There's an old saw among law enforcement professionals that goes something like this:
"We all have the capacity to be quite bad under the right circumstances." ~ Dan Ariely
I am not condoning or defending anything. Frankly, I am disgusted by the amount of money professional athletes get paid especially when compared to teachers, nurses and other people who contribute far more to the greater good of society. The culture narrative that many people are engaged in today is not just about guns, drugs and violent behavior. That same culture includes cheating, gambling and other unethical (criminal) behavior that exists at all levels of sports starting with little league. It increases dramatically in college and comes to a climax in the big leagues. Note the correlation between the amount of money at stake and the severity of the behavior.
The great paradox here is that the glue that holds the matrix of failure together may very well be our own obsession with sports or, to be more precise, our obsession with WINNING. We all get off on those bad ass personalities a little bit, don't we? How many hours are consumed each weekend watching game after game after game? Season after season, decade after decade.
How many people will do whatever it takes to WIN in business, or at their kids' soccer matches or at garage sales for crying out loud? As the late Stephen Covey once said, we live in a WIN-LOSE society. For many, life itself is a zero sum game. Aaron Hernandez was a $40,000,000 athlete. Which begs the question, how many children could be mentored or tutored with $40 million?
"No one graduates from the Harvard Business School planning to screw the world and end up in jail but a scary number of them actually do." ~ Clay Christensen
The BUSINESS WORLD is not any better than the wide wide world of sports. Consider the quote above by Harvard professor and best-selling author, Clay Christensen. Again, I go back to my opening salvo -- the main difference between the men and women behind bars and the rest of us is that they got caught. As Duke professor Dan Ariely asserts, we all have the capacity to be quite bad under the right circumstances. I would only add that you don't need a gun to be "quite bad."
References & Resources
RAMBLE ON, the name of my SLOG was inspired by the Led Zeppelin song with the same name. It also describes the content, which reflects my very random observations about life, work and my endless pursuit of the sublime. See tag list below...
My "Fiscal Cliff" Playlist
"When you realize how little you know, you have become a philosopher."
~ Socrates ~