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The Ethics of the Salary of Professional Athletes

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    My claim is that it is unethical for professional athletes to receive the enormous amount of compensation that they do By Unethical I mean that it is an injustice to the citizens of our hard working country that are out to make a dollar and do it by holding a well respected job. By compensation I mean the ridiculous amounts of money that an athlete makes for playing a particular sport. My value criteria or standards I will use are as follows: 1. A man who does not graduate college may not be as qualified to make the salaries that exist. 2. Ridiculous salaries is setting an example for our youth that just because you can hit a baseball or shoot a basketball or shoot a hockey puck or throw a football that you can make millions of dollars without truly earning it. 3. An athlete who graduates college deserves money based on his collegiate experience. I will argue the point of graduation first and then go into the fact that just because you have a god given talent that doesn’t mean you should make millions more than others, and finally I will conclude that the college graduate that does make it in the professional sports world deserves money based on experience from College. Now then turning to my first point of being a college graduate. Kobe Bryant one of the NBA’s most prolific scorers and highest paid player never ever went to College. In fact Bryant, from near my hometown in Delaware County bypassed college and made the leap to the NBA. Should he be able to receive the amount of money that he does, and the average college student that graduates and has a degree is not able to obtain a job that pays that kind of base salary. I think not, in fact I feel that the only kind of people that have any business of making the kind of money athletes do are doctors, lawyers, stockbrokers and maybe anyone who actually does attend graduate school. Now those kind of professions have the right of making that type of income due to the fact that they not only have they graduated college but they attended graduate school and have perfected their business and received a degree. Kevin Garnett has the richest contract in all of NBA history, 6 years 126 million dollars and he never ever stepped a foot on one of our great campuses in the United States of America. Please tell me why should Garnett make this money if he never ever had to earn it. If he never ever had to go to school and learn about society and the world we live in. THIS JUST IN: Kevin Garnett is taking classes right now in the state of Minnesota. Maybe he’ll graduate before his six year contract is up. Next I address the issue of setting a bad example for America’s youth I do not think it is fair to the children of tomorrow to give them false hopes by telling them that just because you have talent to play a sport you’ll be making millions of dollars. Lets face it most children in society will have the aspirations and the dreams of being an athlete but the fact of the matter is that just wont happen. So our athletes that say buy my shoes and you can be like me or drink my product and you’ll have my stamina and endurance are not lying to our children, but are giving them a wrong perception of the world we live in. Athletes should most definitely educate our children that you must get a good education and make something of yourself. If the opportunity to be an athlete comes along well then maybe they could act on it. It is not right to say that just because you can physically perform an athletic feat that you should be paid millions of dollars for it. An example of this kind of idea goes to the RF for the Cleveland Indians. Last week, Manny Ramirez stated that he wanted to abandon talks with the Indians and pursue his free agent market. Ramirez later was quoted as saying he would sign with the Indians if they gave him a 10 year deal worth 200 million dollars. 200 Million Dollars??? You have got to be kidding me, that is more money you or I is ever going to see in our lives, yet Mr. Ramirez throws that number out like it is nothing. These athletes should learn the value of a dollar and realize while they are making millions for playing sports many are starving and struggling to make a career for themselves in the United States. Other cases in baseball where this idea of asking for insane amounts of money occurs with Sammy Sosa, Ken Griffey Jr. as well as Kevin Brown. According to ESPN Kevin Brown received 105 million dollars over 5 which means he makes 21 million dollars a year for throwing a baseball over home plate. Not to mention the fact that he only pitches once every five days. Sure he might be a great pitcher and a wonderful citizen of Los Angeles, but I am sorry, he doesn’t deserve 21 million dollars a year for pitching. Also according to ESPN or good friend Griffey came over to the Reds for a pay cut. You must be saying what a great citizen a pay cut, that’s right folks Griffey was delivered for only 97 million dollars. Yeah thats right 97 million dollars and that is considered a bargain. WHY do the owners continue to pay these ridiculous salaries?? According to WGN Sammy Sosa, oh Sammy Sammy. Now Sammy he has a case. Sammy hit 65 home runs only two years ago. Well excuse me that means he should get that 150 million dollars that he is looking for, RIGHT? Wrong, just because you can crack a ball 365 feet out of a ballpark doesnt mean you should make 150 million dollars. Mr. Sosa you are a great player and I respect all you do but come on now you dont need that money and thus you should not be paid that kind of money. And finally I will conclude my standards with the argument that if indeed a college graduate does play a professional sport, his experience in college is the criteria that means he makes a decent amount of money This is also known as the Rick Brunson example. Rick is a fellow graduate of Temple University and a current Boston Celtic. Currently he is making the league minimum which is 120,000 dollars. However Rick did play for the New York Knicks absorbing 120,000 in 1998-99 and 1999-2000. Now Rick is a graduate of college. Yet he is only making 120,000 as compared to our good friend Kevin Garnett who we established earlier is making 126 million dollars over the next six years. Now why should Brunson sit on the bench and collect 100,000 a year?? The players are the product of the industry and thus if an owner offers more money to an athlete like Kevin Garnett rather than a Rick Brunson, that is immoral. By immoral I mean against the conventional business standards that college experience should outweigh athletic ability in this type of business. A person who graduated college would logically be more qualified and rewarded to receive a position such as Garnett’s. Currently the Professional Athletic world we live in believes otherwise. Now some people would say it is ok to pay these athletes this amount of money and I would challenge that by saying, sure it is OK if you want America’s youth to be money grubbing selfish human beings. Other people would say It just so happens the field these men and woman are in is a field that pays millions and millions of dollars to be their employers. What if there was no money in sports, what if the top salary in say the NBA was 200,000 dollars. Would there be the same amount of competition and would the sport be as enjoyable for these athletes to play. Not to mention that by going to sporting events we are condoning the payment of these athletes. Now I am a HUGE sports fan as most of you might know. I also am in the sports broadcasting business and I have my own company covering Philadelphia sporting events. That means that I go to games on a press credential and do not line the pockets of the owners and thus the players with my hard earned money. In fact If I was not in the sports broadcasting business, the chance I would attend these games and pay these ludicrous prices that would ultimately lead to these preposterous salaries is highly unlikely. In closing, today I have shown how the amount of money athletes make is unethical to our society. I have given proper examples of criteria that is backed up by proof. I have stated my claim and my case for the subject and have given reasons why I believe athletes salaries are ridiculous. Children of ours should not grow up and think that all they have to do is drink milk to be like Mike or wear Kobe’s shoes to attain his success, rather they must earn it instead.

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