Monday, May 6, 2013

Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose and the culture of ME! (Bonus video)


The state of the 2012-2013 Chicago Bulls can easily be used as a metaphor to describe the current entitlement society and Me Generation in the United States!

The Chicago Bulls, battling a depleted line-up due to injury and illness, beat the Brooklyn Nets on the road in the deciding Game 7 of the teams 1st-round NBA playoff series. Chicago will now play the Miami Heat in Round 2.

For the majority of the Bulls players, the opportunity to win this playoff series as a team superseded the physical trials and tribulations that so many of them faced.

They chose to play rather than take the easy way out which would have been to sit until they were 100% healthy.

Why? Because, as it is taught by coaches from pee-wee league through professional sports, there is no I in team!

This is the list of Chicago Bulls warriors who played, or tried to play, through debilitating injury and illness that might have kept lesser men on the sidelines

Luol Deng - Hospitalized
Kirk Hinrich - Playing through a calf injury
Yoakim Noah - Playing through plantar fasciitis
Taj Gibson - Played through flu-like symptoms
Nate Robinson - Played through flu-like symptoms throwing up on the bench

These players represent the workers, men who understand the opportunity they have been blessed with and who will fight to attain a goal even if it may mean the risk of further injury or personal discomfort.

As an historical analogy, they are men similar to those masses who emigrated to the United States through Ellis Island so many years ago, hoping for economic opportunity they may not have had at home or fleeing despotic governments in search of basic survival elsewhere.

They came to the United States and strove to succeed at all costs. The thought of taking government handouts, if available through New Deal programs, would have represented an absolutely abhorrent one and the antithesis of the way in which they were raised to live their lives.

They had drive, pride and the will to make a better life for themselves and for their families.

Fast forward to 2013, where the Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose embodies a trend towards self-absorption and an entitlement mentality in which society is there to serve the individual, and not the other way around.

Derrick Rose, the highly paid superstar of the Chicago Bulls, was medically cleared to play two months ago yet continues to languish on the sidelines until he, Derrick Rose, determines that he is good to go.

The Chicago Bulls, unwilling to rock the boat where it concerns their selfish and self-centered superstar, regardless of the consequences his absence may have in the playoffs, sit idly by and allow Derrick Rose to call the shots.

Where is the 2013 version of a 1970 edition Willis Reed, barely able to walk, famously limping out of the tunnel to spark his teammates on to an NBA Championship in Game 7 against the Los Angeles Lakers?


Instead Derrick Rose sits in his street clothes while the warriors around him go out and play.

It is the sports equivalent of the reverse to the phrase made famous by John F. Kennedy in his inaugural speech in which he said, "And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country."

But whether it's selfish and pampered sports stars or the many in the general population of the United States addicted to entitlements, when the Kennedy statement is invoked today there is nobody home to hear it.

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