Howzat, a question that is asked of an umpire by a player on the fielding team as to whether a batsman is out or not.Now when we apply this to the real world, I think there is a question that needs to be asked of the media and community (regarded as the social umpire) about Shane Warne. Why is Shane Warne so popular and why do the media and people give a shit about what he does? Is it because he bats well in the community and social arena and contributes positively? Or has there not been a loud enough appeal for the umpire (the community and the media) to acknowledge his negative self centered attitudes and behaviors that are so regularly displayed and overlooked.
Is it because the community is lacking in positive sports role models and we are hanging on to him because that is all we have? Absolutely not, everywhere we look there are plenty of current and ex-sports people that have achieved far more both athletically and a community leaders than Warne ever did.Was he that much of a freakishly good sportsman that he should have an exemption from this kind of behavior. Not really, he was a spin bowler for Christ Sake!!! It’s not like he was a champion tennis player or gold medal track athlete.
Is his behavior not THAT bad or regular? We lets break it down.
· Sledging saga –Slagged off another player whilst.
· a microphone was turned on and gladly allowed a channel 9 camera man to take the fall.
· Being caught smoking –Caught smoking whilst doing an anti-smoking advertising campaign. Warne was a also one of the most popular players in the Australian side at this time and his smoking would have implied to a whole lot of kids who saw him as a role model that smoking wasn’t that bad.
· Sexting – being caught cheating on his wife with another woman after (s)ext messages were revealed.
· Cheating – Being banned from senior level cricket for 12 months for using a diuretic to improve his fitness. He then tried to blame his own mother for giving him the pills.
· Traffic offences - Being involved in a road rage incident against a cyclist and being caught speeding, all of this when he’s been contracted by the TAC to represent road safety in their latest campaign.
I think I can safely say that most people would regard the above mentioned collection as being regularly bad behavior.
So is it because there are a whole lot of insecure people in a similar demographic in the community that are finding an increasing need to feel good about themselves? To fix this they reflect the moral and behavioral standards as those displayed by Shane Warne, thinking that this is therefore OK? Is it because this demographic is feeling increasingly insecure about the concept of what it is to be Australian. Maybe. Perhaps this is a new mutation of the tall poppy syndrome. Rather than cutting down the tall poppies, lets promote the dud poppies so that no one has to get any better. It reminds me of something I learnt in primary school around the same time I learnt to play cricket. Lowest Common Denominator.
So what happens if we keep Shane Warne at the so called batting crease? We risk a continuation of our community becoming more and more apathetic to cheating and immoral behavior. We risk our young people not aspiring to being pillars of kindness, fairness and safety within society and thinking that it is OK to cheat and lie and drive fast.
So if you’re one of those people that every now and then feel that society is getting worse in this regard join me in saying YOUR OUT SHANE WARNE !!! Get off the field!!!