I’ve been following the Aaron Hernandez alleged murder case pretty closely and since I’m living in the Boston area I imagine I’ll be hearing and talking quite a bit about it throughout the next year as the criminal trial date could be set in 2014. Being an NFL fan, and with ESPN working the way it does, and CNN, FOX and other major networks covering the story and by simply being shocked by the craziness of this situation, well I admit, I’m captivated. Even though I wish I was reluctantly captivated, I must admit this week I am.
Here we have an extremely talented 23 year old football player who last summer signed a $40 million extension (with another $12.5million in signing bonus) who plays for one of the best NFL Teams/organizations in all of sports, who had a legitimate chance to play in another Super Bowl and enjoy a Pro-Bowl career who was instantly fired by the Patriots an hour of his arrest. Further, the lives of his fiancé, 8 month old daughter and the family and friends who loved him have radically been changed. I heard someone on the radio say, “All he had to do to insure his family’s prosperity for his children and grandchildren was not kill someone.” Wow.
It’s at this point, we typically say, “This is a tragedy.” But it isn’t.
The Aaron Hernandez story is not a tragedy. Now, the story of the victim, Odin Lloyd, is tragic. The story of Aaron Hernandez is a cautionary tale. And we’ve heard this one a number of times, a talented athlete/celebrity/influencer who uses his/her wealth/fame/power to steal/cheat/ or get away with something. Perhaps this individual is delusional, perhaps desperate but regardless of motivation, this person gets caught and squanders all the status and benefits of being him/her. Typically the general public turns on this person and hold him/her up as a cautionary tale for all to see. It’s the closest thing modern society has to a public crucifixion.
We’ve seen countless stories like this play out and we will certainly be talking more about similar ones. Most similarly will be the OJ Simpson saga who though was acquitted in 1997 has been back in jail since 2007. Among OJ’s cautionary tales is [Read more…]