WE OUGHT TO REMEMBER GEORGE
Things have changed. Well, maybe not. We learned as children in school that when confronted about chopping down a cherry tree, a young fellow named George Washington stood tall and confessed- “I cannot tell a lie.” Middle of the nineteenth century, we had a president named Abraham Lincoln. I’m certain you’ve heard of him. Tall, lanky fella. On the five dollar bill. Nicknamed- “Honest Abe”. I’m certain that despite the example those two set, there have been liars throughtout the ages. Brutus probably told Caesar there was nothing going on. The Indians told Custer that it was just a little get-together at Little Big Horn. Bill Clinton said he “didn’t inhale”. I guess it’s just in peoples’ nature. Why then, are we surprised to learn that our athletes are liars? Mark McGwire finally admitted that he took performance enhancing drugs for a decade. TEN YEARS!!! That means he probably took them a lot longer. Says he didn’t take them to help him hit home runs. YEAH RIGHT!! Told Bob Costas that he felt he’d been given a gift and that he’d have hit the homers without the ‘roids. Told old Bob he took them for his health. What- to worsen it? As a stupid young guy at UMass in the early ’80s, I took steroids for about a week until I read about their long term effects. Believe me, I was no Einstein, but I knew enough to flush the rest of the dianabol down the toilet. As a shotputter, I might have gotten to 60 feet or so, but it was not worth it. Why couldn’t McGwire come out and admit he took them to hit the home runs, make money and try to earn a spot in Cooperstown? It is well after the fact, but at least we could respect him for coming forth and admitting his misdeed. While we seem to have forgotten about George Washington and his honesty, we reward someone who has the ethics of renowned liar George Costanza of “Seinfeld”. (My whole life is a sham, Jerry). Under the radar this week, is the lie told by Daisuke Matsuzaka. (A lie by omission is just as bad). Dice neglected to tell the Sox about the groin injury he sustained at the World Baseball Classic because he didn’t want to be perceived as an “excuse-maker”. He wasted an entire year after being sent back to Fort Myers for a “re-do” of Spring Training. For the money he is being paid, he should be ashamed. I thought there was supposed to some code of honor. I guess not when you’re represented by Scott Boras. Lying is easy. But in this day and age of the internet, with everyone carrying around some kind of phone or recording device or camera, there is no longer any such thing as “off the record”. Just ask Tiger Woods. We are disappointed, but we shouldn’t be surprised. Takes me back to one of the very first poems I learned on the playground…”Liar, liar. Pants on fire!” Somebody better get the hose.