure, this exceptional linebacker has been shown the door. Over recent years, he has been charged with three DUI’s, causing property damage (vandalism), hit-and-run, assault weapons charges and a motor […]

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Don’t Feel Sorry for Ray Rice

There are two conversations in regard to Ray Rice. I am not qualified to lead one of them. The first conversation is a football conversation. It is a business decision in regard to hiring a once exceptional running back. His numbers declined even before “the incident,” and if a decision is to be made on pure talent, I am certainly not the one to say “yes” or “no.” Also working against him is that he is unemployed at his profession when many other unemployed, competing football players without baggage are […]

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Justin Blackmon: Melting Down a Career

Amid the hype and hollering of first round, second round, third round euphoria; amid the hanger’s on, leeches, new-found relatives and long-lost friends, is a voice that is so soft that it is often not heard. It is the voice that is often drowned out in the cacophony of the “on-airs,” agency deals, publicists, endorsement deals; the voice unheard in parties, clubs, backstage passes and celebrity. It is the voice of ethics; of someone teaching a young, frighteningly talented football player like Justin Blackmon about making good choices rather than […]

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