This post originally appeared at LewRockwell.com on December 19, 2009:
The Trouble With Professionalism
On December 16,  an Associated Press panel named Tiger Woods the “athlete of the decade.” Since turning pro in 1997, Woods has enjoyed phenomenal success and unprecedented media adulation. Until recently, that is.
After winning the 2008 U.S. Open, Woods took a break from golf to recover from a serious knee injury. He returned in 2009 but failed to win any of this year’s four major championships. Then came the events of Thanksgiving weekend. I won’t rehash that story in this space; if you’ve read this far, you know what I’m talking about.
On December 9, Woods released a statement saying he would take an “indefinite leave” from golf to focus on his personal affairs. There’s no way to know when – or if – Woods will return. Woods certainly has the financial resources to live the rest of his life in seclusion. Nothing compels him to return to the public eye.
If he doesn’t return, the sports press that drove him into seclusion will have shot itself in the collective foot. The press needs Woods; he doesn’t need them. The press thinks just the opposite, of course, and that’s the subject I will address here. Continue reading