If you have turned your TV to any news channel or sports channel or logged onto the internet in the past week or so, then you have undoubtedly heard about Louisville basketball player Kevin Ware. Ware suffered a broken leg while attempting to block the shot of an opposing player. The injury was horrific and gruesome. Some are even calling it the worst broken bone an athlete has ever suffered.
The entire incident was caught on camera as the game was being aired on national TV. However, I strongly advise you against seeking out the video which is undoubtedly still hosted somewhere online. That recommendation is very strong especially if you have a weak stomach or are negatively affected by seeing other people getting injured. I can tell you that it was a horrible injury and was very shocking to watch.
In the hours and days following the injury, there was non-stop news coverage by many different media outlets about Ware and his injured leg. This is where I start to have a problem. Now, I don’t mind that the story was covered. I mean it was a major event from an important basketball game in the insanely popular March Madness tournament. However, as I followed the story, it started to become very clear to me that this injury was being majorly over-hyped. There are stories about how he is such a tough young man, how he inspired his team to play their best and try to win the tournament for him, and how well he handled the situation.
I’m not trying to say that his injury is something to be scoffed at or downplayed. However, there is no excuse for the way the media has turned this story into something it’s not. They have contorted this story into making it seem like this basketball player is some sort of hero. In my opinion he is nothing of the sort. He is just an athlete that suffered a freak accident during a basketball game. That’s it. He didn’t risk his own life to save that of another. He didn’t sacrifice himself for the greater good. He hasn’t suffered through challenges his entire life with little hope for change. He simply broke his leg.
He had surgery to repair the injury and was allowed to leave the hospital two days later. He will be traveling to the Final Four portion of March Madness to watch his teammates play. He is a healthy young athlete who should have no problems working through rehab and recovering fully. I don’t see how he deserves to be heralded as some sort of great inspiration.
There are people in this world who struggle everyday of their lives in some way. Some of those people struggle with health issues that they cannot control. Some suffer with finding work or supporting their families. Some risk their lives every day to protect complete strangers from danger or persecution. Those people are the ones we should be thinking about and offering our prayers towards. Not Kevin Ware and his broken leg.
I realize that this post will probably be controversial. I should point this out though. I am not trying to disrespect this young man in any way. This post is more a criticism of the national media (I’m looking at you ESPN) and how they took a story and blew it completely beyond anything that it ever should have become. When I see Kevin Ware crying during an interview because his team won a game that he got injured during, I just think of all those people who would give anything to only have to deal with a broken leg and the recovery from that instead of the much worse situations that they find themselves in.
So what I ask of anyone who reads this blog post is to maintain perspective when reacting to news stories like this. Yes, he suffered a gruesome injury, but a wider perspective tells us that in the grand schemes of things what happened to Kevin Ware is really not that bad.