Ethics Poison From Nike and Tiger Woods

Woods AdWoods Ad2

…and not for the first time, in either case.

But Woods’ new ad for Nike in the wake of his resurgence in his sport, is audaciously unethical, braying a dangerous, corrupting message into the cultural atmosphere, endorsing, in five simple-minded words, consequentialism, the Star Syndrome, the King’s Pass, non-ethical considerations over ethical ones, and “the ends justify the means.” That’s a pretty impressive load of ethics offal in so few words: congratulations to the soulless ignoramus who devised it.

The assorted miscreants, past and present, who would have gladly stood in for Tiger in his damning ad include dictators, despots, mass murderers, gangsters and corrupt politicians like Richard Daley, Marion Barry, Charley Rangel and Tom DeLay, corporate bandits, assassins, robber barons, Wall Street criminals, athletic cheaters like Lance Armstrong and Barry Bonds, serial fathers like the NBA’s priapic stars, arrogant social misfits like Charley Sheen, con artists and liars in all walks of life, and of course, our most popular politician, the man whose entire career is based on Nike’s new motto, William Jefferson Clinton.

I almost forgot the terrorists.

The likes of ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith are furiously defending Tiger, and insulting the public and the nation in the process, saying that Nike’s bilious philosophy can’t be wrong, because its true. Undoubtedly Woods, a screaming narcissist and sociopath if there ever was one, believes it’s true: he never demonstrated any real remorse or even acknowledgment of wrongdoing when it came to light that his carefully constructed image as a likeable, heroic family man was a complete sham. He was sorry he got caught, and most of all, that it cost him all that endorsement cash. So, in a sense, Nike’s ad is self-validating: Nike, now paying Tiger millions again, obviously believes that winning takes care of everything, and Tiger, whose gold victories won him back the endorsement contract, obviously believes it too.

Winning does not take care of anything. It is just that people with rotting values and ethics disabilities think winning takes care of everything, and they are easily exploited by companies like Nike and awful human beings like Tiger Woods, at least until they end up in jail. The statement is lie, and something that all parents possessing common sense and responsibility must immediately deconstruct for the impressionable minds in their charge. They must also scratch Nike from the list of permissible companies to purchase athletic gear from, if not permanently, than at least until it pulls the ad, fires Tiger Woods, and announces that the agency that devised its ode to villainy has been fired as well, to tend to its advertising campaigns for the hagiographic film biography of Hugo Chavez,  a reality show starring Casey Anthony,  and the movement to make Huey Long’s birthday a national holiday


Pointer: Michael West

Sources: Fox News, ESPN.

5 thoughts on “Ethics Poison From Nike and Tiger Woods

  1. I didn’t know they were trying to make Huey Long’s birthday a national holiday. ;’) How about some other ad ideas for this ad agency:

    “Fraud and market manipulation work if you are too big to be held accountable. Bank of America”

    “Scraping the bottom of the barrel until we poke through to another barrel. The Learning Channel”

    “Celebrity Suicide Watch: Fifteen washed up celebrities are put through a humiliating set of challenges until only the most shameless is left alive. Starring Dr. Drew.”

    The Nike defenders do have a point that it is true in today’s society. It is an unethical point, but it is true. The problem is, what do we have to do to change it? We would have to change our sports and fame-driven culture. In sports, winning is the point. It doesn’t matter if your players spend their free time volunteering at battered-women’s shelters, being foster parents, and helping children learn to read. If they don’t win, they don’t win. Who was the first clean rider who finished in the Tour de France in any of the years 1999-2005? It doesn’t matter. They didn’t win. Those people played by the rules and finished the Tour de France ahead of all the other people that didn’t cheat. Try to even find their names.

    You will never change this as long as there are competitive sports in schools. Who are allowed to wear the school jackets? Whose pictures are representing the school on the posters in all the stores in town? What school accomplishments are being reported in the media on a daily basis? It isn’t the Siemens-Westinghouse winners, it isn’t the students with the highest ACT scores, it isn’t the students who won History Day. It is the athletes. It may say school, but the only accomplishments celebrated in society are athletic.

    • You’ve launched a great parlor game.

      “Obamacare: Not having your flaws discovered until too late is as good as not having them at all!”

      “Ashley Judd (or Donald Trump): Pretending to run is better than running—you get all the publicity, and none of the responsibility!

      “Gun Control: Emotion beats reason every time!”

    • The Nike defenders do have a point that it is true in today’s society. It is an unethical point, but it is true.

      Key point. Nike is only appealing to the narcissist drive in our modern culture. But that isn’t a rational defense.

  2. It’s a sad commentary on our culture that this is the prevailing worldview of so many. Consequentialism and Relativism will be our downfall. Is there no honor left? I met a man on the train last week that found a lost transit card. It costs $23.75 for a week. I asked him if he turned it in to Lost & Found. He was dumbfounded. All he saw were the free rides. I thought of the Ten Commandments. I also thought of the person for whom that $23.75 couldn’t be replaced. Regardless, it wasn’t his card. At least try to find the owner and count it a blessing if the owner can’t be located. It’s the little things that slowly degrade our moral courage, leaving us open to despotic behavior at every turn.

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