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Regardless of age, sex, ethnicity, or personal interest, everyone at one point in their life had somebody that they looked up to, or modeled their life around. It could have been a parent, teacher, priest, or perhaps someone famous. Many young kids today look up to celebrities, which include actors, musicians, and most notably professional athletes. Most kids see celebrities as "heroes" and often look up to them because they envy that person's position in life and in most cases would like to grow up to be like that person. One reason why kids look up to celebrities is because they're very well known and can regularly be seen on television, thus having their personal and private lives be easily accessible for the public's viewing. When in the eye of the public 24/7, these celebrities are faced with constant media and public scrutiny, having everything they do watched closely under a microscope. Even when an athlete does something remotely wrong, it's completely blown out of proportion. I don't believe that athletes should be held responsible for the actions of others due to that particular athlete's behavior.
I know that many people probably disagree with my standing on this issue, but I will attempt to explain myself. One would think that growing up as someone who emulated professional athletes, I would take the opposing viewpoint. But the fact is, I realize a majority of the professional athletes either don't want the responsibility as a role model or don't have the particular image or personality that is regularly classified with a typical role model. As a youngster, my role models were indeed professional athletes as noted by the posters on my bedroom wall still to this day. But my role models were the "good guys" of sports. I idolized such players as Cal Ripken Jr., Michael Jordan and Joe Montana, whose determination and hard-work on and off the field taught me a great deal about sports and life in general. As a kid, I knew what players not to model myself after. I knew not to follow such athletes as Deion Sanders, Michael Irvin and Darryl Strawberry, whose frequent run-ins with the law and substance abuse not only tainted their images, organizations, and sports but the minds of many kids who had indeed looked towards them as role models.
Many professional athletes claim they don't want to be role models towards young kids and they shouldn't be forced to be something they're not. In a controversial Nike shoe commercial in 1993, NBA star Charles Barkley stated that he wasn't a role model and he didn't want to be one. This commercial sti
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baseball, football, basketball, boxing, hockey,
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Mark McGwire, Ty Cobb, Wilt Chamberlain, Mickey Mantle, Charles Barkley, Darryl Strawberry, Brooks Robinson, Charles, Barkley, Joe Montana, Mark Johnson, Andro, Deion Sanders, Cal Ripken Jr., that, Julian Morrow, let, he, O.J. Simpson, them, Michael Irvin, Michael Jordan, Dennis Rodman, Mike Tyson, Frank Robinson., Jeff Benedict, Don Yaeger,
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