Last week, Jim Brown, as he seems to do every year or so, called out a high-profile minority athlete for not speaking out on social issues.
On Tuesday, Woods responded during his pre-AT&T National press conference.
"I think I do a pretty good job as it is what we're trying to do with the (Tiger Woods) Foundation," Woods said. "We have this event here (The AT&T National), the Chevron World Challenge, our (Tiger) Jam in Vegas and our Block Party in Orange County. What we're trying to do (is) not just here in United States, but what my mom's doing in Thailand.I know why Brown continues to beat this drum -- he lived through the civil rights movement, he faced discrimination, and his activism made it easier for other African-American athletes (and, to an extent, Cablinasian ones) to earn a living in professional sports.
"I want to not just do it, but do it right. And that takes time. And you have to understand, you just don't jump into something. You want to do it right. You want to have a plan, and I think what we've done so far has been very good, very efficient and it's helped a lot of kids, and taught a lot of kids how to get back and learn, learn how to lead, learn how to give back. Learn how to teach others, have confidence in themselves to be able to do all these different things, and have these attributes going forward. That takes time. And I think we've done it right."
Yeah, when it comes to taking a stand on social issues, Woods is as decisive as a politician running for election, but it's short-sighted to think that means he's not doing enough. And Brown's criticism of Woods is misguided for all the reasons Tiger outlined during his press conference.
But as Uncle Ben reminded us, "With great power must come great responsibility." For Woods, hearing about how he needs to do more is all part of being the world's most visible athlete. And by now, he's used to it.
Five years ago in a Washington Post column questioning whether Tiger was a "sour complainer ... whose manners are as lousy as his play is disappointing," Sally Jenkins graciously offered Woods some advice to help him keep things in perspective.
My first suggestion for Woods's immediate and long-term recovery is that he spend four years in the Peace Corps. Planting crops in Ethiopia or Zaire while teaching children to read and write would have a salutary effect on his attitude, which at the moment resembles that of a spoiled Venetian princess.I'm sure Jenkins' various charitable organizations far outpace any work Woods has done.
Hypocrisy aside, it's just more proof that Tiger, because of his lofty status and skin color, is held to a higher standard. He understands that, and more importantly, he's doing something about it. Not because of Jenkins or Brown or whomever, but because that's how he was raised.
Obviously, Woods doesn't need me to defend him, but if we're going to waste our energy on something, how about the truly important stuff. Like how in the hell could Tiger invite Tony Romo to play with him in the AT&T National pro-am instead of, oh, I don't know, anybody but Tony Romo?
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