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Monday, February 7, 2011

Boof heads should not be role models.

I try to keep this blog a place of self reflection, self ridicule and musings.

Today I will actually have an opinion.

An issue has come up yet again that I feel must be addressed.

Friends remember, if you disagree with what I have to say here- that's Ok! It doesn't make either one of us a bad person... It just makes you wrong... (I joke - couldn't resist)

I was at a cafe this morning and overheard a couple women discussing the recently bought to light antics of a few of the Western Bulldogs players. One felt it was a disgrace and wondered what was she going to tell her 6 yr old who was a "mad Doggies fan." That these footballers were role models to young kids and blah blah blah blah blah...

In my very humble opinion athletes should not be held up as role models for children in the area of "desirable personal attributes." Sporting prowess? Absolutely. If I ever have a son I would want him to be able to go in hard like Glen Archer did, I would not want him to look to Brendan Fevola for financial advice or to Nick Riewoldt for personal grooming tips.. (I am still scarred by that image)

The article in the Herald called it a "Youtube disgrace." For those of you not aware, during their end of season trip last year to China a few of the WBD players among them Adam Cooney who is a, GASP Brownlow medalist (this was mentioned numerous times in the piece as though it should make him immune to stupidity) and Jarrad Grant misbehaved on a night out. After exiting a bar they stopped a couple of cabs, got on the bonnet of a car and were involved in some VERY questionable dancing (Adam Cooney's pelvic thrusting is quite impressive) and yes, were generally behaving like douche bags.

I have watched this video and the only disgrace I can see is the bloke in the devil horns attempting to do the "worm." It is a truly shocking display, he should have a good hard look at himself in the mirror.

Someone taped it unbeknown to them and posted it on Youtube, it's already had over (another gasp) 8000 views... Make no mistake it's bratty, stupid and arrogant behaviour but it's not a reason to call for their guernseys.

Watch the bad behaviour here.

The club were quick to respond using language like "frustrated" and "disappointed." Bulldogs CEO Simon Garlick went as far to say they may need to reconsider their careers as footballers... Wow! Slightly over the top don't you think?

In my opinion the club should have said: "This is a non story, they were off the clock, no laws were broken, no injuries sustained- you should all seriously consider getting lives" but obviously put it in wanky football administrative terms.

To those of you yelling at the computer "Em, AFL players choose their occupation and get paid handsomely thus forfeit the right to a normal life and should accept their role model status" I say this:

I don't believe footballers knowingly "choose" to open up their private lives for our entertainment.
My husband and I had a VERY heated debate over this point. He feels lots of information is given to players before and during their time in AFL clubs about what comes with being a player in today's climate. That by choosing football they also accept the reality of public scrutiny on the rest of their non football lives. (It should be pointed out my husband's job is to help AFL players, coaches and executives deal with the pressures of their lives so that their professional performance is optimal- he's the expert) I say when they start out they are 18 and just want to play footy, they are incapable of fully understanding what awaits them should they stuff up along the way. Once they do stuff up, it's far bigger and scarier than anything they could have imagined.

I accept it's a players responsibility to conduct themselves in a manner that doesn't embarrass the club the game or anyone else, but why should these footballers be expected to show my children how to be honest, humble and generally good humans when all they really signed up for was to play footy? Some of these guys are genuine dickheads but my God can they kick. I would hope that my kids would be able to discern which attribute is more desirable to have - that's MY job as a parent.

If a child sees a picture of his favorite player, oh I don't know, posing inappropriately with a dog and thinks that it's ok to do the same - I'd say there are some deeper issues there at play.

The whole notion of a"role model" is flawed anyway. No one person could be held up and deemed the perfect specimen for a child to "model" their "role" as a human on.. I have many, many attributes I wouldn't wish upon my worst enemy yet alone my children and I'm their Mother. I hope they get my uncanny ability to line up the centre of anything without the use of a tape measure; I sincerely hope they both bypass my crippling anxiety and the neurotic behaviour that results.

There has been some bloody ridiculous behavior by some AFL players, I don't deny that. I am not here to defend the boof heads, I am here to say that I do not expect said boof heads to teach my children right from wrong.

Have an adventurous week.

E x

6 comments:

Charmaine said...

All Boofheadedness aside - what happens in Hong Kong - stays in Hong Kong.(I'll bet that's what they were hoping anyway) At least they kept it in their pants.
Go the Dogs -- Pixi

Nicola Barnes said...

I wouldn't even want the guys on the footy team back in high school to be role models for my kids.
In any case, the new youtube video is pathetic, the Herald Sun is crying wolf. Sexual assault is one thing, but this was drunken hijinx and trying to make them the same issue only trivialises the more serious offence.

andsoiwasthinking said...

I totally see your point - and agree. However, I think that anyone needs to have an air of professionalism. I was thinking about people in other professions like teachers or council members. They are by no means supposed to be perfect people but they know if they do something stupid off the clock they'll have to face consequences. Eg. if you are caught taking drugs or doing something sexually inappropriate in public, it would raise questions about your ability to perform your job or represent your community, right?

andsoiwasthinking said...

I totally see your point - and agree. However, I think that anyone needs to have an air of professionalism. I was thinking about people in other professions like teachers or council members. They are by no means supposed to be perfect people but they know if they do something stupid off the clock they'll have to face consequences. Eg. if you are caught taking drugs or doing something sexually inappropriate in public, it would raise questions about your ability to perform your job or represent your community, right?

Rebecca said...

With you here Em.

Most are meatheads whose skills include running fast, passing, catching, and kicking a football. Not much else.

Admire them for that, but don't look for them for 'moral living' tips. That's not what they're paid for.

Miss Bec x

Judd Exley said...

Spot on. Too bad we live in "The Age of Unaccountability" where it's not our fault we're fat, lazy or machine-gunned the nunnery.

If more folks called bullshit at bullshit behaviour and actually spend time parenting their children to avoid boofheadednessocity, then nobody'd be worried about who's doodle's near the labradoodle. We'd just shrug and say "he's an assjockey. Kids... don't do that."

You rock Em, like a hurricane only with less 80's cheese.