Doing the Right Thing!

Written by on September 10, 2018

 

On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS September 10, 2018, #709…Doing the Right Thing!
After further review…While the intent of the TunneySide of Sports is to promote the positive aspect of sports, usually from sports stories themselves, often an issue inspires this writer to take life lessons from other sources and apply them to sports. Such is the case of the late Senator John McCain’s characteristics that were attributed to him during his funeral. Of special interest was his collaborative efforts and his personal emphasis on telling the truth. However, the late senator would be first to admit mistakes he made during his lifetime.
Senator McCain worked with “both sides of the aisle,” as his political acumen was evident in tributes paid to him from all political parties. He stood his ground, maybe to the offense of his own party, when it was important to maintain his integrity. He fought for what he thought was right. He defended an opponent when words spoken were not so – in his mind. Can we speak about our athletic opponents with civility, even they may be fierce competitors?
McCain’s presidential campaign (circa 2008) carried his theme: ‘Straight Line Express’ with his persistent statement: “I will never lie to you!” How often do we hear that from our politicians? Those words are emphasized in the poem “The Man in the Glass.” While McCain had to make some statements that were heard throughout the world, it is the thinking here that he could always look at himself in the mirror and know his integrity was intact. Can we rely on our athletic coaches, players, and officials to do the same? This writer believes: “If you have integrity, nothing else matters. If you don’t have integrity, nothing else matters!”
During his presidential campaign while in the state of South Carolina, he came up short! By his own admission, he was not honest, when commenting on the Confederate flag and statues of Confederate civil war heroes. He “looped-it” as it were, as opposed to “straight-lining.” Reflecting on what he had said, he soon realized that he had violated his own standards and, as soon as he could, went public with his error. He said he became more interested in winning that state than in being true to himself. This is where McCain’s beliefs place him above others.
How often do athletic personnel place integrity above winning? In today’s athletic events, is winning the only thing? Where does integrity, good sportsmanship, civility, respect for your opponents, and for the game itself tend on the old Golden Rule?
Will you log-in on where winning falls in the order of what’s important in sports?
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To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

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