Sorry is as Sorry Does

So in the land of sports journalism and media the lines have clearly been drawn. While some of us have been seeing society’s double standards for so long we barely notice them anymore, others have been getting some rude awakenings lately.
Last night, the inevitable happened, and Michael Vick was signed to the Philadelphia Eagles. While this made me super happy, I knew somewhere in the back of my mind that there would be all manner of backlash from the media and from fans.

The other day, it came out that six years ago, Rick Pitino (yes him Knick fans) had a one night stand on the floor of a restaurant and the person he slept with got pregnant. He was told that for $10 million no one would ever find out, but he didn’t pay, so now we all know.

Just the most recent exploits that have had the media clamoring for apologies and signs of remorse. What I don’t get is why all that is necessary.

We live in a society where athletes and coaches and celebrities in general live by a different set of rules. Women are raped, wives beaten, asses needled, and it’s just a part of the day as long as they perform. In the quest for “information,” the rest of us find out about some of these exploits and all of a sudden the press demands an apology.

Why? Am I going to sleep better tonight because Mike Vick is sorry about his federal interstate gambling ring conviction? Will my bills suddenly be paid off because Rick Pitino apologized to all of the fans and supporters? Yeah I didn’t think so, and frankly it amazes me how many of these journalists jump on the holier than thou bandwagon under the guise of reporting.

Since we’re demanding (and getting) public apologies and all, I have a few demands of my own:

1. Jay Mariotti needs to apologize for having perfectly arched eyebrows and wearing eyeliner on television.

2. Skip Bayless should apologize for having red hair. Yeah mine is red too, but so what.

3. All of you out there should apologize for being born!!

I kid, but not really. If we are truly going to be a forgiving society and live and let live, these public lynchings based on little more than skewed opinion and twisted facts have no place. People make mistakes, thats what makes us people. While some might make bigger ones than others-when they apologize, it should be sincere, and directed to the people who stand to suffer the most from it.

While there are people who truly do deserve apologies for their actions, you and I, and random sportswriters are not the ones they should be directed to. Their families, colleagues and friends are. Sure you can do it publicly, but it’s starting to look as if there are quite a few out there who somehow think an apology in imperative to their own lives.

I’ll be rooting for Mike Vick because I want to see him do well. The best apology he can make is to play well and be a good citizen. I don’t buy him suddenly working with animal rights groups, just like I wouldn’t buy Pitino doing happy marriage seminars.

Of course I’ll turn on my television today and there will be “reporters” clamoring for both of their heads. Silently wishing they had the talent to play or coach at that level, and still mad about the date they lost out on 20 years ago to the school jock.

It’s becoming more and more obvious the more that things like this happen in sports and entertainment. What they really want is an apology for them not being able to be in the spotlight, they’re just putting some lipstick on that pig, and too many of us are calling it petunia.

Like Terita’s take on sports? Tired of people assuming that women aren’t die hard sports fans? Or maybe you’re using this column to make sure your bf’s weekly sports obsession doesn’t completely put you to sleep and you can make conversation? Either way, read the rest of Terita’s Sportie rundown below.


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