Wednesday, October 01, 2014
USA Swimming: Suspend Michael Phelps for a complete year and not allow him participate in the 2015 FINA World Championships!
Look at him: hasn't shaved in days, his hair is uncombed, and his eyes look dull, brown and lost.
In 2004 when Michael Phelps was 19-years-of-age he received his first DUI arrest. He acted contrite, look down a lot and issued the following statement:
"... Last week, I made a mistake. Getting in a car with anything to drink is wrong, dangerous and unacceptable. I’m 19 but was taught no matter how old you are, you should always take responsibility for your actions, which I will do. I’m extremely sorry for this. ..."
Phelps read a carefully parsed statement calling his arrest a mistake rather than the crime that it was. It was probably written by a handler so as to make this offense sound more like an "error" or a "goof" rather than a crime. Stating that his age was 19-years-old was also a subtle way of "dog whistling" to men who run the sport that his "mistake" should be blamed on Phelps being a "teenage kid" rather than an underage drinker.
A more accurate apology would have gone as follows: "... I engaged in a criminal act by driving drunk. I am an alcoholic and I need help." Subsequently he may have received the therapy and rehab he needed. Instead he got a three-month suspension during swimming's "off season" and it appears he did not get any better.
The whole world knows by now that Phelps has been arrested for a second DUI — There are alcoholics in this world (8%-of-the-population from what I read) and then there are dumb-ass alcoholics. Any dumb-ass that drinks and drives and knows that they have an alcohol issue and won't do anything about it is the worst kind of alcoholic. Those are the ones that drunk drive often.
Has Phelps ever been thrown out of a bar at closing time? Has he ever fallen down drunk and injured himself? Few people know that answer but we all know this: Gambling, pot, and two drunk driving arrests are bullet points on his resumé.
Phelps does not belong on the USA Swimming's national team. He belongs in both rehab & therapy. He needs to work on himself, his reputation, his business relationships. After that he needs redeem himself with his fans and sponsors. Allowing Phelps to compete next year after a second token suspension will just validate what we all know, sports bodies are corrupt and will let Phelps circle the drain while they profit.
When looking at Phelps' brand predicament I suspect the executives at Speedo, Arena and TYR are glad they did not sign him. I bet the executives for his new suit line are feeling let down and disgusted that somebody so gifted and iconic may have just tossed both his and their livelihoods in the trash.
Michael, capitulate and accept the truth. Get help now!