Thursday, August 4, 2011

A Well Thought Out Reply to My Tebow Article

My friend Sebastian who has always been the most consistent Funk reader and responder wrote this reply to my earlier article on Tim Tebow. For some reason wouldn't let him post it, perhaps because of length, but either way it's more well written than my article and makes some accurate observations about anti-Tebow-ism.


For me so much of Tebow falls along political lines, once you remove Bronco fans, or Gator fans... and look at the people who love him vs. the people who hate him. You'll find the people who can't stand what he stands for, most likely find the concept of believing in god laughable, and all their anger and resentment that they have towards the church, or the unfairness of life, become focused through a magnifying glass towards Tebow. Add that to any pre-existing hatred and sports frustrations that might already exist by having a rivalry with the Broncos or Gators, and you've got someone more hated than the Pope. The Pope is just the head of a religion, he isn't a head of a religion, and playing for the Yankees. Now this is mostly true of the Tebow haters, and exists in milder forms through the anti-tebow spectrum.

For me, I don't go to church, I'm not dogmatic, or really religiously observant, but I really respect anyone who is. So when I look at Tebow, just as a man, religion aside, how can I hate someone who in the face of all he has accomplished on the field has done even more off of it. This is a man who has been more than generous with his time, and fame and serving something he truly believes in, in order to help other people improve their lives. To the cynical, it's for publicity, or because he thinks he better than others, but I can't. Here's a guy who took years out his life to go to other countries, before he was ever famous to help others. Not only that, this guy is a true natural leader, a guy who everyone of his fellow gators could look to, not only in the locker room, but in the huddle with seconds left, and the game on the line. He's one of these people who doesn't know how to loose. His mind is too strong, and he has it focused towards two things, winning football games, and helping people.

As a former athlete I respect it even more. I had tons of natural physical talent, but what I didn't have was that steel hard brain that could lie to me, and tell me we could win, and I can make us. As team captain my senior year, in the semi's, the furthest our team had gone in its history, I was in the huddle thinking.. "Yeah this is nice, we'll probably loose today." After a tight game we lost, I played tight, I shrank from the big moments, I was almost invisible on the field. I played ok when I had the chance but I didn't take over the game.

I respect the hell out of people like Tom Brady, or Michael Jordan, Federer, (I guess Tiger Woods?) Montana, all the greats, who can raise their game when it's needed most... So maybe Tebow isn't as naturally talented as those guys, but he's got the spirit, and we are giving him a harder time because of it? He should be commended. Not getting points off, saying... oh this is unfair! he only got drafted in the first round, BECAUSE HE'S AN AWESOME PERSON. Yes, and we should hope, not even NFL players, but just everyday people, were like him. And good things should happen to those people.

Meanwhile, Vick is untouchable. What really made over his image? Doing some obligitorty-guilt-ridden-post-
jail charity time, giving the required lip-service to saying all the right things. No, he just started playing really, really well. He's a changed man! Vick has to act good to inorder to have a career, Tebow is good almost seemingly inspite of his career. Tebow was doing all those things before he was expected to. Vick has to do them, or else he doesn't seemed rehabilitated, and would then having nothing. I don't think I've read any articles doubting that Vick has really changed. I'd love to read/write one. I mean, we were really easy to forgive him, but we can't forgive that Tebow got drafted in first round, because he's a good dude?

Ask ourselves a question: do we want a world with 1000 more people like Vick, or 1000 more people like Tim Tebow? (I'm not saying Vick is the nadir of humanity in the NFL, for the sake of the question you can replace Vick with Matt Cassel. Cassel's probably a nice good guy, but Tebow is just that much more of a special person.)

The point is, we should care more that Vick is potentially a bad dude, no one bemoans what he gets*, because he is a good player on the field. So right now, until Tebow can show he's a good player, people don't really care that he's a good person. But I think more people should be rooting for the good person, to also be a good player. Not Hating him for it.

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