A couple of characters have had their business dragged out into the press which had me thinking about the people I used to look up to as a kid.
Now as a kid and really even now I have always had a soft spot for the counter culture, rebels in politics (Che, Mao, Castro), non conformist artist (Marley, P.E., KRS), Social reformist (Garvey, Gandhi, Mandela), and general bad asses in sports (The Knicks of the 90's, Mets of the 80's).
It speaks to my love hate with the powers that be.
When you get older you values change and you start to question your role models character or choices they made.
And that can easily lead to questioning what they accomplished in the first place.
That's when you have to start separating the talent from they very human like man.
To keep this short I'll use sports as an example.
Sports, now that has always been apart of my life from the time I was a kid, did not matter if I was participating or just watching it was around.
I would go out the way to play despite being in a family that frowned on sports and instead pushed academics.
So I would hide the fact I played sports at all.
I forged my mom's signature on a permission slips to play football, than basketball and finally soccer and track starting in the 8Th grade through high school just so she would not try to say no.
Slipped in and out of the house to hide sport injuries from her, hitched rides to away games, paid for my own shoes and cleats on and on.
It was not hard as you think it is when you are the one of three sons of a single working mother who was putting herself through school.
Sports ruled my life and of course the stars of the game were my heroes.
They could do no wrong when I was a kid that's how much my "Fandome" ruled me.
Case in point the dude here........
Iron Mike was the man back in his day.
And I would was a loyal fan, till this day I'll argue with people who belittle his accomplishments now that he is on hard times.
But now as an adult I have to admit the faults in this man that my mind would omit as a kid.
Mike played on every negative stereotype of black men, over sexed, hyper masculine, criminal, you name it it was him.
Hell you can even insert the big penis myth with him too, after all his lawyers used it in his defense against rape charges explaining how the woman got the bruising.
He was Jack Johnson reborn, and he knew it.
That's why he played up to the stereotypes, and could you blame him for that?
If there going to look at you like an animal might as well charge them to look at your monkey ass.
But that doesn't excuse me for turning a blind eye to the street fights, the rape, the threats, the general roguish behavior all for the promise of watching him send some one off to la la land.
It's amazing how the mind can rationalize things, "they messed with him it' self defense', "what the hell was she doing in his room at that time of the hour?", "He is just selling the fight", and "If he stopped head butting him he would still have a damn ear, bet you next time he'll listen".
Just so I could see this....
We all do it when some one gets under skin the right way we swear we understand where they are coming from until the the moment when we grow up or that hero crosses the line.
Than we cant defend them any more I don't even know when that moment came with Tyson but I do when it came with this crook right here.....
Now if you haven't already heard Karl "lover boy" Malone here has a couple of kids out of wedlock not unheard of for this planet but the latest child now a grown man is making a name for himself on the football field so naturally a little digging is being done by the press and low and behold they "find out" that the young man's, Demetrius Bell, mother was 13 when she got pregnant by the mailman who was in college at the time making him 19.
And of course he wanted nothing to do with the kid and so on.
You can read the details here from Jemele Hill.
Now I am not bothered by the lousy dad of the year award people are trying to drop on him because well there are to many lousy dads and moms for that matter running around this planet that need to be fixed for me to be worried about the Mailman.
That horse has been beaten dead raised up again and beaten back under.
As you have guessed it is the fact that the girl was 13 at the time.
The old me would have jumped up and said she lied about her age, he was drunk, it was dark in the room and he thought she was some one else, whatever.
This me now says however, naw........
..you a stupid raping mutha@#!$.
But here is the point of me writing this, as much as I despise these dudes I can not deny there talent, Malone will go down as one of the best power forward in the game, Mike Tyson one of the most exciting heavy wts ever, Ike Turner music innovator, R. Kelly, Tupac, the list goes on of men that may or may not have their own suite in hades reserved for them.
You can not erase their accomplishments you got to accept it all flaws and all.
The worst thing you can do is ignore one for the other.
As a man I can separate the flaws from the man pick out what I like and still recognize that dude is a jerk.
And since I have no kids I do not have to explain why, which are the only people who are at risk of being mislead by who ever they decide to crown as a role model.
And believe me they have their own and 9 times out of 10 they are not on your list of approved people.
There the ones who need some talking to, as for me I just keep breaking them down and piecing them back together.
Thats all I got to say.