Role Models - MJ vs LJ

Michael disappoints me. His net worth is north of a billion dollars, but what has he done with it? LeBron, on the other hand, wants to raise the bar for everyone. So who's the better man?

Michael's dad was murdered by a couple young punks. Isn't that incentive enough to seek to right the wrongs and work toward ameliorating what led up to that horror? Wouldn't that be a better tribute to the memory of his dad and a better service to society than building the Jordan empire? Retiring on your mega yacht or opulent mansion might be fun for a while, but these accoutrements get old quickly, as an ambitious person will seek ever more gratification. Materialistic pursuits can become an addiction, and addictions are never satisfied. Contrary to what Gordon Gekko might say, greed is not good.

LeBron, on the other hand, leads a very frugal, almost Spartan lifestyle. His generosity with his money, his time, his sense of altruism, is very noble. He is a magnificent human being. Now granted, Michael has done some great charitable work, too, but LeBron blows Michael out of the water. Does that incremental buck really make you more satisfied than putting a smile on a kid's face, knowing that it might change that kid's life (and the world) forever?

Charles Barkley once said; "I am not a role model". I'm sorry, Mr. Barkley, but that title comes with the turf, there's no avoiding it. There are certain responsibilities that come along with success. Ideally, one should strive to build upon that success for the greater good. This is what makes progress happen. This is what gives people hope. This is the goal of an enlightened human being.

We need positive role models and better leaders. You won't be remembered for what you got, but you might be remembered for what you gave. LeBron understands this. I wish he'd run for president, he's a lot wiser and a much better man than our current sleazebag in chief.