We live in a world today where detractors gain more by their meanness to an individual than by praising their skill, ambition and ability to rise above the odds.
This morning after placing fourth and receiving dozens of nasty tweets the girl broke down and cried on The Today Show.
I was moved this morning watching Lolo. She came in fourth. Not a shameful place to be , but obviously a hard pill to swallow. She saw four years training to represent her country result in her ending in fourth place and the world becoming mean, nasty and cruel.
The admiration and pride should come with us knowing that Lolo Jones was on the team.
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The New York Times article depicting Lolo Jones as a “profiteer of the merchandising of herself over her athletic prowess” is mean. It is 100% mean-spirited.
The two paragraphs that stand out the most are:
“After stumbling four years ago, she is back on her feet, back in the Games. Back in position to be appreciated for her athletic skill, not merely her sex appeal. Back in position to undress her opponents, not herself.”
“Still, Jones has received far greater publicity than any other American track and field athlete competing in the London Games. This was based not on achievement but on her exotic beauty and on a sad and cynical marketing campaign. Essentially, Jones has decided she will be whatever anyone wants her to be — vixen, virgin, victim — to draw attention to herself and the many products she endorses.”
First, these athletes go and compete representing our country. They open their hearts so that you may get to know them. Endorsements help support their lifestyle of being able to train 6 days a week. The 6 day training schedule doesn’t allow them to hold jobs like you or I. Longman thinks that Lolo’s “exotic” looks (she’s from that exotic faraway land of Iowa) and story of redemption supersedes her hurdling prowess. Really? Calling the woman’s looks “exotic” is insulting. You are color struck. That is a veiled jealous insult at her beauty. In America, beauty is dictated by blonde hair and blue eyes. You begrudgingly admit she is attractive, but justify it as being exotic.
Secondly, her personal testimony is strengthening. It is supportive to the many individuals that live lives similar to her. We are many. I dare you to come have that conversation with me. Some of us, actually have strong Christian values that dictate our actions and belief system. The idea that Christians need to dress like a monk and act like a nun is not only biased, but inaccurate. We dance. We wear nice clothes. We hang out with friends. We are not always down on bended knee. The truth of the fact is that Lolo is talented. She is a Christ filled woman who quotes scripture and believes that as she said this morning, “a young girl can be inspired.” She made it to the Olympics. It’s not subjective. It’s fact. Yet, everyone seems to dog out her being faithful and fun. She really does live the faith. If you read her lips before her race you would have seen her say, “‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” She was praying. She isn’t using it as a marketing tool.
“They didn’t even do their research, calling me the Anna Kournikova of track. I have the American record. I am the American record holder indoors, I have two world indoor titles. Just because I don’t boast about these things, I don’t think I should be ripped apart by media. I laid it out there, fought hard for my country and it’s just a shame that I have to deal with so much backlash when I’m already so brokenhearted as it is.”
Watch Lolo’s heart breaking interview by clicking here.
The next time you write an article on someone, you might try writing about the actions not the personal lifestyle you obviously disdain.
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