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Story Archives: Mission possible, Mr. Phelps
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|Mission possible, Mr. Phelps|
Good morning, Mr. Phelps.
Your mission, if you decide to accept it, is to get past this latest incident which mars your amazing feat in the 2008 Olympic Games.
Swimmer Michael Phelps acknowledged "regrettable" behavior and "bad judgment" after a photo in a British newspaper showed him inhaling from a marijuana pipe.
In a statement released Sunday, the swimmer who won a record eight gold medals at the Beijing Games did not dispute the authenticity of the exclusive picture published Saturday by the tabloid News of the World.
"I engaged in behavior which was regrettable and demonstrated bad judgment," Phelps said in the statement released by one of his agents. "I'm 23 years old and despite the successes I've had in the pool, I acted in a youthful and inappropriate way, not in a manner people have come to expect from me. For this, I am sorry. I promise my fans and the public it will not happen again."
That's a good start Mr. Phelps.
News of the World said the picture was taken during a November house party while Phelps was visiting the University of South Carolina.
During that trip, he attended one of the school's football games and received a big ovation when introduced to the crowd.
While the newspaper did not specifically allege that Phelps was smoking pot, it did say the pipe is generally used for that purpose and anonymously quoted a partygoer who said the Olympic champion was "out of control from the moment he got there."
What were you thinking, Mr. Phelps? Here you have the world at your paddleling feet and you do something like this. positive for banned substances. The case is unlikely to fall under any doping rules.
This isn't the first embarrassing episode for Phelps after an Olympic triumph. In 2004, a few months removed from winning six gold and two bronze medals in Athens, the swimmer was arrested on a drunken driving charge at age 19. He pleaded guilty and apologized for the mistake.
Everyone makes mistakes, but not everyone wins eight gold medals in the Olympics.
You raised the bar when you captivated the world, Mr. Phelps. you are a role model, despite what people like Charles Barkley think about being a role model. Yeah, and where is he now.
If you accept this assignement, Mr. Phelps, you must continue to apologize, be seen doing community work, especially with young people, and go out of your way to condemn drugs.
If you can do things and have another phenominal run in the next Olympics, all should be forgiven.
Don't worry about the tape self-destructing, you may have done that yourself.
But there's still hope.
|Frank Morris Murder Series|