I have specifically tried not to post about this (except on twitter), because I don't think it deserves coverage. Especially not in this space, where were pretend to cover sports.
I am definitely not here passing judgment on Tiger or his actions. No one should be doing that. He is his own man with his own life, and his actions are his own decisions. But I have a big problem with the way this whole thing has been covered by the "sports" media, as my recent tweets have shown: Tiger deserves support, we have no right to get details of Tiger's personal life, this is not a sports story, the media has been wrong in their coverage, the media has been a bunch of idiots, and this does not give sports writers the right to give Tiger life (and moral) lessons.
I am opposed to ESPN/Sportscenter's coverage of this because it is not a sport. It is gossip. And it is an intrusion into an athlete's personal life. It needs to be covered, but should not be on Sportscenter as if it affects the game in some way. I am sure there are others, but I have only seen one writer covering this the right way (mostly by not judging Tiger and bashing the other members of the media for their garbage coverage).
The notion that golf, with its history of unapologetic racism and sexism, is somehow filled with men of impeccable integrity is a hysterical lie propagandized by hypocritical white men willing to commit the same crime they charge Tiger and his sponsors pulled off: the upholding of a patently false image.
"You play golf to drink with your boys, smoke cigars and talk about (sex)," former NBA player John Salley told me Wednesday. "And now we're surprised that a golfer was having sex. We think Tiger is the only one. Why are we treating Tiger like he's elected to public office? He plays golf, man."
This column is not meant to excuse Tiger's irresponsible behavior.
Despite Tiger's web site statement apologizing for "transgressions" that let his family down, I don't know — and neither do you — Tiger and Elin's sexual values.
They would not be America's first adult couple (let alone celebrity couple) to agree that extracurricular sex is acceptable as long it remains non-embarrassing for the other spouse. Since we've legalized assumption, I've chosen to assume Elin's hijacking of Tiger's cell phone and threats to call Jaimee Grubbs were provoked by the National Enquirer or some gossip magazine contacting Tiger, Elin or one of her friends for comment on an upcoming expose about Rachel Uchitel or one of Tiger's bim-hos.
For all we know, his "transgressions" might be the overall sloppiness of his affairs.
Rather than bloviate and hypocritically posture in a column or on TV/radio about non-criminal sex between consenting adults, wouldn't it be wise to examine what Tiger's perceived failure signifies beyond his humanity?
Is the public really served by Rick Reilly sitting on SportsCenter advising Tiger to appear on Oprah, skip the Masters and U.S. Open, prove to Elin and his fans that his marriage is more important than golf, fire his caddy, IMG and anyone Elin doesn't trust, refuse to take money from his sponsors and grant the media in-home interviews?
Is the public really served by Herm Edwards, a defrocked football preacher, sitting on SportsCenter criticizing Tiger's inner circle for failing to properly advise him to avoid extramarital sex?
Tiger's recent statement on tigerwoods.com does affect the game of golf, and is something that can be covered in this sports blog: "After much soul searching, I have decided to take an indefinite break from professional golf. I need to focus my attention on being a better husband, father, and person."
And J.A. Adande (@jadande) summed it up best: "In a related story, my interest in the PGA Tour is taking an indefinite break."