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Perham Focus
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Let the guy golf
Perham Minnesota 222 2nd Avenue SE 56573

I'm not perfect. Neither is anyone else, but some people are held to unrealistic expectations. This week, month and year that person is Tiger Woods.

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It's all too popular to run around pointing fingers at celebrities and making them out to be more than they are. In America, our culture strives to build heroes and works even harder to tear them down. At the end of the day, aside from outrageous salaries and endorsement deals, many of these purported heroes are merely human beings, as flawed as anyone else.

While not condoning Woods' actions that led to this over-hype of media from tabloid rags to the national news, personally, I think the man has done enough for the public so that we can all get on with our lives and get back to why Woods is so popular--the way he hits the golf ball.

At the very least, people can stop talking with scarlet letters. It's a shame the heads of golf's greatest event were unable to keep their mouths from running about the subject.

From out of the rough, as the Masters tournament began, came a statement from Augusta National Chairman Billy Payne, "Our hero did not live up to the expectations of the role model we saw for our children."

The color of the sky at Augusta must be a whiter shade of rosy than here in Otter Tail County.

This mess harkens back to another famous athlete and friend of Tiger's, Charles Barkley, who publicly asked of his basketball fame, "A million guys can dunk a basketball in jail; should they be role models?"

Barkley's message was to quit looking to him to "raise your kids." The same can be said of Tiger Woods.

The man has been the greatest golfer on the planet and obviously, not the greatest husband or father figure. Go hit the links this weekend. You can probably expound on similar rhetoric about someone in your foursome. That might even be applicable to you and you are a role model to someone's kids and your own.

That is who role models are. People your children know, not some guy on television. If Woods should be cited for anything it is how not to apologize. Five minute scripted sessions on television almost beckon rot, like that from Payne.

Was Payne making a national comment, based on his own family and how they felt about Woods as a role model for their offspring, because of their personal affiliation, when he dropped the "Our hero..." blurb like he was "Shoutin' in that Amen Corner?" I doubt it, highly.

According to the official site of the Masters Tournament, the name Amen Corner refers to hole Nos. 11, 12 and 13. Journalist Herbert Warren Wind coined the phrase. He wrote that it was composed of the second half of hole No. 11, hole No. 12 and the first half of hole No. 13 at Augusta.

Wind was searching for an appropriate name for the location where critical action had taken place from Arnold Palmer's first win at Augusta. He borrowed the name from an old jazz recording "Shoutin' in that Amen Corner".

Searching for an appropriate name for critical actions. Watching this never ending debacle unfold, linger and seem to never go away has given me a few choice words, like the pain of watching your golf ball slice with the wind into the woods.

There is a word for Payne's remonstration, Woods' apologies, the whole kit and caboodle. That word is ridiculous.

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Robert Williams
Robert is the Sports Editor of Detroit Lakes Newspapers. Williams worked prior as the Sports Editor in Perham for the Focus, a Forum Communications newspaper, from 2010-14. 
(218) 844-1442
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