Why Is The Michael Phelps Scandal Still Smoking?

The nation is still in mourning as we have found out that our national hero, 14-time gold medal winner Michael Phelps, is nothing but a common junkie. Photo evidence was found of Phelps filling his massive lungs with one Dave Matthews Band concert's worth of marijuana smoke in one toke -- probably while children were watching and taking note. As we shake our heads and mutter "Kids these days" and "But Obama said things would be different now!" maybe it's time to revisit exactly what we expect from our Olympic athletes and whether we should even be getting all prudish about this in the first place.

Let's be clear: Pretty much all the athletes at the Olympics were completely high. Half of them probably didn't even fully understand where they were or what they were doing. If you're wondering why none of the Olympic officials have noticed, it's because they're all coked out of their minds (how high were they when they added speed walking as an Olympic event?). The thing is, we expect our athletes to be role models. Kids look up to them, hoping they can swim fast and run fast and excel at all those other activities that are pretty much pointless in modern society where we have easy access to boats and cars. And as role models, we trust our Olympic athletes to do all their drugging and their boozing and their weird sex stuff and whatever behind closed doors. That's a trust Phelps broke. And we're not just talking about children being let down by his behavior, but also sponsors who have much more money and are much more important than stupid little kids who probably don't even know how to find a drug dealer.

Many people are making excuses for Phelps. "He's won so many gold medals," they say. "If he wants to party a little, take a toke from a bong, or run over blind people, that's not for us gold medal-less losers to question." Others point out the rough childhood Phelps had from being the illegitimate son of Aquaman and lacking the support of his clearly disinterested mother. I tend to dismiss these points -- not because I have a response but just because I'm generally dismissive of others -- but what is worth contemplating is whether we should even consider if what he did was wrong.