When Will Tiger Come Out of the Woods?

Atrocious indeed, both of them:  the “outing” of an American CIA agent in the summer of 2003 by Columnist Robert Novak of The Washington Post and now the  sneak attack on Tiger Woods by another Washington Post staffer,  Sally Jenkins (headlined under the rubric “Don’t expect any answers from Mr. Privacy”).   Pretending to be the persona of Mr. Woods,  Jenkins,  masked in a vampire’s cloak, lambastes a great hero of our time for his refusal to reveal the circumstances that led, in his own exclusive Orlando neighborhood very early last Friday morning, to a puzzling accident and the suffering of considerable facial injuries. (He was unconscious for some time.)

A student interviewed by UNCP feature writer Justin Walker for the University Newswire  blamed the Bush Presidential Administration for having unveiled Valerie Plame Wilson as a “covert” CIA agent and thus having endangered her and all who knew or worked with her.  This student and others seem to neglect the fact that it was Novak who wrote the story,  no matter what his source or sources were.  A “Deep Throat” mentalityensued and created a maelstrom.  See All the President’s Men,  a see-all, tell-all book by two distinguished Washington Post staffers and made into an excellent movie.

Valerie Plame Wilson’s painful response to this terrible blemish on her life and memory caused her,  according to UNCP reporter Justin Walker to endure a “deep emotional spiral . . . . Her family life suffered, including relationships with friends, co-workers and husband.”  (It has been well-established that she was the collateral victim of a vendetta that was directed at her husband,  Joseph Wilson.)

And now the media have their knickers in knots because Mr. Woods refuses to reveal the true circumstances that led to his erratic driving.  It ought probably be enough if he turns the keys to the Escalade over to Elin for a couple of weeks or so.

Again it appears as if the “drive-by media” (as a certain “talk show host” terms our present-day “news” outlets) no longer have the integrity or courage to defend or act as a shield to one of the primary tripods upon which our privileges as American citizens are based:  “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

Ms. Jenkins appears to resent Tiger Woods’ defense of his and his family’s privacy,  something he has been zealous in protecting ever since he burst on the scene to become the world’s greatest golfer and perhaps, one day,  the greatest golfer of all time.

Valerie Plame Wilson,  in ending her speech at UNCP in the Distinguished Speakers Series, two years after the publication of her political and personal memoir  (My Life As a Spy:  My Betrayal By the White House),  quoted this observation by Thomas Jefferson:  “When the people fear their government,  there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.”

I know there are celebrities and wanna-be celebrities who seek attention and perhaps even adulation from their admirers.  They may also,  though,  as we have too frequently seen,  become victimized by an unhealthy, dangerous fixation.  Such a person, trying to bolster a sick, frail ego  can well end up  attacking, perhaps even killing, the object or objects of his or her fixation.

Sally Jenkins,  in my not-so-humble opinion,  does not deserve to even wash Tiger Woods’ Nike Tour golf ball.  Her journalistic venture today is an insult to such historical writers and columnists as Samuel Johnson,  Daniel Defoe,  Henry Fielding, Joseph Addison,  Richard Steele, Walt Whitman,  Mark Twain, Theodore Dreiser,  Ernest Hemingway,  John Dos Passos,   E.B. White,  James Thurber, A. J. Liebling, Joseph Mitchell,  and countless others well before our own time.  Her feature is a column filled with bombastic buffoonery,  a pretentious and portentous representation of one of the great human beings of our time, a disgusting piece of malicious slime.

After reading it,  I felt like the author who read a pusillanimous review of his latest book.  He wrote this message back to the reviewer:  “I am sitting in the smallest room in my house.  I have your review before me.  In a few minutes it will be behind me.”



15 Responses to “When Will Tiger Come Out of the Woods?”

  1. Tammy Stephens Says:

    Tiger is stuck in a sand trap. 😆

  2. Forest Crump Says:

    The Tiger Woods thing; he should adopt the Bill Cosby, David Letterman approach, yeah I did it, yeah I am paying for it, what’s your f-ing point.

    If he has had an affair or affairs I don’t care, he shouldn’t have gotten married in the first place but he did and now he is paying the price for playing outside the lines that he agreed to play inside of. I have no sympathy for him.

    Matter of fact, I am laughing because he is a bigger dumbass than I am.

  3. Jeff Thompson Says:

    Tiger can’t have his cake and eat it too.

  4. tom Says:

    Are the streets of this gated community state roads? If not what jurisdiction does the Florida Highway Patrol have for them to be involved in this incident?

  5. DL Says:

    Forest and Jeff how do you know he had an affair and he ‘s not obligated to talk w/ FSHP or the Media. Tiger has never talked to the Media about his family. Tiger has released photos of his family on his web site. Jeff what do you want to know? Just because you’re a celebrity does not mean you have to air your family problems. I don’t blame Tiger for trying to protect his wife as it my seem that she has to deal w/ the presssures of a Hollywood marriage and the tabloids. If his sponsors want to drop him go ahead, because golf ratings are important to ABC,CBS,NBC and the PGA.

  6. Raymond Rundus Says:

    Now you have to go online to read what the AP reports as Mr. Woods’ confession and his apology as well as a verbatim report of his taking the offensive vs. the intrusive and destructive American media that persist in aggressive, ill-advised, and at times sickening campaigns to tar and tarnish the reputations of prominent Americans.

    I can understand and support the examination and exposure by our media of bad deeds and illegal acts by our political leaders and our business CEOs and such. The media serves the public well through its investigative reporting of the shenanigans of public figures or “celebrities.” But as for professional folks, artists and actors and musicians and athletes and such, there ought to be a different set of standards.

    Keep in mind also that both our current President and renowned golfer Tiger Woods are half-Kansans, the products of what some might call “mixed marriages.” (Tiger’s father Earl was raised and educated in Manhattan, Kansas, thirty-some miles from my home on the range, and he played baseball for a time with the local “Blue Rapids All-Stars,” who accepted him as “one of their own,” as one of his team members told me several years ago.)

    We Sunflowers do not take lightly the words or actions of those who seek to damage or destroy us or “one of our own.” Else we might leave the open realms of the prairie and seek out the supposed “pundits” for some appropriate retribution. Maybe a home-made apple pie in the face?


  7. Paul Burch Says:

    Really enjoyed this piece, Dr. Rundus! I couldn’t agree more – they should leave the man alone! Gee whiz! It says something about our sick culture that the media is so fixated on this, but ignores much more serious, consequential news. Could also be why so many of those same news outlets are failing miserably, eh?

  8. Macky Myers Says:

    I’m relieved it’s Tiger in the news now. It’s new. It’s refreshing! Eventually, someone had to replace Michael Jackson as the paparazzo scapegoat. Tiger is not the first to break a leg for the tabloids, and I seriously doubt he’ll be the last.

    When you put on those ruby red slippers holding a dog named Toto and get swept away in a whirlwind, strange things can happen! Just follow the yellow-brick road.

    I thought we’d never hear the end of Paris Hilton, Lindsey Lohan and Britney Spears. Please tell me they’ve finally gone away.

  9. CICvet Says:

    What impresses me about Tiger is that he shows class. During his next appearance on the circuit (sometime in 2010, I think I read), he should have no problem proving his place in golf history. It’s sad, but the sports writers (and journalists who don’t know the difference between a puck and a schmuck) will bore many of us with stories with which they saturated us in 2009. If he reads any of them I hope it’s in the smallest room in his house — the room designed for such material.

  10. Rick Says:

    “I can understand and support the examination and exposure by our media of bad deeds and illegal acts by our political leaders and our business CEOs and such. The media serves the public well through its investigative reporting of the shenanigans of public figures or “celebrities.” But as for professional folks, artists and actors and musicians and athletes and such, there ought to be a different set of standards.”

    So if I read correctly what you wrote, you are suggesting that we have two sets of standards on when the media can do investigative reporting?

    I wonder why all the outrage now? This is not the first (or last) “professional” that has come under the media frenzy. So why now?

  11. Kindred Spirit Says:

    Funny how you rarely read about famous women cheating on their husbands and being oh so apologetic for it.

  12. TheSkeptic Says:

    Even though you may have filt mignon at home, sometimes you just want a Big Mac.

  13. Raymond Rundus Says:

    As a general reply:
    (1) Every profession worthy of its name has established a code of ethics which its members are obliged to observe and maintain.
    (2) I do believe that members of the “Fourth Estate” (journalists of all creeds and colors) practice a profession and thus should also govern themselves by ethical principles.
    (3) It is not for me or nor for others not in the profession of journalism (which today has both a print and a video/audio existence) to establish the ethics of the profession nor to police those who practice it. (re what “Rick” has written in his comments, and observe the practices of the AMA, the ABA, on so on)
    (4) It should be they who would need to consider that standards for investigative reporting may be applied differently to different circumstances, putting criminal conduct at the top of the list for a need of public knowledge.

    Since the Florida law enforcement officials have completed their investigation and signed off on last week’s accident involving Tiger and Elin Woods, the media has no apparent need to pursue their own investigation into what the majority of us would agree is a matter of private concern and resolution, not one that requires further inquiry and public exposure. (The waitress who had a presumptive relationship with Mr. Woods is obviously not a “lady” and probably will profit handomely from her revelations, in similar manner as a photographer, in these our ever-eroding values, might profit from getting out the first pix of the birth of a baby to a celebrity parent or parents, whether that baby was of “legitimate,” “adoptive,” or “illegitimate” birth.)

    Remember: the print media of its time (including news photographers) respected the private lives of Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and John F. Kennedy, all of whom were, long after their deaths, were revealed to have been involved in one or more sexual relationships outside their marriages. Bill Clinton, alas, was not so “lucky.”


  14. Raymond Rundus Says:

    One more addendum to my “When Will Tiger Come Out of the Woods” posting:

    Grievous it is how our culture has become so fixated on the goals of gaining “celebrity” and therefore “fame” (“notoriety” seems to serve just as well) that an entire industry feeds off this fixation and fascination.

    I commend to you Mary Zahran’s op-ed piece in the Saturday “Observer.”

    It is headlined “An apology we can accept” and is an extensive and brilliant analysis of the rhetoric of apologies, concluding that Mr. Woods’s apology for his recent “transgressions” was sincere, from the heart, and ennobling: in contrast to the weasel words being used by politicians and other celebrities who simply are trying to “get off the hook” rather than find redemption through the ancient and traditional processes of a genuine and contrite confession.

    There is much more that will and should follow from this story . . . . As his father once anticipated, his son Eldrick (better know as “Tiger”) will leave a legacy that goes far beyond his athletic talents and his golf winnings. After all, he is a “Cablinasian/American”–carrying within him the genetic fruits of being part-Caucasian, part-black, part-Indian, and part-Asian: our first truly global athlete.

  15. Raymond Rundus Says:

    Another uptick: for information about the impact of a book found in Tiger Woods’ Escalade after the Florida accident on the sales of an out-of-print physics, go to my newer posting “Roll On, Thou Mighty Woods, Roll On” and scroll down to the third comment, which will give you the link to a “Manchester Guardian” article that came out this past Saturday.
    A physicist friend sent it to me. . . .


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