Jim Brown Rips Tiger Woods for Failure to Speak Out on Social Issues
Brown always said he had a social responsibility that went far beyond football, and after retiring he started the Amer-I-Can Program and has worked tirelessly to promote education and curtail gang violence, efforts that he says other professional athletes should emulate. And in an interview scheduled to air Tuesday on HBO, Brown singled out Tiger Woods as the one athlete whose failure to work for social change most disappoints him.
In a profile of Brown and Bill Russell that will air on HBO's Real Sports With Bryant Gumbel, Brown ripped Woods, expressing disappointment that Woods shows such passion on the golf course but doesn't seem passionate about making a difference in society.
"You know what's so interesting about Tiger to me?" Brown said. "He is a killer, he will run over you, he will kick your ass. But as an individual for social change? Terrible. Terrible. Because he can get away with teaching kids to play golf, and that's his contribution. In the real world, I can't teach kids to play golf and that's my contribution, if I've got that kind of power."
This isn't the first time Brown has criticized Woods; last year Brown said he thinks Woods is too politically correct. And in fairness to Woods, it should be pointed out that his Tiger Woods Foundation has spent millions of dollars on educational programs, so it isn't accurate to say that teaching kids to play golf is his only contribution to society.
But it's certainly also true that Woods usually tiptoes around controversial issues. That obviously irks Brown, a great athlete who never backed away from controversy.