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Do elite athletes have the right to refuse role model status

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Kaitlyn Kunysz

on 23 October 2013

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Transcript of Do elite athletes have the right to refuse role model status

Do Elite Athletes Have the Right to Refuse Role Model Status?
Who Can Be A Role Model?
Then vs Now
Role Model vs Idol
Role Model
Our Conclusion
Different Races and Genders
The Role of Money & Media
Increased media attention on professional athletes
People feel more connected to their favorite athletes
The public is given an in-depth look at every mistake they make
Are some athletes just in it for the money?
Charles Barkley: "I'm not paid to be a role model. I'm paid to wreak havoc on the basketball court."

Why the Changes?
Role Model: A person who serves
as an example of the values,
attitudes, and behaviors
associated with a role.
Idol: any person or thing regarded with blind admiration, adoration, or devotion
Raise Your Own Kids!!

Parental Involvement
Secondary Role Models
1936 Berlin Olympics - Jesse Owens
Hitler hoped the games would prove the theory of Aryan racial superiority
Jesse Owens, an African American athlete from the United States won 4 gold medals and set 4 Olympic records
Athletes were admired by fans because of their skills and physical abilities
Sport heroes exemplified social ideals and masculine virtues
Sports were a spectacle for entertainment
We have a more personal, up-close view on the personal lives of elite athletes
People are concerned with athletes' personal views and life decisions


Hank Greenberg
"I've tried to pattern my life on the fact that I'm out there in the limelight, so to speak, and that there's a lot of kids out there and if I set a good enough example for them, maybe in some ways it will affect their lives"

Star athletes that have had some form of moral indiscretion are not ideal role models
People can idolize their passion, skill, and drive but not necessarily their morals, values, and ethics
However, they cannot be expected to live a mistake-free life

A star athlete?
Or a parent, teacher, peer, etc?
Are we letting athletes, and other 'stars' teach our children, instead of taking it upon ourselves to teach them?
Parents, teachers, police officers, youth workers, etc.
Should we be promoting them as role models instead of star athletes?
Elite athletes can be idolized, but should not automatically receive role model status
Athletes can live however they choose, however their life will still be under public scrutiny to some extent
Parents and other members of the community have an obligation to teach their children morals and values, and should not rely on society, media, and stars to do this for them

Becoming a role model should be a personal decision made by the individual athlete
Discussion Questions
- Do you think that parents trust society too much, in that they’re allowing the media and entertainment figures to teach their children moral lessons?

- Can we blame the media for ruining the original idea that professional athletes are people to look up to?

- Does society put too much stress on professional athletes? They are professionals because they are good at their sport but now we are expecting them to be teachers and role models as well.

- Why are we putting so much emphasis on what athletes are doing off the court?

Adrian, Colin, Drew, Jansher, Jill, Kaitlyn, Layal, Mike, Sara
Female athletes are looked up to for physical appearance
Male athletes are admired for their skill
Full transcript