Last night, my wife and I went to a fundraiser for a group that builds orphanages in South America. This group's mission is to rescue unwanted and abandoned children from a life of gangs and sexual slavery. One of the children featured was pregnant, at age 11.
The son of a friend (along with his wife) spent this past summer in east Asia working with a group that rescues young girls from sexual slavery in a country known for it.
The church that my wife and I attend has an inordinate amount of people that are out of work. Some receive no assistance whatsoever, and are existing on favors and odd jobs. There are people who come to my office to file for bankruptcy with a lot of debt. It's sad because although the bankruptcy will clear off their debt and stop existing collection activity, I know they will leave my office still trying to make $200 feed a family of five for a month. These people are tirelessly looking for work, willing to do whatever comes their way. There is no bitterness, no despair, only hope for the future and an appreciation for the present.
And Adrian Peterson believes that making $10 million dollars base per year is akin to modern day slavery.
I know, I know. He misspoke, was taken out of context, was misquoted, whatever happens to be the excuse du jour. However, I can't really think of a way to interpret that comment that wouldn't leave him sounding like an petulant brat.*
The bottom line for me is that he is way out of touch. The lowest paid NFL player gets paid more in month than the vast majority of Americans get paid in a year. Adrian Peterson makes more in a week of base salary than I make in three years. I don't criticize him for making money playing a game. I don't necessarily criticize him for wanting more of it. Moreover, I don't criticize the owners for wanting to hoard their money. For both the players and the owners, it's their life and money. I'm staying out of the details of what they do with it.
I love football. I look forward to the start of the season, and, for at least the first quarter of the first game, I have hopes every year that the Dolphins will make the playoffs.
However, I do not HAVE to watch football. Football does not pay my bills. I have no problem turning off a good game if my wife or daughters need my attention. My life does not depend on the game. So, if owners and players can't sit down and get a collective clue as to priorities, I'm not going to lose any sleep over it. I'll do something else.
I'm not really sure that Major League Baseball ("America's Game") ever really recovered from the strike almost 17 years ago. Perhaps the NFL should take note.
Slavery!?! Sure! Slavery to your own ego and entitlement. But I will do what I can to set you free.
If you can't get it straight, I'm changing the channel--even if you do come back.
*Don't get me wrong. He has a right to say what he says. If he wants to make it more offensive, he can certainly do that as well. However, he does not have the right to my attention, my money, or my loyalty.