I feel the need to get this off my chest this morning. Over the past few weeks I have paid close attention to the Ray Lewis hype through the playoffs and into the Super Bowl and now I have some things to say. Before I begin my little rant let me preface it by saying that I am well aware that much of the press that he has received is created to sell papers, magazines and to get website hits.
Here’s what irks me, people who judge others. I am well aware of the controversies that surround Ray Lewis and I understand the seriousness of some of his past mistakes. Here’s the thing. Ray Lewis did not come from a stable background and coming from a difficult home situation can cause a myriad of problems and adjustments way into later life. Ray just like many others, probably people you know, have struggled all their lives building their own moral structure and emotional response system.
Another good example is Curtis Jackson, AKA 50 Cent. He came from a terribly troubled childhood and grew into a drug dealing teen who’s only thought each day was survival. It has taken him a long time to come around but he has truly come to understand the value of life, love and that helping others is the true key to happiness.
I mention these two guys because they are public examples of people who have been judged by actions that they have tried to atone for and rectify. I have known many, many people who have walked similar paths and made poor decisions. What interests me is how most of these people have become better people for their mistakes. As a parent I have allowed my kids to make mistakes, which is not always easy but in the mistakes we make are the real lessons in life. We can see first-hand what the impact is on ourselves and our families. These lessons allow us to grow and become better parents and human beings.
Please don’t respond with comments about how accepting bad behavior is morally wrong because if that is what you think this is about you are dead wrong.
In my opinion both of these men are success stories. They work hard in our communities to uplift others and their stories are examples of facing adversity, fears and obstacles and turning their lives around. If you made it all the way through this, thanks for hearing me.
BTW what have you done to be exceptional today?
“Wins and losses come a dime a dozen. But effort? Nobody can judge that. Because effort is between you and you.” Ray Lewis of the Baltimore Ravens
Your experience is your life; the things you go through make you who you are. So I’ve spent four years being what people call “successful,” and all the rest of my life not having it. And maybe because of that, the painful moments are more visible in my memory. If I’m writing about the environment I grew up in, then guns are gonna be goin’ off. 50 CENT, Spin, Jul. 2007