Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Lesson in Manliness

The Art of Manliness addresses an on-going drama involving a reporter and the coach of the absolutely horrible Detroit Lions. The reported insinuated, and rightfully so, that the team's defensive coordinator would be unemployed if he wasn't married to the coach's daughter.

Here is the gist of the feud:
The question that just won't go away: Detroit Lions Coach Ron Marinelli refused to accept an apology from Detroit News columnist Rob Parker for his question Sunday about the team's defensive coordinator, who happens to be Marinelli's son-in-law.

Parker had asked, after the 15th Lions loss, whether Marinelli had wished his daughter had married a better defensive coordinator. Marinelli didn't respond Sunday, but certainly did on Monday, calling the question inappropriate. Now Detroit News Managing Editor Don Nauss says the question was unprofessional.

Unprofessional, yeah, but relevant - and an attempt to make light of a BAD situation in Detroit. But Marinelli won't own his mistake in choosing his son-in-law as defensive coordinator, and he won't forgive Parker's bad choice in humor.

Here's the key section from The Art of Manliness, who I think nails the real issue:

No, this question was very funny and Rob Parker should not get fired or suspended for it. An apology was fine and it should be left at that.

I am not endorsing his comments here, but I think manliness is about taking responsibility. Parker has taken responsibility for his question and apologized for any hurt feelings. Marinelli should accept the apology and simply say, “we are all very dissapointed by our season” and simply move on.

That being said, Rod Marinelli also has to take responsibility. He took a HUGE risk by placing his son-in-law as the defensive coordinator. It has not worked out, people in Detroit are pissed about it, and he has to step up and address the critics. Also, Marinelli has to take the heat. He is the guy in charge. He is the coach and ultimately responsible for putting his team in position to win. He has failed on this point. Don’t want the heat, then don’t take the millions of dollars in salary and the position which is coveted by so many.

Damn straight. I don't care if you are a man or a woman, it is incumbent upon all mature human beings to take responsibility for the things we do, the decisions we make, or the missteps we take in life.

Marinelli probably should have never hired his son-in-law as his defensive coordinator, especially given his lack of experience. Now take the hit, fire the kid, and admit you made a mistake - it's that simple.

It's always that simple, if only we are mature enough to "man up."

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