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How the Heroes Fall

Post 1


What is it with Afrikaans heroes? I mean sports heroes ... this is something with us how we idolize great sportsmen.

Hansie Cronjé was a true hero, captain of South Africa's national cricket team in the 1990's, winning a record number of matches. He could do no wrong ... except he did. It became known that he was involved in match-fixing except that he denied that he ever actually fixed a match. But he accepted lots of money from very shady characters, *that* he did not deny, only saying he got that money for nothing or just for basic info. Well, he was banned from cricket for life. Not long afterwards he died in a plane crash.

Joost van der Westhuizen was one of our best rugby players ever. He also a commentator on TV. He was mega-popular and married a local music star, Amor Vittone. Then a video came out showing him engage in sexy behaviour with a woman who was *not* Amor and also snorting some white stuff. He said no, that wasn't him. Well, Amor divorced him and he lost his TV contract. Not long afterwards he contracted a kind of motor-neuron disease that is ultimately fatal in most cases. Then he said yeah, it was him in the video.

Oscar Pistorius is an athlete that was an inspirational example. Missing both his lower legs, he neverthelese became a champion sprinter. He runs on two carbon prosheses earning him the name 'Blade Runner'. He even raced un-handicapped athletes. He was a shining example of how dreams could be realized in spite of adversity.

Then a few days ago ... shockingly close to Valentine's Day ... he shot his beautiful model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, dead in his house. Four shots. He says he thought she was an intruder. The case is now in court, he's charged with premeditated murder. We'll see what happens next ...

How the Heroes Fall

Post 2

Dmitri Gheorgheni

smiley - sadface I'm sorry to hear that, Willem. Sad, no matter what happens.

How the Heroes Fall

Post 3

Elektragheorgheni -Please read 'The Post'

Unfortunately good sportsmen seem to make the worst husbands, it is true in US too, there have been spates of American football stars and basketball stars that are guilty of abuse and murder. Too much competition is really bad for the ethics somehow. Course the football players suffer from multiple concussions so they probably have low level brain damage and must have anger management issues as well.

How the Heroes Fall

Post 4


It's more about heroes than about sportsmen, really. Some of the most touching artists and writers were truly nasty pieces of work. It's the "feet of clay" syndrome. Once you make a hero of someone and put someone on a pedestal, you've lost sight of the fact that that person is a human being - and is capable of doing the worst things that entails, as well as achieving the best.

How the Heroes Fall

Post 5


Putting people on a pedestal seems to be causing them to give in to temptation, either because they are pressured by their peers or hangers on, or because they think they are invincible and can get away with anything.

Very ambitious people in all walks of life seem to have similar flaws in their characters.

I hope we are not judging Oscar Pistorius too soon.

Websailor smiley - dragon

How the Heroes Fall

Post 6


Hi folks and thanks for the replies! I'm not judging him as in condemning him, Websailor. But in the best possible case (that it was an accident and he thought she was a burglar) it was a profoundly stupid, unnecessary and tragic thing he did.

A band I like a lot, Kingfisher Sky from the Netherlands, has a song on the topic:

Anyways. Over here I know and have known many writers and artists and most of them are quite nice people. But none of them were world-famous ...

I wonder if fame is the kind of good thing there can be too much of ...

How the Heroes Fall

Post 7



Definitely, especially for the young, it goes to their head. There are so many 'hangers on' who heap praise on them for their own ends too, which distorts their view of themselves.

Some manage to put their fame too good use and help others but many destroy themselves.

i dislike the gun law in the US. I have always maintained that if people have a gun, however law abiding they may be, at some time they might well use it 'unwisely'. Or it will be used against them.

Websailor smiley - dragon

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