Friday, February 19, 2010

Tiger's Wood

Apparently I'm gonna be in the minority here, but I honestly don't understand why everyone is so damn interested in Tiger Woods' sex life - with his wife or his lovers. I also don't believe that his sexual behavior tarnishes his ability to be a role model to young golfers. The problem is with society's obsession with sex, sexual behavior and conditional norms.

Below are the arguments I'd like make:

1) Tiger Woods' sexual behavior should not affect his ability to be a role model.

Unless Tiger's sexual behavior was part of his role modeling prior to his admitted affairs, his sexual behavior should not be a considering factor for role modelhood after his admissions. The world considered him a role model (because of his superior golfing abilities) before learning of his promiscuity. He was having sex with multiple women without the world's knowledge of it. Had the world not found out, he would still be considered a role model. His sexual behavior has nothing to do with his golfing abilities.

2) The lack of money and sex is the root of all evil.

Okay, I admit to being a little cute here - Mark Twain is actually credited with "the lack of money is the root of all evil" but I think sex should be included in there too. American society is obsessed with sex - probably because the majority isn't having it and the rest think it's a bad and naughty deed.

Seriously though, as both readers of this blog probably know, I was a philosophy major in college. My favorite philosopher to study was Michel Foucault. One of my favorite works of his is "The History of Sexuality" volume 1. The book starts with the following passage: "For a long time, the story goes, we supported a Victorian regime, and we continue to be dominated by it even today. Thus the image of the imperial prude is emblazoned on our restrained, mute, and hypocritical sexuality." Foucault continues by introducing the reader to a summarized version of how sexual practices was turned from a "tolerant familiarity with the illicit" to a defined and regulated behavior by the Victorian bourgeoisie. Whereas sexual practices had little need of secrecy and concealment in the seventeenth century, sex had become a silent behavior only to practiced by married couples with the purpose of procreation - which was actually good for the propagation of the state. Norms were established: married sex with the purpose of procreation = good, any other kind of sex = bad. This basic concept still holds true in the twenty-first century - which is actually kind of sad.

3) Tiger Woods' sex life is none of our business.

Regardless of Tiger Woods' public figure status, what he does in private with other consenting adults is none of anyone's business except his and the person(s) he's with at the time. Making his sexual practices my business is just proliferating point number two (2) above.

Now, please don't mistake my arguments as my condoning Tiger's behavior. I'm simply stating it's actually none of my business and should not affect his role-model abilities.

If you're interested in reading Michel Foucault's book, you can find out more about it by clicking on the image below or buy it on Amazon.