Sick of American tantrums? Blame Jimmy Connors.

Civil society in the U.S. started down the slippery slope towards today’s crazy town politics when the sporting world started tolerating outbursts that even a few years before no self-respecting athlete would have contemplated.

Had referees, supported by sports associations, drawn a line in the sand from the get go by rejecting such childish chicanery, we’d all be so much better off today. Instead, not just bad sportsmanship but the polar opposite of sportsmanship – lying, cheating, whatever-you-can-get-away-with – has become the norm.

We cannot be surprised by the assault on Congress last week or the fact that it was instigated and fuelled by Mr. Trump. He not only grew up amid deteriorating standards of decorum and civility, he learned to imitate petulant grandstanders like Connors and John McEnroe. Today, Americans believe that acting entitled is essential to winning; the smug will inherit the earth.

(Too stupid to be President? Perhaps, but if you convinced a nation of “losers and suckers” to elect you, wouldn’t you feel just a little bit smug too? Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images in https://foreignpolicy.com/2017/06/16/donald-trump-is-proving-too-stupid-to-be-president/)

I suppose the question might be asked whether the media and then ultimately we, the audience, aren’t to blame. Like fighting in hockey and happy dances in football, isn’t it all just about entertainment, and now an indispensible part of the game?

Let’s not let soul searching divert our attention from the ego-driven culprets. Pointing to causes and lowest common denominators does not help when it comes to morality and ethics. We need to expect more from public figures, not less. How about a little dignity? Or even some old fashioned class?

You are embarrassing your mom.
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