A note to pro athletes: it’s your responsibility to make a difference

I know today is the first day for college football and should be a great day for most sports fans.  Don’t get me wrong, it has been a great day for me watching games and hanging out with family.  Sports are a great part of life that are a distraction from worldly cares and stresses.

That of course is until see the ticker or read a story about what another athlete has done outside of the game.

If you are wondering what I am talking about this time, an overpaid NBA player was arrested and charged with domestic abuse.  Clearly this isn’t the first time a pro athlete has been charged with something like this and I’m sure it won’t be the last.  Now, I’m not saying that every athlete or even a lot of them do things like this, but more than zero is far too many.

This crap needs to stop.  There is never any situation out there where it is okay for a man to ever lay his hands on a woman in a violent or overly aggressive way.  It is completely unacceptable on all levels.  Didn’t anyone ever teach you respect for the fairer sex?  I don’t care how mad you get, it’s never okay! 

When something like this happens, I feel like it’s the responsibility of teammates (guys who are as big and strong and as wealthy) to stand up and make a difference.  There is nothing wrong with slamming a guy against the wall and making your feelings known about the situation.  Not many guys can push athletes around other than athletes so they need to take it upon themselves to make sure these kinds of situations don’t happen ever.

Just because you are a great ball player doesn’t mean the rules don’t apply to you.  The best part about being a pro athlete isn’t the money, the glamor or the fame.  It’s about being able to make a difference in the lives of the people around you.  Even people you don’t know.  Make sure that’s it’s a positive one.

Just because you are the “man” at some game doesn’t make you better than anyone else or give you the right to take advantage of people.

It’s time for athletes everywhere to take a stand against domestic violence.  When one of you does it, it makes all of you look bad.  Treat those in your life with honor and respect and make sure those around you do the same.  You don’t understand the kind of influence you have in the lives of young people.  They look up to you and think that you are heroes.  Some will see the things you do whether good or bad and emulate them because they want to be just like you.  Make sure they are copying good things.

I don’t care what anyone says, when you have the public spot light on you, you have a responsibility to make right choices.  You are role models whether you like it or not and need to act like it always.

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