Tiger Woods: Is He Deserving of Our Sympathy?

Immer Chriswell@@immerrangeCorrespondent IMay 24, 2011

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FL - MAY 12:  Tiger Woods hits a shot on the fifth hole as caddie Steve Williams looks on during the first round of THE PLAYERS Championship held at THE PLAYERS Stadium course at TPC Sawgrass on May 12, 2011 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.  Woods withdrew after shooting a 42 on the front nine holes.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Lately, the Tiger Woods drama only seems to be multiplying. His nagging knee problem has left many people questioning Tiger's game, mentality and heart. 

Most people point to his downfall last year as the source of all evil and refuse to forgive Tiger. He has gone from the superman of golf to the villain. People have finally started to realize that Tiger is a self-centered, arrogant (I say confident) and disrespectful person.

But let's take a reality check. Even when he made the putt on 18 at the U.S. Open in 2008, Tiger had blood pumping through his veins. Despite many people who believe that he is a cold-blooded beast, Tiger is a human.

A human is defined as: of, pertaining to, characteristic of or having the nature of people.

In other words, he's like me and you. Except he is worth almost a billion dollars, and when he sprays the ball over a golf course, it's normally to shoot 74 (except at the PLAYERS). It also means that like myself, and yourself, he makes mistakes.

Tiger is far from the perfect being we came to know him as. He has had countless marital issues, and he refuses to divulge how many "issues" he had. But who would want the world to know? It's his life. Isn't it enough to know that there are about 15 women laying claim to an affair with Tiger, and just let it go?

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Then there's Tiger's attitude with the media. He's always been short, evasive and basically anything but to the point with the media. He exudes negativity after an average round, and doesn't even beam after an outstanding round. He only does when he wins (what does that look like again?). But again, he's human. That means he has emotions, and those emotions are very much strong. He isn't a good public speaker, much like the rest of the world.

There's plenty more faults I could assault Tiger for verbally, but let's face it: He's no superhuman. In fact, he's about as human as they come.

And that's exactly why he deserves our sympathy. Did he bring this upon himself? Very much. Was he looked at as a role model? Most definitely. But why does he deserve to be treated so much worse than other people, who are the same as him with all their faults, just because he's publicized?

He doesn't. Just because someone is in the public eye, does not mean that they need to be perfect. Could Tiger be better than he is? Definitely. But how many people could handle all of the crap he has had in the past two years? Not many. You can say all you want that he brought it on himself, that he got what he deserved, but if you were in his situation, you would want support.

That's what Tiger deserves. Despite all of his flaws, let's face it: The expectation we held for Tiger was much higher than he could hold. He's no Phil Mickelson or Matt Kuchar. Even though he should be more like them, he will never be. He's Tiger Woods, an original person, and for everything he's been through, I will always respect him. He may not always be perfect, but I never asked for a perfect person. Just a great golfer to watch every weekend.